Job Satisfaction - Introduction
The father of scientific
management Taylor's (1911) approach to job satisfaction was based on a most
pragmatic & essentially pessimistic philosophy that man is motivation by money
alone. That the workers are essentially 'stupid & phlegmatic' & that they
would be satisfied with work if they get higher economic benefit from it. But
with the passage of time Taylor's solely monetary approach has been changed to
a more humanistic approach. It has come a long way from a simple explanation
based on money to a more realistic but complex approach to job satisfaction.
New dimensions of knowledge are added every day & with increasing
understanding of new variables & their inter play, the field of job
satisfaction has become difficult to comprehend.
The term job satisfaction was
brought to limelight by Hoppock (1935). He reviewed 32 studies on job
satisfaction conducted prior to 1933 & observed that job satisfaction is a
combination of psychological, physiological & environmental circumstances that
cause a person to say. 'I am satisfied with my job'. Locke defines job
satisfaction as a "pleasurable or positive emotional state resulting from the
appraisal of one's job or job experiences". To the extent that a person's job
fulfils his dominant need & is consistent with his expectations & values, the
job will be satisfying.
Job Satisfaction - Theory
One way to define satisfaction
may be to say that it is the end state of feeling. The word 'end' emphasises
the fact that the feeling is experienced after a task is accomplished or an
activity has taken place whether it is highly individualistic effort of
writing a book or a collective endeavour of constructing a building. These
activities may be minute or large. But in all cases, they satisfy a certain
need. The feeling could be positive or negative depending upon whether need is
satisfied or not & could be a function of the effort of the individual on one
hand & on the other the situational opportunities available to him.
This can be better understood by
taking example of a foreman in an engineering industry. He has been assigned
the task to complete a special order by a certain, deadline. Person may
experience positive job satisfaction because he has been chosen to complete
the task. It gives him a special status & feeling that he has been trusted and
given a special task, he likes such kind of rush job and it may get him extra
wages. The same could be the sources of his dissatisfaction if he does not
like rush work, has no need for extra wages. Each one of these variables lead
to an end state of feeling, called satisfaction.
Sinha (1974) defines job
satisfaction an 'a reintegration of affect produced by individual's perception
of fulfillment of his needs in relation to his work & the situations
Theories of Job - Satisfaction :
There are 3 major theories of job
(i) Herzberg's Motivation -
(ii) Need fulfilment theory.
(iii) Social reference - group
Herzberg's Motivation - Hygiene
This theory was proposed by
Herzberg & his assistants in 1969. On the basis of his study of 200 engineers
and accountants of the Pittsburgh area in the USA, he established that there
are two separate sets of conditions (and not one) which are responsible for
the motivation & dissatisfaction of workers. When one set of conditions
(called 'motivator') is present in the organisation, workers feel motivated
but its absence does not dissatisfy them. Similarly, when another set of
conditions (called hygiene factors) is absent in the organisation, the workers
feel dissatisfied but its presence does not motivate them. The two sets are
unidirectional, that is, their effect can be seen in one direction only.
According to Herzberg following
factors acts as motivators:
• Work itself,
• Possibility of growth, &
Hygiene factors are :
• Company policy &
• Technical supervision,
• Inter-personal relations with
supervisors, peers & Subordinates,
• Job security,
• Personal life,
• Working Conditions, &
Herzberg used semi-structured
interviews (the method is called critical incident method). In this technique
subjects were asked to describe those events on the job which had made them
extremely satisfied or dissatisfied. Herzberg found that events which led
people to extreme satisfaction were generally characterised by 'motivators' &
those which led people to extreme dissatisfaction were generally characterized
by a totally different set of factors which were called 'hygiene factors'.
Hygiene factors are those factors
which remove pain from the environment. Hence, they are also known as job -
environment or job - context factors. Motivators are factors which result in
psychological growth. They are mostly job - centered. Hence they are also
known as job - content factors.
The theory postulated that
motivators and hygiene factors are independent & absence of one does not mean
presence of the other. In pleasant situations motivators appear more
frequently than hygiene factors while their predominance is reversed in
Need Fulfillment Theory :
Under the need-fulfillment theory
it is believed that a person is satisfied if he gets what he wants & the more
he wants something or the more important it is to him, the more satisfied he
is when he gets it & the more dissatisfied he is when he does not get it.
