Can a Work Organization Have An Attitude Problem? The Impact of Workplaces on Employee Attitude and Economic Outcomes
AbstractIn this study we examine whether a workplace can induce good or bad attitudes among its employees andwhether any such ¿workplace attitudes¿ affect economic outcomes. This study analyzes responses ofthousands of employees working in nearly two hundred branches to the emp loyee opinion survey of amajor US bank in 1994 and 1996. The results document the existence and persistence of a genuineworkplace effect in how workers view their jobs and organizations. Employee attitudes differ significantlyacross branches in ways that cannot be explained by branches randomly drawing workers from adistribution of workers with different innate attitudes. Furthermore, newly hired workers adopt thefavourable or unfavourable attitudes that the branches exhibited before they arrived. These workplaceattitudes also have significant effects on economic outcomes. Branches with less favourable attitudes havehigher turnover, lower levels of sales, and lower rates of sales growth than branches where workers havemore favourable attitudes. Less favourable branch attitudes are also a significant predictor of subsequentbranch closings. The study¿s results show that there are happy and unhappy workplaces, as well as happyand unhappy workers, with very different patterns of turnover and productivity in these workplaces.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Centre for Economic Performance, LSE in its series CEP Discussion Papers with number dp0636.
Date of creation: May 2004
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work motivation; workplace attitudes; organization; performance;
Other versions of this item:
- Ann Bartel & Casey Ichniowski & Morris Kleiner & Richard B. Freeman, 2004. "Can a work organization have an attitude problem? The impact of workplaces on employee attitude and economic outcomes," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 19953, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
- Ann Bartel & Richard Freeman & Casey Ichniowski & Morris M. Kleiner, 2003. "Can a Work Organization Have an Attitude Problem? The Impact of Workplaces on Employee Attitudes and Economic Outcomes," NBER Working Papers 9987, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- J0 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - General
- J2 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2005-01-02 (All new papers)
- NEP-BEC-2005-01-02 (Business Economics)
- NEP-CBE-2005-01-02 (Cognitive & Behavioural Economics)
- NEP-LAB-2005-01-02 (Labour Economics)
- NEP-LTV-2005-01-02 (Unemployment, Inequality & Poverty)
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