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JOURNAL OF RESEARCH IN NATIONAL DEVELOPMENT VOLUME 6 NO 2, DECEMBER, 2008

THE INFLUENCE OF ORGANIZATIONAL CLIMATE AND CULTURE ON WORKERS’ JOB SATISFACTION AND COMMITMENT

Dr.  Olabanji E. Obadara
Department of Educational Management
Tai Solarin University of Education, Ijebu-Ode, Nigeria

Abstract
This study examines the influence of organizational climate and culture on workers’ job satisfaction and commitment. It measures organizational climate and culture as a combined construct. The study therefore determines how this variable could predict workers’ job satisfaction and commitment. Descriptive survey design was used for the study. The study drew the sample of 10 universities in the south west Nigeria, five state owned and five federal owned, 70 lecturers that comprised Lecturer II and above and 30 non teaching staff from each university, which amounted to 1000 respondents. The proportionate stratified random sampling was used to select the sample. The study developed and used three sets of questionnaire tagged “Organizational Climate and Culture Questionnaire (OCCQ)”, “Workers’ Job Satisfaction Questionnaire (WJSQ)”, and Organizational Commitment Questionnaire (OCQ)” with correlation coefficient (r) of 0.77, 0.68, and 0.71 respectively. The inferential statistic of multiple regression was used for the analysis, while the null hypotheses generated for the study were tested at .05 level of significance. The findings revealed that organizational climate and culture significantly influenced both workers’ job satisfaction and commitmen, while its influence on workers’ job performance is the most potent followed by that of workers’ commitment. Finally, the study concluded that organization managements should provide conducive organizational climate and culture that will cater for the welfare of workers and encourage their satisfaction and commitment to the achievement of educational goals.

Keywords: Job satisfaction; commitment; organistional climate; affective


Introduction
Organization is established and structured to pursue certain goals. The most important of these goals is increased productivity in terms of quality of service delivery. Besides, both workers and employers who interact with one another within an organization are aware that they are pursuing this corporate goal. All the components of the organization should be coordinated and the personnel in particular should enjoy the sense of belonging and co-operation thereby committed towards accomplishing this goal.

Organizational commitment is defined as an employee’s level of identification and involvement in the organization (Mullins, 1999). Meyer and Allen (1997) defined organizational commitment as a psychological state that characterizes the employee’s relationship with the organization with its implications for the decision to continue membership in the organization. According to Meyer and Allen’s (1997) three-component model of commitment, there are three “mind sets” which each characterizes an employee’s commitment to the organization: affective, continuance and normative commitment.
Affective commitment refers to employees’ perception of the emotional attachment or identification with the organization. Continuance commitment refers to employees’

perception of the cost of leaving the organization to another place. Normative commitment is the employees’ perception of their normal obligation to the organization. While Mowday, Porter, & Steers (1982) saw organizational commitment as a strong belief in an organization’s goals, and values, a willingness to exert considerable effort on behalf of an organization and a strong desire to remain a member of the organization. Mowday, Steers, and dan Porter (1979) therefore suggested that employees who exhibit high organizational commitment are happier at their work, spend less time away from their jobs and are less likely to leave the organization. Some researchers even found that organizational commitment is a function of several variables such as job satisfaction, motivation, participative decision making, organizational support, financial reward, communication, promotion prospects, and leadership styles (Alarape and Akinlabi, 2000; Brown, 2003; Salami and  Omole, 2005).

It is important to make some distinctions between climate and culture. First, climate and culture are both important aspects of the overall context, environment or situation. Culture tends to be shared by all or most members of some social groups; is something that older members usually try to pass on to younger members; shapes behaviour and structures perceptions of the world. Cultures are often studied and understood at a national level, such as the Nigerian or French culture. Culture includes deeply held values, beliefs and assumptions, symbols, heroes and heroines, and rituals. Culture can be examined at an organizational level as well. The main distinction between organizational and national culture is that people can choose to join a place of work, but are usually born into a national culture. Organizational cultures are generally deep and stable.

