Commitment as a Mediator between Psychological Climate & Citizenship Behaviour

Article excerpt

Native Mores & Behavioural Aspects of Business

The increasing global spread of business and the greater participation of multi-national corporations (MNCs) in developing markets call for focusing attention towards management practices in different parts of the world (Budhwar 2003, Napier & Vu 1998). It is necessary to examine the cultural factors that affect the behavioural features of managerial effectiveness in the organizational context (Biswas 2006). This viewpoint is further corroborated by an earlier study by Zucher (1968) wherein it is mentioned that in a cross-cultural context it is necessary to study behavioural constructs especially with the continuous growth of worldwide commercial operations.

With reference to India in particular, it was observed that its national culture has a rich heritage which is helpful in clarifying different human actions. These cultural facets are deeply ingrained in the individual psyche and are relevant in positive cognition and affect of individuals at the workplace (Rao & Abraham 2003). The indigenous culture of India has been quick to accept alien customs and mores while preserving its distinctive values and rules (Biswas et al. 2006). This has established the Indian social order as a classic example of the oriental world. In terms of socio-cultural ethos therefore, India stands as a leader in establishing the norms and practices that dominate managerial practices in the contemporary borderless business environment (Ralston, Holt, Terpstra & KaiCheng 1997). In a cross-cultural framework, the above discussion indicates that the stature of India is quite elevated in the global socio-economic map. Varma, Budhwar, Biswas & Toh (2005) noted that India's traditional cultural systems are acting as fulcrum of the South East Asian business environment.

England and Lee (1974) noted that during periods of environmental turmoil, societies in emergent economies such as India tend to follow a path that leads to stability. This further implies that in a bid to maintain internal homogeneity and acclimatize to the external changes, society focuses on retaining certain behavioural aspects that are indigenous and at the same time give way to a certain level of novelty. Given that organizations operate within the domain of societal norms and values, it is evident that behavioural aspects of managing organizations call for further study. The present study examines the interrelationship between three behavioural constructs namely, psychological climate, affective commitment, and organizational citizenship behaviour. More specifically, the present study investigates the causal impact of psychological climate on organizational citizenship behaviour through affective commitment which acts as the mediator.

Theoretical Background

Before the introduction of the New Economic Policy (NEP) in 1991, the Indian business environment was discernible through the dominance of firms in the manufacturing sector. These firms, whether public or private, were usually large organizations and were marked by mechanistic processes and rigid practices (Biswas & Varma 2007). In fact, firms belonging to the service sector such as, educational institutions, healthcare organizations, and media and communications were basically owned by the state. This was a direct consequence of Nehruvian welfare philosophy that emphasized pluralistic utilitarianism. The fall out of such a socio-political arrangement was the lack of emphasis on individual behavioural aspirations (Varma et al 2005). Thus, till the privatization of the Indian economy in the early 1990s, Indian organizations were extremely bureaucratic and were characterized by one-way flow of decision making from the top to the bottom. Indeed, Hofstede (2001) observed that such managerial philosophies and practices are not uncommon in social cultures that are dominated by collectivism and high power distance norms. …


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