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Values and psychological contracts in their relationship to commitment in the workplace

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Purpose ‐ This paper aims to examine relationships between individual-level values, psychological contracts, and six workplace commitment forms (organizational, occupational, group, work, job, union). It also seeks to examine whether individual values and psychological contracts relate to commitment forms when controlling for demographic variables. Design/methodology/approach ‐ A total of 313 employees of a major bank in Israel took part in this survey study. Findings ‐ The findings show that individual values, particularly those that represent more traditional and conservative values, relate to commitment forms above and beyond the effect of the demographic variables. The results also show strong positive relationships between relational contracts and all of the commitment forms. Research limitations/implications ‐ The study relied upon a snapshot-in-time survey design. Such a design consists of a single observation with no control group and limited control over the effects of variables. Also, only one professional group, bank employees, was examined here, and one should be cautious about generalizing the results to other occupational groups. Originality/value ‐ An important contribution of this study is the examination of the psychological contract in its relationship to commitment, a relationship thus far little examined in the literature. Another important contribution of this study is its exploration of how psychological contracts relate to other forms of commitment in addition to organizational commitment.

Keywords: Bank employees; Breach of contract; Individual values; Israel; Organizational commitment; Psychological contracts; Work commitment

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: November 29, 2011

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