The purpose of this paper was to examine the predictive power of each dimension of public service motivation (PSM) on job performance (JP) in a Taiwan sample.
The present study adopted a cross-sectional approach using a large-scale questionnaire survey in Taiwan (N=2,239). Participants from six utility sectors in two infrastructure-relevant ministries (Ministry of Transportation and Communications (MOTC) and Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA)), with heterogeneous sectors, were recruited, including representatives of the Taiwan Railways Administration (TRA), Chunghwa Post (CHP), Taiwan Power Company (TPC), CPC Corporation, Taiwan (CPC), Taiwan Sugar Corporation (TSC), and Taiwan Water Supply Corporation (TWSC). The sample consisted of 2,239 public employees from six public utilities.
Although the results suggest that the PSM observed in western society also exists in the Taiwanese public utilities context, the self-sacrifice (SS) and the compassion (COM) dimensions were unconfirmed. The research found that for all utilities SS was significantly negatively correlated with JP, while attraction to public policy making (APP) and commitment to public interests (CPI) were significantly positively correlated with performance. Moreover, CPI was the only dimension of PSM that consistently predicted employees’ JP across utilities.
First, the authors tested the theory using a limited sample of public employees from Taiwanese public utilities. The cross-sectional design does not offer a clear cause-and-effect relationship as examined in the current study. Data collected only from public utilities in Taiwanese sample may cause concerns for the generalisability of the present findings to other settings. Second, the data do not address the timevariant effects of PSM. Third, the current empirical findings are based on Taiwan’s public utilities. The observations should be interpreted with caution. A broader sample of employees would make the empirical results more generalisable beyond the country-specific findings.
Researchers should unpack the PSM and JP concepts and strategically explore subdimensional relationships, but these results offer new insights into the influence of such subdimensions on the link between PSM and JP. PSM in public utilities has great potential to enhance JP through high levels of CPI and APP. Furthermore, public utilities management staff should acknowledge the value of PSM for JP and, if applicable, praise it with substantial rewards.
The relationship of the PSM to JP in public utilities is much less studied, especially in Asian countries. Moreover, no study on employees in public utilities has previously used a Taiwan sample.
The author would like to thank National Science Council (NSC: 103-2914-I-134-003-A1) for the financial support.
Cheng, K. (2015), "Public service motivation and job performance in public utilities: An investigation in a Taiwan sample", International Journal of Public Sector Management, Vol. 28 No. 4/5, pp. 352-370. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJPSM-08-2015-0152Download as .RIS
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