Perceptions of Personal Web Usage in the Workplace: A Q-Methodology Approach

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An important aspect to managing Personal Web Usage (PWU) at the workplace lies in understanding and reshaping the perceptions of the users. The study contends that the outward manifestation of PWU behaviors at the workplace is but one consequence of the actors' attitudes which in turn are determinants of their ingrained beliefs. This study explores user perceptions about PWU using a web-based Q-methodology. Q-methodology used in this study is suitable for exploratory research, to obtain a deeper and first-hand understanding about the underlying phenomena about an under-explored concept. Twenty-five participants were asked to sort 38 statements according to their relative importance. The results uncover three distinct factors PWU: (1) cyber-bureaucrat, (2) cyber-humanist, and (3) cyber-adventurer. This indicates that PWU maybe a multidimensional construct instead of a uni-dimensional one as previously thought. The findings of this study can help managers understand, and shape the perceptions of the users rather than the outwardly manifested behaviors.

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