Climate, on the other hand, is often defined as the recurring patterns of behaviour, attitudes and feelings that characterise life in the organization (Isaksen & Ekvall, 2007).

Reichers and Schneider (1990) define organizational climate as "the shared perception of the way things are around here" (p.22). Although culture and climate are related, climate often proves easier to assess and change. At an individual level of analysis the concept is called individual psychological climate. These individual perceptions are often aggregated or collected for analysis and understanding at the team or group level, or the divisional, functional, or overall organizational level.

Organizational climate, however, proves to be hard to define. There are two especially intractable and related difficulties: how to define climate and how to measure it effectively on different levels of analysis. Furthermore there are several approaches to the concept of climate, of which two in particular have received substantial patronage: the cognitive schema approach and the shared perception approach.

The first approach regards the concept of climate as an individual perception and cognitive representation of the work environment. From this perspective climate assessments should be conducted at an individual level. The second approach emphasizes the importance of shared perceptions as underpinning the notion of climate (Anderson & West, 1998; Mathisen & Einarsen 2004). It is important to realize that from these two approaches, there is no “best” approach and they actually have a great deal of overlap. Organizational Climate (sometimes known as Corporate Climate) is the process of quantifying the “culture” of an organization.

Organizational climate refers to a set of measurable properties of the work environment, that are perceived by the people who live and work in it, and that influence their motivation and behaviour. Climate characteristics that have been determined to significantly impact a company’s bottom line are: flexibility, responsibility, standards, rewards, clarity and team commitment.

Researchers like Hart, Griffin, Wearing & Cooper (1996) have pursued the shared perception model of Organizational Climate. Their model identifies the variables which moderate an organization’s ability to mobilise its workforce in order to achieve organizational goals and maximize performance.

However, organizational culture can also be defined from multiple theoretical perspectives. Of the five uses of the term that Smircich and Calás (1987) differentiate, organizational culture is defined here to refer to culture as "shared knowledge," that is, an all-pervasive system of cognitive structures, meanings or understandings that accompany the behaviours and practices of members of a particular organization and that they share and help create. This usage coincides with what they call an interpretive perspective (1987:234, 239-241): "The symbolic constitutes what is taken for granted as organizational life. Culture and communication are vehicles through which reality is constituted in organizational contexts." Their "interpretive" definition is similar to the "structuralist" approach in Riley's study (1983) of two firms. She identifies the deep structures of meaning within an organization as generative rules and resources that produce and reproduce regularized relationships and that constitute in their instantiation the political (i.e., competitive) culture of an organization. Of course, organizational cultures overlap. Cross-cutting organizational identities and constraints produce role conflict, status inconsistency and cognitive dissonance, according to "reference group" theory.

Job satisfaction is an important criterion for the success of an organization. It is closely associated with job turnover and life satisfaction. Job satisfaction is defined in various contexts by various authors. According to Locke (1990), job satisfaction is an emotional reaction that "results from the perception that one's job fulfills or allows the fulfillment of one's important job values,

providing and to the degree that those values are congruent with one's needs". Human needs are subjected to constant change but the job values are relatively more stable. Someone who is satisfied with his/her job may not experience the same emotion if there is a change in his/her needs. Job satisfaction is the degree to which an individual feels positively about the various facets of the job task, the work setting and the relationship with co-worker (Schermerhorn, Hunt, Osborn, 2000). Job satisfaction is an employee’s internalized appraisal of one’s job, job experiences, or job situation (Locke, 1990).

Most authors state job satisfaction as resulting from the fulfillment of needs through the activities one performs at one's job and from the context in which the work is performed. It is very hard to fulfill one's need as it keeps changing quite often. McFarlin and Rice (1992) conceive of job satisfaction as resulting from the size of the discrepancy that one perceived; if any, between what he expects to receive from his work and what he perceives he is receiving. Job satisfaction is defined as a pleasurable or positive emotional state resulting from the appraisal of one’s job or job experience. It is a result of employee’s perception of how well their job provides those things that are viewed as important (Luthan, 1998).

