Research Sources -Link to Results LO21975

John Gunkler (
Thu, 24 Jun 1999 07:49:25 -0500

Replying to LO21939 --

Kathy (and others),

As much as everyone wants to believe that there is a direct connnection
between things such as job satisfaction/morale/etc. and productivity
(etc.), many earlier (1970's and '80's I think) research efforts on "job
enrichment" failed to consistently show this link.

Why? Some speculation was that there is a factor missing, something
having to do with commitment to the task or organization for whom the
person is to be productive. So, you get a two-by-two matrix of
possibilities by crossing high and low values of the "morale-type" factor
with high and low values of the "commitment-type" factor.

If you follow that, then look at the four boxes and you'll see the
trouble. High morale coupled with high commitment shows the results you
want to see -- high productivity. But high morale coupled with low
commitment shows low productivity -- these are the "just having a great
time here, love picking up my paycheck" people. That screws up the
one-to-one relationship you hoped to see between morale and productivity.

To make it worse, look at the remaining two boxes. Here, low morale and
low commitment do exactly what you want -- lead to low productivity. But
high commitment but low morale can sometimes lead to high productivity
(think of the rebels or renegades who actively dislike the organization
for not being as good as it should be, but are dedicated to its outcomes
nonetheless.) Once again sometimes messing up the correlation.

I am unaware of anyone who actually checked out this speculation in research
(it would probably have been done in the late 1980's or early this decade.)
Can anyone help us here?


"John Gunkler" <>

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