Impact of work related attitudes on turnover intention.

AuthorShukla, Archana


Extant studies have examined the extent in which the organizational commitments of professionals are linked to attitudes and affective reactions to the work environment and behavioral intentions such as intention to leave or actual turnover (Wilensky, 1965; Sorensen & Sorensen, 1974). Researchers have further argued that there is high cost associated with managerial failure to retain a body of well educated, effective employees (Cascio, 1991; Mirvis & Lawlwer, 1997). Sjoberg & Sverke (2000) find relationship between involvement, commitment and its interaction leading to turnover intentions which lead to turnover. Focusing on the work related attitudes such as job involvement (Kanungo, 1979), organizational commitment (Mowday, Steers & Porter, 1979), work involvement, job satisfaction as predictors of turnover, recent studies have called for a closer examination of the generality of withdrawal processes and their differentiation according to relevant work attitudes (e.g. Mowday, Koberg & McArthur, 1984).

Therefore, the basic premise of this paper is that identification of work related behavior either with the job or the organization will make employee less inclined to leave the job. Among professionals, this work related behavior is such a contingency factor, which despite its relevance, has not been closely examined. Attitude of professionals has frequently been suggested as an important determinant of the incongruence between turnover intention, and many studies have stressed the importance of understanding the antecedents of the same (Miller, 1967; Hall, 1968; Brief & Aldag, 1976; Tuma & Grimes, 1981). However, only a few studies have studied the above gap empirically, and much lesser in the context of developing nations (Sorensen & Sorensen, 1974; Tuma & Grimes 1981; Aranya et al., 1986). India is characterized by high power-distance values and a collectivistic culture (Hofstede, 1988;1991; Routamaa & Hautala, 2008) and Indian manager's mind set includes submissive, prone to emotional and personal dependence, fatalism, in-group/clan orientation, status/hierarchy/power consciousness, materialism and holistic orientation (Amba-Rao et al, 2000; Garg & Parikh, 1986; Pradhan, Mishra & Mathur, 2001; Sinha & Kanungo, 1997; Sinha & Pandey, 2007). Furthermore, societal context, cultural diversity and political factors affect interpersonal relations (Cooke & Saini, 2010; Ramaswami & Dreher, 2010; Baruch & Budhwar, 2006; Bhawuk, 2008; Budhwar & Khatri, 2001), which may influence individual's attitudes. Thus, the purpose of the present study is to construct from the available literature a path model which will reflect the work related attitudes and behaviors affecting intention to quit for the employee in the Indian context and test the same (Fig. 1).

Extant research suggests that attitudes towards the organization are more strongly related than attitudes toward the job to turnover intentions. Several authors (Peters, Bhagat & O'Connor, 1981; Shore & Martin, 1989; Williams & Hazer, 1986) reported organizational commitment had a stronger relationship with turnover intentions than did job satisfaction. Research also shows that organizational attitudes alone are related to turnover intentions (e.g. Angle & Perry, 1981; Mowday et al., 1979; Steers, 1977). In addition, a number of studies have shown a relationship between turnover intentions and overall job satisfaction (e.g. Angle & Perry, 1981; Mossholder, Bedeian & Armenakis, 1981). Perhaps job satisfaction is related to turnover intentions because of the high correlation between job and organizational attitudes (Angle & Perry, 1981; Mowday et al., 1979). Steel & Ovalle (1984) have discussed behavioral intentions and its expanding role in the field of turnover research. Their findings from the meta-analysis include four correlates of employee turnover: behavioral intentions, overall job satisfaction, work satisfaction and organizational commitment. In this study we take the turnover intentions as a dependent variable instead of turnover because we relate work related attitudes rather than exact reasons for turnover.

The relationship between job satisfaction and turnover intention has been studied extensively in the literature, and results generally show that job satisfaction results in reduced intentions to quit (Hom & Griffeth, 1995). Researchers have also analyzed job satisfaction as intrinsic and extrinsic job satisfaction. For instance, Tett & Meyer (1993) conducted a meta-analysis that included 178 samples from 155 related studies, and their findings suggested that intrinsic job satisfaction is negatively associated with turnover intentions. Previous work also indicates that while intrinsic and extrinsic job satisfaction, organizational commitment, and turnover intention are often highly interrelated (Dailey & Kirk, 1992; Herndon et al., 2001; Koh & Boo, 2001) and these two job satisfaction factors will often predict turnover intentions much more effectively than work commitment (Tett & Meyer, 1993).

Other studies have identified a negative relationship between intrinsic & extrinsic jobsatisfaction and turnover intention within different organizational contexts. In a sales studyexploring the impact of ethical climate on various role stress, attitudinal, and performance factors, Jaramillo et al. (2006) concluded that intrinsic job satisfaction was associated withdecreased intentions to leave a company. Jones et al. (1996) also determined that extrinsic job satisfaction was negatively related to sales professionals' likelihood of quitting in a broader study of leadership and job attitudes in the sales environment. Egan et al. (2004) concluded that information technology professionals' reduced turnover intentions were result of both intrinsic and extrinsic job satisfaction along with corporate culture that focused on learning.

These arguments suggest that individuals who report increased intrinsic and extrinsic satisfaction with their jobs will report significantly lower levels of intentions to leave their jobs as summarized in the following hypotheses:

Hypothesis 1a: There will be a significant negative relationship between intrinsic job satisfaction and turnover intention.

Hypothesis 1b: There will be...

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