تغییرات در عوامل موقعیتی و عوامل موضعی به عنوان پیش بینی کننده های رضایت شغلی
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|6261||2013||11 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||7170 کلمه|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Journal of Vocational Behavior, Volume 83, Issue 1, August 2013, Pages 88–98
Arguably, job satisfaction is one of the most important variables with regard to work. When explaining job satisfaction, research usually focuses on predictor variables in terms of levels but neglects growth rates. Therefore it remains unclear how potential predictors evolve over time and how their development affects job satisfaction. Using multivariate latent growth modeling in a study with 1145 young workers over five years, we analyzed how well job satisfaction is predicted a) by levels of situational (i.e., job control) and dispositional (i.e., Core Self-Evaluations (CSE)) factors and b) by growth per year of these predictors. Results showed both intercepts and slopes to be related to each other, suggesting a joint growth of job control and CSE during early careers. Job satisfaction after five years was best predicted by the slopes of job control (β = .31, p < .001) and CSE (β = .34, p < .01). These findings provide further longitudinal evidence for the role of situational as well as dispositional factors for predicting job satisfaction. In addition, growth rates per year were better predictors than initial levels. Furthermore, a lack of change in job control or CSE went along with a drop in job satisfaction, implying that young workers need to perceive things to be improving in order to increase, or at least maintain, their level of job satisfaction. In terms of theory, the relative importance of levels versus changes deserves more attention. In terms of practical implications, our results suggest a double emphasis on job design (i.e., granting sufficient, and increasing, control) and on personal development (e.g., through training) so that people experience a match between both. Finally, negative associations between initial levels and growth rates suggest that people are quite successful in achieving a reasonable fit between their job characteristics and their needs and goals.
Job satisfaction refers to “a positive (or negative) evaluative judgment one makes about one's job or job situation” (Weiss, 2002, p. 175). It is associated with numerous organizational variables like absenteeism, turnover, organizational commitment, and job performance (Judge et al., 2001 and Kammeyer-Mueller et al., 2005). Being satisfied can be regarded as an element of personal well-being (Warr, 2007) and is associated with physical health (Faragher, Cass, & Cooper, 2005). There are a number of longitudinal studies predicting job satisfaction over time (e.g., Elfering et al., 2000, Staw et al., 1986 and Zapf et al., 1996). These predictions are, however, static in the sense that job satisfaction is predicted by the levels of the predictors at an earlier time; however, changes in the predictors over time are not accounted for. Some studies that used job satisfaction as a predictor rather than an outcome showed changes in job satisfaction to predict certain outcomes, such as turnover. For example, Boswell, Boudreau, and Tichy (2005) and Semmer and Schallberger (1996) showed that job satisfaction declines before a job change and increases immediately afterwards (see also Boswell, Shipp, Payne, and Culbertson (2009)). However, there is a dearth of studies investigating job satisfaction as an outcome depending on changes in predictor variables; the only studies that come close to this type of investigation focus on the effect of discrete changes, such as turnover, as predictors of changes in job satisfaction ( Boswell et al., 2005, Boswell et al., 2009 and Semmer et al., 1996), or as predictors of the stability of job satisfaction ( Dormann and Zapf, 2001 and Elfering et al., 2000). This article contributes to the literature by investigating how the level of job satisfaction at a later time can be predicted by levels as well as slopes of predictor variables in a latent growth model. As it is well known that both situational and dispositional factors influence satisfaction (Cohrs et al., 2006, Hulin and Judge, 2003, Judge et al., 1997 and Steel and Rentsch, 1997), our investigation focuses on an important situational variable (i.e., control), and on an important dispositional variable (i.e., core self-evaluations), trying to predict job satisfaction by the levels and the change over time in both variables simultaneously. 1.1. Situational influences: The importance of control Of the many aspects of the work situation that are associated with job satisfaction, job control (which we use interchangeably with autonomy) is especially important. Job control, that is, being able to exert influence on one's way of working in terms of tasks, times, or means, and therefore to influence situations in accordance with one's needs, is arguably one of the most important aspects of job design (Hackman and Oldham, 1980, Humphrey et al., 2007, Karasek and Theorell, 1990 and Parker and Wall, 1998). Job control is important for a variety of outcomes such as employee health, attitudes toward work, and performance (Bosma et al., 1997 and Warr, 2007); it predicts job satisfaction quite consistently (Fried and Ferris, 1987 and Humphrey et al., 2007). Perceived working conditions, including control, often show substantial stability over time (Dormann and Zapf, 2001 and Kälin et al., 2000). Regarding job control, previous research showed that the perception of job control increased after entering the labor market; after their first year of work, people started to perceive more freedom to organize their work (Elfering et al., 2007 and Kälin et al., 2000). Even though mean values of job satisfaction tend to decline after entering the labor market and reach the lowest level around the age of 26, on an individual level, advancements in terms of status, tenure, etc. may lead to increases in job control and other indicators of good job conditions. Such improvements seem to be one of the factors underlying the subsequent increase in job satisfaction with age (Birdi, Warr, & Oswald, 1995). Altogether, changes in (perceived) job control seem likely, and if they occur, it also seems likely that they are associated with concomitant changes in job satisfaction. 