Needs may be need for personal achievement, social achievement & for
a) Need for personal achievement
Desires for personal career
development, improvement in one's own life standards, better education &
prospects for children & desire for improving one's own work performance.
b) Need for social achievement :
A drive for some kind of
collective success is relation to some standards of excellence. It is indexed
in terms of desires to increase overall productivity, increased national
prosperity, better life community & safety for everyone.
c) Need for influence :
A desire to influence other
people & surroundings environment. In the works situation, it means to have
power status & being important as reflected in initiative taking and
participation in decision making.
In summary, this theory tell us
that job satisfaction is a function of, or is positively related to the degree
to which one's personal & social needs are fulfilled in the job situation.
Social References - Group Theory
It takes into account the point
of view & opinions of the group to whom the individual looks for the guidance.
Such groups are defined as the 'reference-group' for the individual in that
they define the way in which he should look at the world and evaluate various
phenomena in the environment (including himself). It would be predicted,
according to this theory that if a job meets the interest, desires and
requirements of a person's reference group, he will like it & if it does not,
he will not like it.
A good example of this theory has
been given by C.L. Hulin. He measures the effects of community characteristics
on job satisfaction of female clerical workers employed in 300 different
catalogue order offices. He found that with job conditions held constant job
satisfaction was less among persons living in a well-to-do neighborhood than
among those whose neighborhood was poor. Hulin, thus provides strong evidence
that such frames of reference for evaluation may be provided by one's social
groups and general social environment.
To sum up, we can say, Job
satisfaction is a function of or is positively related to the degree to which
the characteristics of the job meet with approved & the desires of the group
to which the individual looks for guidance in evaluating the world & defining
Relationship among motivation,
attitude and job satisfaction :
Motivation implies the
willingness to work or produce. A person may be talented and equipped with all
kinds of abilities & skills but may have no will to work. Satisfaction, on the
other hand, implies a positive emotional state which may be totally unrelated
to productivity. Similarly in the literature the terms job attitude and job
satisfaction are used interchangeably. However a closer analysis may reveal
that perhaps, they measure two different anchor points. Attitudes are
predispositions that make the individual behave in a characteristic way across
They are precursors to behaviour
& determine its intensity and direction. Job satisfaction, on the other hand
is an end state of feeling which may influence subsequent behaviour. In this
respect, job attitude and job satisfaction may have something in common. But
if we freeze behaviour, attitude would initiate it which job satisfaction
would result from it.
Relationship Between Morale & Job
According to Seashore (1959),
morale is a condition which exists in a context where people are :
a) motivated towards high
b) want to remain with
c) act effectively in crisis.
d) accept necessary changes
without resentment or resistance.
e) actually promote the
interest of the organization and
f) are satisfied with their
According to this description of
morale, job satisfaction is an important dimension of morale itself.
Morale is a general attitude of
the worker and relates to group while job satisfaction is an individual
feeling which could be caused by a variety of factors including group. This
point has been summarized by Sinha (1974) when he suggests that industrial
morale is a collective phenomenon and job satisfaction is a distributed one.
In other words, job satisfaction refers to a general attitude towards work by
an individual works. On the other hand, morale is group phenomenon which
emerges as a result of adherence to group goals and confidence in the
desirability of these goals.
Relationship Between job
satisfaction and work behaviour :
Generally, the level of job
satisfaction seems to have some relation with various aspects of work
behaviour like absenteeism, adjustments, accidents, productivity and union
recognition. Although several studies have shown varying degrees of
relationship between them and job satisfaction, it is not quite clear whether
these relationships are correlative or casual. In other words, whether work
behaviour make him more positively inclined to his job and there would be a
lesser probability of getting to an unexpected, incorrect or uncontrolled
event in which either his action or the reaction of an object or person may
result in personal injury.
Job satisfaction and productivity
Experiments have shown that there
is very little positive relationship between the job satisfaction & job
performance of an individual. This is because the two are caused by quite
different factors. Job satisfaction is closely affected by the amount of
rewards that an individual derives from his job, while his level of
performance is closely affected by the basis for attainment of rewards. An
individual is satisfied with his job to the extent that his job provides him
with what he desires, and he performs effectively in his job to the extent
that effective performance leads to the attainment of what he desires. This
means that instead of maximizing satisfaction generally an organisation should
be more concerned about maximizing the positive relationship between
performance and reward. It should be ensured that the poor performers do not
get more rewards than the good performers. Thus, when a better performer gets
more rewards he will naturally feel more satisfied.
