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Book part
Publication date: 4 July 2003

Kathleen L Pereles

Although the organizational practice of using “contingent or non-traditional workers” has been escalating since the mid-1980s, only recently has research begun to focus on…

Abstract

Although the organizational practice of using “contingent or non-traditional workers” has been escalating since the mid-1980s, only recently has research begun to focus on the consequences of this practice. In unionized workplaces, labor leaders have begun to organize these workers. Although it is believed that contingent workers are responding positively to union organizing drives, little is known about the attitudes and behaviors of contingent workers as union members. Using the Union Commitment scale developed by Gordon, Philpot, Burt, Thompson and Spiller (1980), the research project reported here compares the Union Commitment of traditional faculty and three categories of adjunct faculty. The results reveal that there are no significant differences across these employee groups for the factors of Union Loyalty, Responsibility to the Union, Willingness to Work for the Union and Alienation from the Union. The implications of these findings for research and practice are discussed.

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Advances in Industrial & Labor Relations
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-76231-028-9

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Article
Publication date: 7 October 2013

Shelagh M.R. Campbell

The changing dynamics of current workplaces and the increasing employment of professionals in large bureaucratic organizations calls for a renewed examination of commitment

Abstract

Purpose

The changing dynamics of current workplaces and the increasing employment of professionals in large bureaucratic organizations calls for a renewed examination of commitment at work. This study assesses a three-component model of professional commitment in a unionized environment to determine the applicability of a three-component model of professional commitment and its effect on participation in union and professional activities. This paper aims to discuss these issues.

Design/methodology/approach

A cross-sectional survey of licensed practical nurses tests the validity of a three-component model of professional commitment concurrent with union commitment; the impact of commitment on varying levels of participation in union and professional activities is examined.

Findings

Support is found for a three component of professional commitment based on Meyer and Allen's model of organizational commitment. Normative professional commitment has an inverse relationship to outcomes compared to professional affective commitment and union affective commitment, eflecting the professional socialization process.

Research limitations/implications

Sample size limits the generalizability of the findings. A larger study, with longitudinal design, would contribute to understanding the operation of union and professional commitment in the same workplace.

Practical implications

Support for a variety of union and professional activities is linked to both union and professional commitment, indicating there may be shared values motivating participation in these activities. It may be possible to overcome the negative association between normative commitment and engagement in activities through emphasis on affective commitment to both the union and the profession.

Originality/value

The findings are important for the increasing number of professionals employed in unionized settings, particularly in the public sector, whose collective bargaining rights are being threatened.

Details

International Journal of Organizational Analysis, vol. 21 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1934-8835

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Article
Publication date: 7 September 2015

Edward Osei Akoto and Claire Allison Stammerjohan

The purpose of this paper is to draw upon exchange theory to test the moderating effect of perceived inflation on dual commitment among a sample of health professionals in…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to draw upon exchange theory to test the moderating effect of perceived inflation on dual commitment among a sample of health professionals in Ghana. The authors test this effect on the unilateral contributions of commitment to the organization and commitment to the professional association.

Design/methodology/approach

Survey questionnaires were used to elicit responses from 141 health professionals in Ghana. Least square moderated regression analysis was employed to test the hypothesized relationships.

Findings

The authors found that respondents do exhibit dual commitment to the organization and the professional association. The findings also supported the hypothesized moderating effect of perceived inflation on the contribution of the unilateral commitments to dual loyalty. Perceived inflation alters the contributions from the predictors, hence, reducing dual commitment.

Research limitations/implications

The study sampled only public sector employees, but the authors do not consider this a fatal flaw since the public sector in Ghana employs a large percentage (51 percent) of the workforce. Future research should focus on the private sector to increase the generalizability of the perceived inflation construct.

Practical implications

Perceived inflation can have adverse effects on workplace attitudes, including dual loyalty to the organization and to the union. But the finding also suggests that, in periods of inflationary pressures, high affective commitment can benefit the organization. The perceived reduction in the value of the economic exchange clearly has implications for compensation policy for the public sector in Ghana.