Pinder (1997) suggests that the satisfaction results from at least three general types of perceptions. First, the person must see that there is a positive increment in the level of desired outcomes he/she receives. Second, the shorter the period over which the improvement occurs, the greater is the feeling of satisfaction (called the notion of velocity). Third, positive increase in the rate of positive change also adds to the sensation of satisfaction. He considers employee values, which are defined as those things that might be considered as conducive to his or her welfare. Pinder (1997) states satisfaction or dissatisfaction resulting from comparison that a person makes between herself and others around her. From the above

definitions we find that job satisfaction is associated with needs and the values.
This present study has examined the impact of climate and culture on workers’ job satisfaction and commitment, and defined climate and culture as a combined construct.
Purpose of the Study

The purpose of this paper is to empirically establish the relationship between organizational climate and culture, and workers’ job satisfaction, and commitment with the aim of using its findings to make useful recommendations for the improvement of workers’ job satisfaction and commitment towards achievement of organizational goals.

Literature Review
A large number of studies have consistently demonstrated relationships between psychological climate and individual-level outcomes such as satisfaction, commitment, performance and stress. Likewise, a number of cross-level studies have consistently demonstrated positive relationships between unit or organizational climate and individual outcomes such as performance, satisfaction, commitment, involvement and accidents (Ostroff & Schmitt, 2003). Also, some studies  have found a very strong link between Organisational Climate and employee reactions such as stress levels, absenteeism and commitment and participation (Rafferty & Rose, 2001; Rose, Douglas, Griffin, & Linsley, 2002; Rose & Waterhouse, 2004). A study by Bushell (2007) has found that Hart, Griffin, Wearing, & Cooper’s (1996) Organizational Climate model accounts for at least 16% single-day sick leave and 10% separation rates in one organization. Other studies support the links between organizational climate and many other factors such as employee retention, job satisfaction, well-being, and readiness for creativity, innovation and change. Hunter, Bedell and Mumford (2007) have reviewed numerous approaches to climate assessment for creativity. They found that those climate studies that were based on well-developed, standardized instruments produced far higher

effect sizes than did studies that were based on locally developed measures.

Organizational culture is defined as the organizational norms and expectations regarding how people behave and how things are done in an organization (Glisson & James, 2002; Verbeke, Volgering, & Hessels, 1998) and includes implicit norms, values, shared behavioral expectations, and assumptions that guide the behaviours of members of a work unit (Cooke & Rousseau, 1988). Organizational culture is important because shared beliefs and norms affect employee perceptions, behaviours, and emotional responses to the workplace. For example, culture has been found to influence organizational climate and provider attitudes including work attitudes (Aarons & Sawitzky, 2006; Carmazzi & Aarons, 2003; Glisson & Hemmelgarn, 1998; Glisson & James, 2002), as well as employee behaviours that contribute to the success or failure of an organization (Ashkanasy, Wilderom, & Peterson, 2000). Organizational climate represents a global impression of one’s organization and personal impact of the work environment, which influences the individual’s work behaviours and job-related attitudes (Pritchard & Karasick, 1973). Organizational climate includes employee perceptions of and affective response to the workplace and work tasks.

More positive organizational climates are characterized by low levels of emotional exhaustion and depersonalization. Emotional exhaustion is the extent to which an employee feels fatigued or burned out due to the demands of their job. Depersonalization is the extent to which an employee feels hardened, distant, or removed from those they serve (Lawler, Hall, & Oldman, 1974). Along with a diminished sense of personal accomplishment, these constructs have been conceptualized as components of burnout (Maslach, Schaufeli, & Leiter, 2001).

