Academic journal article Management Revue

Organizational Justice Perceptions and Employee Attitudes among Irish Blue Collar Employees: An Empirical Test of the Main and Moderating Roles of Individualism/Collectivism**

Academic journal article Management Revue

Organizational Justice Perceptions and Employee Attitudes among Irish Blue Collar Employees: An Empirical Test of the Main and Moderating Roles of Individualism/Collectivism**

Article excerpt

Prior research indicates that individualism - collectivism orientations (I/C) of employees, as well as organizational justice perceptions - procedural and distributive justice perceptions - influence the following employee attitudes: affective/normative commitments, pro-social behaviour, team loyalty, and tenure intent. Research also suggests that I/C orientations are related to justice perceptions with individualism orientation favouring equity principle and collectivism orientation favouring equality principles. Under the assumption that individualism orientation favours equity and procedural justice principles, we empirically test the main effects of I/C orientations and justice principles on employee attitudes. In addition, we also test whether I/C orientations moderate the relationships between justice perceptions and these employee attitudes. We tested these hypotheses using a survey methodology consisting of a sample of two-hundred and four employees from Ireland. Implications for research and practice are discussed.

Key words: Individualism/Collectivism Orientations, Organizational Justice Perceptions, Employee Attitudes

Introduction

Perceptions of justice or fairness in the workplace are widely recognised as influencing a variety of employee attitudes in organisational research (Adams 1965; Cropanzano/Greenberg 1997; Fields/Pang/Chiu 2000; Leventhal 1976; Ramamoorthy/ Flood 2004). Further, recent research indicates that organisational justice consists of three distinct but related components: distributive, procedural, and interactional justice. Distributive justice refers to the fairness of the decision outcome and is grounded in equity theory literature (Adams 1965). Procedural justice, on the other hand, relates to the perceived fairness of the decision-making procedures used to determine the distribution of the outcome and is based on literature concerning dispute resolution models (Kim/Mauborgne 1997; Leventhal 1976; Thibaut/Walker 1975). Finally, interactional justice refers to the perceived quality and fairness of the interactions between the employee and his/her supervisor (Ramamoorthy/Flood 2004). In particular, distributive justice and procedural justice have been shown to be consistently related to employee work-related attitudes and behaviours such as job satisfaction, organisational commitment, pro-social behaviours, tenure intent, team attachment, job performance and absenteeism (Colquitt/Conlon/Wesson/Porter/Ng 2001; Greenberg 1990; Lee/Pillutla/Law 2000; Phillips 2002).

Research on justice perceptions has been predominandy conducted in the Western, individualistic societies. Yet, research on cultural orientations (Gomez-Mejia/ Welbourne 1991) indicates that norms of justice principles are culture bound and that individualistic cultures emphasize equity whereas collectivistic cultures emphasize equality. That is, distributive justice perceptions may be different across individualistic versus collectivistic cultures. Specifically, adherence to equity norms based on pay-forperformance principles may be more compatible with individualism orientations and adherence to equality norms may be more compatible with collectivist orientations. While studies examining the effect of cultural differences on distributive justice norms are plentiful, studies examining differences in procedural justice perceptions across cultures are rather sparse. However, Ramamoorthy/Carroll (1998) proposed that formal performance appraisal procedures incorporating procedural justice principles may be more characteristic of individualistic cultures than collectivistic cultures. Further, they suggested that collectivistic cultures use informal mechanisms to manage employee performance (e.g., assigned performance goals, group goals as opposed to individual goals, feedback through peers or one's work-group or evaluation of performance by group members). To the extent performance appraisals form a critical aspect of reward allocations, such informal practices may be contradictory to the procedural justice principles espoused in individualistic, Western societies. …

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