The relationship between individual values and psychological contracts

Aaron Cohen (Department of Public Administration, School of Political Science, University of Haifa, Haifa, Israel)

Journal of Managerial Psychology

ISSN: 0268-3946

Publication date: 24 March 2012



This paper seeks to examine whether individual values are related to perceptions of psychological contracts and psychological contract breach when justice perceptions are taken into account.


The study sample comprised staff employees of one of the largest banks in Israel. The sample included 311 employees in the head office of this bank. Data were collected from the employees over a period of about three months.


The findings show a modest relationship between individual values and perceptions of a relational type of psychological contract. The findings show weaker relationships between the values, perceived transactional‐type contracts, and perceptions of contract breach.

Research limitations/implications

The study relied upon a cross‐sectional design. Such a design consists of a single observation with no control groups, and so cannot be used to draw conclusions about causal relationships between the variables. In addition, the study examined only one professional group in one culture.

Practical implications

The significant relationship between conservation and self‐transcendence values and perceptions of relational‐type contracts suggests that organizations should take this into account when making hiring and human resource (HR) management decisions.


Few studies have examined how individual values relate to the type of psychological contract individuals perceive themselves involved in, or the way they perceive contract breach. Examining individual‐level values helps to elucidate the attitudes and behaviors of employees in the workplace.



Cohen, A. (2012), "The relationship between individual values and psychological contracts", Journal of Managerial Psychology, Vol. 27 No. 3, pp. 283-301.

Download as .RIS



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2012, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Please note you might not have access to this content

You may be able to access this content by login via Shibboleth, Open Athens or with your Emerald account.
If you would like to contact us about accessing this content, click the button and fill out the form.
To rent this content from Deepdyve, please click the button.