IMPACT OF DIGITAL SOCIAL ENVIRONMENT ON LEADERSHIP OF SELECTED E-COMMERCE FIRMS IN SOUTH WEST, NIGERIA

IMPACT OF DIGITAL SOCIAL ENVIRONMENT ON LEADERSHIP OF SELECTED E-COMMERCE FIRMS IN SOUTH WEST, NIGERIA

ABSTRACT

This study is motivated by the empirical lacuna as regards the impacts of digital social environment on leadership of e-businesses. Therefore, the broad objective was to investigate the impact of digital social environment on leadership of selected e-business firms in the South West, Nigeria. However, the specific objectives were to: (i) ascertain the impact of e-business on leadership skills, (ii) determine the nature of relationship between digital social environment and leadership of e-commerce, (iii) evaluate the effects of online consulting on managerial philosophy of e-commerce firms, (iv) assess the extent online information sharing impact on interpersonal skills in e-commerce firms, (v) determine the impact online training leadership knowledge in e-commerce firms in Nigerian. The study adopted a cross-sectional survey design. The population of the study was 996 staff of Jumia 303, Konga 393, and Heels 300 all in South West, Nigeria. The choice of these e-commerce firms was informed by the fact that they have maintained a good, strong, and steady competitive positions wherein the criterion of more than two or not more than ten years of existence as startup e-business firms. The sample size of 278 was obtained using Cochran formula. Stratified sampling was used to select respondents in each of the selected firms. Data were collated using the designed questionnaire structured on a 5-point likert scale. Validation was carried out using five experts from both the industry and department of Management, University of Nigeria, Enugu campus. A pilot study was conducted using split-half method and test with Spearman’s rank correlation coefficient, giving a coefficient of 0.95, indicating a high degree of items consistency. Both descriptive and inferential statistics were used for data analysis at 5% probability level of significance. To a large extent, e-business has significant positive impact on leadership skill of e-commerce firms (r = 0.944, P<.05). There is positive relationship between digital social environment and leadership of e-commerce firms in srouthwest Nigeria. (r = 0.617; p<0.01). Online consulting affects managerial philosophy of e-commerce firms significantly (r = 0.955, P< 0.05).Online information sharing impacts on interpersonal skills in e-commerce firms (Zcal= 6.381 >Zcritical= 1.96).Online training has positive impacts on leadership knowledge in e-commerce firms (Zcal= 4.801 against Zcritical= 1.96). With the above, we conclude that Leadership of e-commerce firms, among other variables determines the required behavioral shift from managing to leading; consequent upon, to give their organizations the drive to thrive, survive and sustain relevance in this digital age wherein performance of their organizations will be optimized. High quality leader-subordinate relationship among employer and employees is key to survive. Technological adaptation in organizational processes creates healthy environment through sharing of appropriate work-based information. It aids effective managerial strategy to transfer and enhance  knowledge among staff members as it also encourage healthy interpersonal relations which lead to task accomplishment to positive outcomes such as good relational skills, better performance, lower turnover, job satisfaction and organizational commitment. Therefore, we recommend e-business leadership should be more proactive in pre-empting possible industrial and/or technological change paradyms, the more equipped and ready they would be to stay ahead. Use of various online consulting and/or think-thanks will immensely be useful in crafting positive change(s) in the industry.