Emotional exhaustion and depersonalization have also been examined in relation to staff

turnover (Drake & Yadama, 1996). However, there is precedent for specifying emotional exhaustion and depersonalization as indictors for organizational climate (Glisson & James, 2002) and, in particular, suboptimal organizational climate. Organizational culture and climate have been found to be distinct, multi-dimensional constructs (Glisson & James, 2002). While culture reflects behaviours, norms, and expectations, organizational climate reflects workers’ perceptions of and emotional responses to the characteristics of the work environment (Glisson & James, 2002). Organizational level constructs of culture and climate are proposed to influence individual level attitudes (e.g., work attitudes) and behaviour (e.g., turnover). Such cross level effects, linking organizational constructs to individual outcomes, have been supported in previous studies (Glisson & James, 2002; Schoenwald, Sheidow, Letourneau, & Liao, 2003).

Organizational culture and climate are both crucial characteristics of organizations that influence employees’ attitudes (Aarons & Sawitzky, 2006; Carmazzi & Aarons, 2003; Glisson & Hemmelgarn, 1998) and work attitudes, in particular, predict staff turnover (Van Breukelen, Van Der Vlist, & Steensma, 2004). Work attitudes include employee evaluations and opinions of jobs and their commitment to the organization (Verquer, Beehr, & Wagner, 2003). Two of the most commonly assessed dimensions of work attitudes are job satisfaction and organizational commitment (Glisson & Durick, 1988). Work attitudes have been shown to be associated with organizational culture and climate, employee behaviours, and turnover.

Specifically, job satisfaction and organizational commitment are significant determinants of turnover (Mowday, Porter and Steers, 1982). In separate regression analyses, organizational culture and climate have both been found to influence an employee’ job satisfaction and organizational commitment (Glisson & James, 2002; Morris & Bloom,

2002). Constructive culture has been found to be an important predictor of work attitudes, and work groups with constructive cultures have more positive work attitudes (Glisson & James, 2002). More positive organizational climates also predict more positive work attitudes (Glisson & James, 2002; Morris & Bloom, 2002). Employees working in organizations with more positive cultures and climates are more likely to be satisfied with their jobs and more committed to their organizations and, hence, should be less likely to leave.

Studies relating to employees’ commitment have been extensively conducted by various scholars. Various definitions have been given for employees’ commitment. These include an effective response by an employee towards the whole organization (Martin & Bennett, 1996). Organizational commitment may also be defined as a global attitude which can influence an individual’s reaction towards his or her organization (McCaul, Hinsz, dan Mc Kaul, 1995).

Following a study by Mowday, Steers and dan Porter (1979), the concept of organisational commitment can be divided into three important aspects: (a) belief in and acceptance of an organization’s goals and values, (b) willingness to strive harder to develop an organization by being part of the organization, (c) willingness to continue working and be loyal to the organization. The need for high organisational commitment is an important issue in any organization. This is because an employee who is highly committed towards his or her organization can be said to be productive, stable, and always strive towards fulfilling their organization’s needs as opposed to those who are less committed (Larkey & Morrill, 1995). Studies on job commitment have used various variables such as individual’s background, organization, employer, work, and job satisfaction. The findings by Aizzat, Ramayah, Mohamad, and Seow (2003) reveal that marital status (unmarried) qualification (degree) and pay

have negative relationships with commitment towards organization. Organizational commitment is also seen as having a direct relationship with low employee turn over and productivity (Bateman and Strasser, 1984).

 

Research Hypotheses
Ho1:  There is no significant relationship between organizational culture and climate, and job
satisfaction, and workers’ commitment.
Ho2:  There is no significant relationship between organizational culture and climate, and job
satisfaction.
Ho3: There is no significant relationship between organizational culture and climate and workers’commitment.

Methodology
Descriptive survey design was used for the study. The study drew the sample of 10 universities in the south west Nigeria, five state owned and five federal owned, 70

 

lecturers that comprised Lecturer II and above and 30 non teaching staff from each university, which amounted to 1000 respondents. The proportionate stratified random sampling was used to select the sample.