Job Satisfaction and absenteeism
One can find a consistent
negative relationship between satisfaction and absenteeism, but the
correlation is moderate-usually less than 0.40. While it certainly makes sense
that dissatisfied Sales Persons are more likely to miss work, other factors
have an impact on the relationship and reduce the correlation coefficient.
e.g. Organizations that provide liberal sick leave benefits are encouraging
all their Sales Persons, including those who are highly satisfied, to take
days off. So, outside factors can act to reduce the correlation.
Job Satisfaction and Turnover :
Satisfaction is also negatively
related to turnover, but the correlation is stronger than what we found for
absenteeism. Yet, again, other factors such as labour market conditions,
expectations about alternative job opportunities, and length of tenure with
the organization are important constraints on the actual decision to leave
one's current job.
Evidence indicates that an
important moderator of the satisfaction-turnover relationship is the Sales
Person's level of performance. Specifically, level of satisfaction is less
important in predicting turnover for superior performers because the
organization typically makes considerable efforts to keep these people. Just
the opposite tends to apply to poor performers. Few attempts are made by the
organization to retain them. So one could expect, therefore, that job
satisfaction is more important in influencing poor performers to stay than
Job Satisfaction and Adjustment :
It the Sales Person is facing
problems in general adjustment, it is likely to affect his work life. Although
it is difficult to define adjustment, most psychologists and organisational
behaviourists have been able to narrow it down to what they call neuroticism
Generally deviation from socially
expected behaviour has come to be identified as neurotic behaviour. Though it
may be easy to identify symptoms of neuroticism, it is very difficult to know
what causes. Family tensions, job tensions, social isolation, emotional
stress, fear, anxiety or any such sources could be a source of neuroticism.
Anxiety, on the other hand, has a
little more clearer base. It is generally seen as a mental state of vague fear
and apprehension which influences the mode of thinking. Anxiety usually shows
itself in such mental state as depression, impulsiveness, excessive worry and
nervousness. While everyone aspires for a perfect state of peace and
tranquility, the fact is that some anxiety is almost necessary for an
individual to be effective because it provides the necessary push for efforts
to achieve excellence.
Adjustment problems usually show
themselves in the level of job satisfaction. For long, both theorists and
practitioners have been concerned with Sales Persons' adjustment and have
provided vocational guidance and training to them to minimise it's impact on
work behaviour. Most literature, in this area, generally suggests a positive
relationship between adjustment and job satisfaction. People with lower level
of anxiety and low neuroticism have been found to be more satisfied with their
Determinants of Job Satisfaction
According to Abrahan A. Korman,
there are two types of variables which determine the job satisfaction of an
individual. These are :
1) Organisational variables ; and
2) Personal Variables.
Organisational Variable :
1) Occupational Level :
The higher the level of the job,
the greater is the satisfaction of the individual. This is because higher
level jobs carry greater prestige and self control.
2) Job Content :
Greater the variation in job
content and the less repetitiveness with which the tasks must be performed,
the greater is the satisfaction of the individual involved.
3) Considerate Leadership :
People like to be treated with
consideration. Hence considerate leadership results in higher job satisfaction
than inconsiderate leadership.
4) Pay and Promotional
All other things being equal
these two variables are positively related to job satisfaction.
5) Interaction in the work group
Here the question is : When is
interaction in the work group a source of job satisfaction and when it is not
? Interaction is most satisfying when -
(a) It results in the cognition
that other person's attitudes are similar to one's own. Since this permits the
ready calculability of the others behaviour and constitutes a validation of
one's self ;
(b) It results in being accepted
by others ; and
(c) It facilitates the
achievements of goals.
Personal Variables :
For some people, it appears most
jobs will be dissatisfying irrespective of the organisational condition
involved, whereas for others, most jobs will be satisfying. Personal variables
like age, educational level, sex, etc. are responsible for this difference.
(1) Age :
Most of the evidence on the
relation between age and job satisfaction, holding such factors as
occupational level constant, seems to indicate that there is generally a
positive relationship between the two variales up to the pre-retirement years
and then there is a sharp decrease in satisfaction. An individual aspires for
better and more prestigious jobs in later years of his life. Finding his
channels for advancement blocked, his satisfaction declines.