1.2. Dispositional influences: The role of CSE The dispositional approach rests on findings that there is some stability in attitudes over time and across situations (Dormann and Zapf, 2001, Judge et al., 2002b and Staw et al., 1986). Stable individual differences are likely to affect job satisfaction and the perception of working conditions (Judge, Locke, Durham, & Kluger, 1998). The concept of Core Self-Evaluations (CSE) is a prominent candidate for a construct that exerts such an influence. CSE was introduced by Judge et al. (1997) as a higher-order construct representing the combination of well-established first order constructs that tend to have similar associations with job satisfaction. A high level in CSE is characterized by high self-esteem, high self-efficacy, internal locus of control, and low neuroticism (Bono and Judge, 2003 and Judge et al., 1998); of these, locus of control is the weakest indicator, and the value of including it in the CSE concept is doubtful (Judge, Erez, Bono, & Thoresen, 2002). CSE is quite stable over time (e.g., two year interval, Dormann, Fay, Zapf, & Frese, 2006), and has been shown to be associated with job satisfaction (Judge and Bono, 2001, Judge et al., 2002a and Wu and Griffin, 2012). Associations between CSE and job satisfaction may be direct as well as indirect (Judge, Bono, & Locke, 2000). The direct way is straightforward, in that CSE represent the dispositional aspect of job satisfaction (Judge et al., 1998). Findings that job satisfaction is rather stable over time and can be predicted by personality variables over considerable intervals (e.g. Scollon and Diener, 2006 and Staw et al., 1986) have often been interpreted as indicating a strong dispositional character of job satisfaction, and thus of the direct association between personality and job satisfaction as described above. However, Dormann and Zapf (2001) challenged this conclusion: When they included job content and job stressors as control variables, the stability of job satisfaction dropped dramatically. Similarly, findings that the stability of job satisfaction is considerably lower for people who change jobs (Dormann and Zapf, 2001 and Elfering et al., 2000) implies that the stability of job satisfaction is partly due to stable conditions at work. Indirectly, CSE may influence job satisfaction through two processes: First, CSE influence what type of environment people are in, leading to specific experiences at work, which in turn are a source of job satisfaction (Dormann and Zapf, 2001 and Judge and Hurst, 2007). Such a process may involve self-selection (seeking and seizing opportunities) as well as selection by others (employers). Also, employees may craft their job in such a way that job characteristics become more consistent with their personality (Tims and Bakker, 2010 and Wrzesniewski and Dutton, 2001). Second, CSE may determine how individuals perceive and process information about their work environment. This process results in more positive conclusions about work among people reporting high levels of CSE, whereas people with more negative self-evaluations should come to more negative conclusions about their work environment (Dormann and Zapf, 2001 and Judge and Hurst, 2007). 1.3. The role of time As described above, research typically tries to predict job satisfaction through levels of predictor variables and does not account for changes in these predictors. Articles covering job satisfaction that do discuss and model time-related aspects usually focus on newcomers regarding turnover, socialization, and career outcomes ( Chan and Schmitt, 2000, Jokisaari and Nurmi, 2009, Lance et al., 2000, Salmela-Aro and Nurmi, 2007 and Vandenberghe et al., 2011). However, the main objective of these studies is not to explain how job satisfaction is affected by changes in working conditions but how job satisfaction evolves over time after entering a new organization (Boswell et al., 2009) and how these changes predict other concepts such as role conflict and overload (Vandenberghe et al., 2011) or supervisor support (Jokisaari & Nurmi, 2009). Other articles that account for time related aspects relate changes in job satisfaction to personality development ( Salmela-Aro and Nurmi, 2007 and Scollon and Diener, 2006). Salmela-Aro and Nurmi (2007) reported no significant relationship between changes in self-esteem and job satisfaction, but self-esteem level predicted job satisfaction ten years later. Scollon and Diener (2006), on the other hand, found changes over time in neuroticism as well as extraversion to be correlated with changes in job satisfaction. Similarly, Wu and Griffin (2012) found a reciprocal relationship between CSE and job satisfaction: Over a period of ten years, mean levels and changes in job satisfaction predicted CSE, and CSE predicted mean levels and changes in job satisfaction. As there is an agreement that job satisfaction is influenced both by personal and by job aspects, however, studies that investigate changes in both over time as predictors of job satisfaction can shed more light on the processes involved. Focusing on a broad personality construct (CSE) and on one of the most important predictors of job satisfaction (control) seems especially suited for such an investigation; to the best of our knowledge, no previous study has related changes in these variables as predictors of job satisfaction. 