The study developed and used three sets of questionnaire tagged “Organizational Climate and Culture Questionnaire (OCCQ)”, “Workers’ Job Satisfaction Questionnaire (WJSQ)”, and Organizational Commitment Questionnaire (OCQ)” with correlation coefficient (r) of 0.77, 0.68, and 0.71 respectively.   The study used multiple regression analysis for the data analysis. While the null hypotheses formulated for the study were tested at .05 level of significance.

Results and Discussion
The results of the study are presented according to the hypotheses generated for the study.

Ho1:  There is no significant relationship between organizational culture and climate, and job satisfaction, and workers’ commitment.


Table 1: Regression Analysis of Organizational Climate and Culture on Workers’ Job   Satisfaction, and Commitment

ffsgfsfsfgs        R               R Square        Adjusted R         Standard Error of
                                               Square                the Estimate

                                        
    .652             .462                   .456                       9.2182

                                              F (2,997) = 4.363 (p<0.05)


Table 1 above revealed that organizational climate and culture on workers’ job satisfaction and commitment. The Table shows a coefficient of multiple regression (R) of .652 of organizational climate and culture on workers’ job satisfaction and commitment. It shows the multiple regression square (R2) of .462 and multiple regression square (R2) of .456 (adjusted). It means that about 46.2% of the variance of the workers’ job satisfaction and commitment is explained by organizational climate and culture. The observed F-ratio is 4.363 (significant at the 0.05 level). Due to this result, the null hypothesis, which states that, “There is no significant relationship between organizational culture and climate, and job satisfaction, and workers’ commitment” is rejected. This significant F-value is an indication that the combination of organizational climate and culture in contributing to workers’ job

satisfaction and commitment could not have occurred by chance.

 

Ho2: There is no significant relationship between organizational culture and climate, and job satisfaction


Table 2: Parameter Estimate of Organizational Climate and Climate on Workers’ Job   Satisfaction, and Commitment

fgfgfgfgfgsf                                  Unstandardized                Standardized  
sgfgsf                                    Coefficients                     Coefficients
                                                   Standard
Variable                       B              Error                 Beta                        t             Sig.

Workers’ Job
Satisfaction               .596             .132                    .081                   2.342      .005*

Workers’
Commitment             .242             .114                    .102                   2.429      .002*

 

(Constant)               11.113           2.203                                            3.169      .000

                                                   * Significant at p<0.05


Table 2 shows the relative contribution of organization climate and culture to the prediction of workers’ job satisfaction, and workers’ commitment. This table has shown the results of both hypotheses 2 and 3. The standardized regression weights associated with these variables reveal the contribution of organizational climate and culture on workers’ job satisfaction (b = .081), and workers’ commitment (b = .102). The values of the standardized regression weights associated with these constructs indicate that the contribution on workers’ job satisfaction is the most potent contribution followed by workers’ commitment.

The result of the present study indicate that employees working in organizations with more positive cultures and climates are more likely to be satisfied with their jobs and more committed to their organizations and, hence, should be less likely to leave. This result is in agreement with Lawler, Hall, & Oldman (1974), Drake & Yadama (1996) and Maslach, Schaufeli, & Leiter (2001) who observed that more positive organizational climates are characterized by low levels of emotional exhaustion and depersonalization, that is, the extent to which an employee feels fatigued or burned out due to the demands of their job, and the extent to which an employee feels hardened, distant, or removed from those they serve. This present result also corroborates Glisson & James (2002) and Morris & Bloom (2002) who found that both organizational culture and climate influence an employee’s job satisfaction and organizational commitment.

Conclusion
In conclusion, findings from this study have shown that positive organizational climate and culture significantly influences workers’ job satisfaction and commitment. The happier people are within their job, the more satisfied they are said to be. Since the employees that are happier at their work, spend less time away from their jobs and are less likely to leave the organization, a work environment that accommodates the needs and aspirations of

workers will definitely attract their commitment. Therefore, organization managements should provide conducive organizational climate and culture that will cater for the welfare of the workers and encourage their satisfaction to improve organizational commitment.

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