(2) Educational Level :
With occupational level held
constant there is a negative relationship between the educational level and
job satisfaction. The higher the education, the higher the reference group
which the individual looks to for guidance to evaluate his job rewards.
(3) Role Perception :
Different individuals hold
different perceptions about their role, i.e. the kind of activities and
behaviours they should engage in to perform there job successfully. Job
satisfaction is determined by this factor also. The more accurate the role
perception of an individual, the greater his satisfaction.
(4) Sex :
There is as yet no consistent
evidence as to whether women are more satisfied with their jobs than men,
holding such factors as job and occupational level constant. One might predict
this to be the case, considering the generally low occupational aspiration of
Some other determines of job
satisfaction are as follows:
(i) General Working Conditions.
(ii) Grievance handling
(iii) Fair evaluation of work
(iv) Job security.
(v) Company prestige.
(vi) Working hours etc.
How Sales Persons Can Express
Sales Person dissatisfaction can
be expressed in a number of ways. For example, rather than quit, Sales Persons
can complain, be insubordinate, steal organisational property, or shirk a part
of their work responsibilities. In the following figure, four responses are
given along to dimensions : Constructiveness / Destructiveness and Activity /
Passivity. These are defined as follow :
Exit : Behaviour
directed towards leaving the organisation. Includes looking for a new
position as well as resigning.
Voice : Actively and
constructively attempting to improve conditions includes suggesting
improvements, discussing problems with superiors, and some forms of union
Loyalty : Passively but
optimistically waiting for conditions to improve. Includes speaking up for the
organisation in the face of external criticism and trusting the organisation
and its management to 'do the right thing'.
Neglect : Passively allowing
the conditions to worsen. Includes chronic absenteeism or lateness, reduced
effort, and increased error rate.
Exit and neglect behaviours
encompass our performances variables-productivity, absenteeism and turnover.
But this model expands Sales Person response to include voice and loyalty,
constructive behaviours that allow individuals to tolerate unpleasant
situations or to revive satisfactory working conditions.
The importance of high job
The importance of job
satisfaction is obvious. Managers should be concerned with the level of job
satisfaction in their organisations for at least three reasons:
(1) There is clear evidence that
dissatisfied Sales Persons skip work more often and are more likely to resign
(2) It has been demonstrated that
satisfied Sales Persons have better health and live longer ; and
(3) Satisfaction on the job
carries over to the Sales Person's life outside the job.
Satisfied Sales Persons have
lower rate of both turnover and absenteeism. Specifically, satisfaction is
strongly and consistently negatively related to an Sales Person's decision to
leave the organisation. Although satisfaction and absence are also negatively
related, conclusions regarding the relationship should be more guarded.
An often overlooked dimension of
job satisfaction is its relationship to Sales Person health. Several studies
have shown that Sales Persons who are dissatisfied with their jobs are prone
to health setbacks ranging from headaches to heart disease. For managers, this
means that even if satisfaction did not lead to less voluntary turn over and
absence, the goal of a satisfied work force might be jutificable because it
would reduced medical costs and the premature loss of valued Sales Persons by
way of heart disease or strokes.
Job satisfaction's importance is
its spin off effect that job satisfaction has for society as a whole. When
Sales Persons are happy with their jobs, it improves their lives off the job.
In contrast, the dissatisfied Sales Person carries that negative attitude
Some benefits of job satisfaction
accure to every citizen in society. Satisfied Sales Persons are more likely to
be satisfied citizens. These people will hold a more positive attitude towards
life in general and make for a society of more psychologically healthy people.
So job satisfaction is very
important. For management, a satisfied work force translates into higher
productivity due to fewer disruptions caused by absenteeism or good Sales
Persons quitting, as well as into lower medical and life insurance costs.
Additionally, there are benefits for society in general. Satisfaction on the
job carries over to the Sales Person's off the job hours. So the goal of high
job satisfaction for Sales Persons can be defended in terms of both money and
Project Description :
Title : Project Report on Job Satisfaction of Employees
Project Description : MBA Project Report on Job Satisfaction of Employees Theory of Job Satisfaction, Relationship Between job satisfaction and work behaviour, productivity, absenteeism, Turnover, Adjustment & How Sales Persons Can Express Dissatisfaction
Pages : 73
Category : Project Report for MBA
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