1.4. Summary and hypotheses In sum, both theory and some, but limited, research suggest that changes over time in work related variables and in personality may be predictors of job satisfaction (Boswell et al., 2005, Boswell et al., 2009, Semmer and Schallberger, 1996 and Vandenberghe et al., 2011). Because young workers are still in the process of adjusting to their work environment, they could be an especially appropriate sample for analyzing the changes occurring over time in CSE and job control, how these changes are related to one another, and how they predict job satisfaction (De Witte et al., 2007 and Elfering et al., 2000). Previous research showed that job control is likely to increase over time, especially for young workers (Elfering et al., 2007). Over time they may be seen as deserving to be trusted and therefore be granted more autonomy and responsibility. Also, with increasing experience, young workers may feel more self-assured and therefore be more inclined to ask for more autonomy. Simultaneously, young workers have to master environmental changes such as leaving home, getting involved in serious relationships, and entering the labor market, which may foster changes in trait-like variables such as CSE (e.g., Robins et al., 2001 and Srivastava et al., 2003). We therefore hypothesize: H1. Job control (H1a) and CSE (H1b) increase over time. Due to (self-)selection effects, the initial levels of job control and CSE are likely to be related to each other (Frese, 1982, Judge et al., 2000 and Semmer and Schallberger, 1996), implying that young workers with positive self-evaluations tend to perceive their job control as high, and vice versa. We therefore hypothesize: H2. The initial levels (intercept) of job control (H2a) and CSE (H2b) are positively correlated with each other. Job control allows young workers to test their skills and to feel competent if tasks are successfully mastered (Cunnien et al., 2009 and Roberts et al., 2003). Successful experiences at work may foster positive self-evaluations. In turn, positive self-evaluations encourage striving for responsibility and autonomy and testing one's skills (cf. Lyubomirsky, King, & Diener, 2005). These considerations lead to Hypothesis 3: H3. The growth rates of job control (H3a) and CSE (H3b) correlate positively with each other. Both on theoretical grounds, and based on research on levels of situational and dispositional indicators of job satisfaction, we assume that increases in job control and CSE are positively related to job satisfaction: H4. Growth rates of both job control (H4a) and CSE (H4b) positively predict job satisfaction in the last year of observation.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
It is well established that job satisfaction is related to CSE (Judge et al., 2008 and Srivastava et al., 2010) and to control (Humphrey et al., 2007). Our results suggest that change in these variables not only predicts job satisfaction over and beyond initial levels; it also seems to be more important as predictor than initial level. But the implications of our results go beyond emphasizing the relative importance of change, suggesting that change is a prerequisite for improving, or at least maintaining, one's initial level of satisfaction. Given that we know rather little about questions such as “Is a given level of control worth less if it has not improved during a certain period?”, our study adds to the existing knowledge about the role of change versus level. Such questions, and the related issue of changing aspirations as people gain experience should receive more attention in future research and theory. As is often the case in latent growth analyses (cf. Chan and Schmitt, 2000 and Salmela-Aro and Nurmi, 2007), we found a negative association between the initial level and the growth rate per year for both, job control and CSE. These results point to a certain degree of “harmonization”, in that differences between people become smaller. While these effects likely reflect regression to the mean, a substantive interpretation also suggests itself. Changing the job environment, and personal development, for instance by learning, are mechanisms that help people to achieve a fit between their needs and goals and their work environment. In terms of practical implications, our results not only support the widely accepted notion that granting control to employees is likely to have positive effects on job satisfaction. They also suggest that granting control initially may not suffice over time; rather, as employees gain experience, an increase in autonomy seems warranted; such an increase seems necessary not only to further increase their job satisfaction, but actually to prevent job satisfaction from declining. At the same time, the concomitant increase in CSE is important, and it may be a prerequisite for these positive effects. Control may turn into a stressor if people do not have the personal resources needed to deal with the challenge posed by control, for instance in terms of self-efficacy (Meier et al., 2008 and Schaubroeck and Merrit, 1997); an emphasis is therefore needed on granting control but at the same time supporting employees in developing the personal resources needed to effectively use that control (cf. Cohrs et al., 2006). If that can be done effectively, job satisfaction is likely to be high, with all positive implications that have been found for individuals as well as organizations.