Originality/value

Researchers have examined the perception of inflation on consumer behavior, but none has investigated the inflationary influence on workplace attitudes. This study extends the conceptualization of the index of perceived inflation and the psychology of inflation to the management literature. This study is the first to investigate the effect of perceived inflation on commitment.

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African Journal of Economic and Management Studies, vol. 6 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-0705

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Article
Publication date: 26 October 2012

Gregor Gall and Jack Fiorito

The aim of this paper is to give a critique of the extant literature on union commitment and participation in order to develop remedies to identified weaknesses

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this paper is to give a critique of the extant literature on union commitment and participation in order to develop remedies to identified weaknesses

Design/methodology/approach

The paper uses a critical assessment of extant literature.

Findings

A number of critical deficiencies exist in the literature to which remedies are proposed.

Research limitations/implications

The remedies need testing through empirical research.

Practical implications

Future research needs to have different research foci and questions.

Social implications

With a reorientation of future research on union commitment, participation and leadership, unions may be better able to benefit from academic research in the area.

Originality/value

The paper suggests that a reorientation of future research on union commitment, participation and leadership will allow more incisive and more robust contributions to be made to understanding unions as complex social organisms.

Details

Leadership & Organization Development Journal, vol. 33 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7739

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Article
Publication date: 28 October 2010

Jenell L.S. Wittmer, James E. Martin and Amanuel G. Tekleab

This study extends previous literature on social exchange by investigating the mediating effects of leader‐member exchange on the relationship between procedural justice…

Abstract

This study extends previous literature on social exchange by investigating the mediating effects of leader‐member exchange on the relationship between procedural justice, job attitudes and turnover in a unionized setting. Past research has shown that procedural justice and subordinate/supervisor exchanges are related to job attitudes and turnover. These relationships have normally been studied in non‐union settings, in which union contextual variables are not considered. The current study uses hierarchical linear modeling to test theoretical models of these relationships in a unionized setting, where procedures and managerial treatment are more clearly defined and regulated. Results reveal that both procedural justice and leader‐member exchange are related to organizational commitment and job satisfaction and leader‐member exchange is related to actual turnover. Leadermember exchange partially mediates the relationship between procedural justice and these job attitudes after accounting for the effects of union commitment (at the individual level) and union‐management relations (at the store level). From a managerial perspective, our results emphasize the importance of proper selection, training and performance appraisal of supervisors, with treatment and support of employees as a main focus.

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American Journal of Business, vol. 25 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1935-5181

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Article
Publication date: 1 August 2019

Min Li, Wenyuan Huang, Chunyang Zhang and Zhengxi Yang

The purpose of this paper is to draw on triadic reciprocal determinism and social exchange theory to examine how “induced-type” and “compulsory-type” union participation…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to draw on triadic reciprocal determinism and social exchange theory to examine how “induced-type” and “compulsory-type” union participation influence union commitment and job involvement, and how union participation in the west differs from that in China. It also examines whether the role of both organizational justice and employee participation climate (EPC) functions in the Chinese context.

Design/methodology/approach

Cross-sectional data are collected from 694 employees in 46 non-publicly owned enterprises, both Chinese and foreign, in the Pearl River Delta region of China. A multi-level moderated mediation test is used to examine the model of this research.

Findings

Union participation is positively related to organizational justice, union commitment and job involvement. In addition, organizational justice acts as the mediator among union participation, union commitment and job involvement. Specifically, the mediating role of organizational justice between union participation and union commitment, and between union participation and job involvement, is stronger in high-EPC contexts than low-EPC contexts.

Originality/value

Instead of examining the impacts of attitudes on union participation, as per most studies in the western context, this research examines the impacts of union participation in the Chinese context on attitudes, including union commitment and job involvement. It also reveals the role of both organizational justice and EPC in the process through which union participation influences union commitment and job involvement.

Details

Employee Relations: The International Journal, vol. 41 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0142-5455

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Article
Publication date: 21 September 2020

Wenyuan Huang, Chuqin Yuan, Jie Shen and Min Li

This study aims to reveal the mechanism through which union commitment influences job performance in China, focusing on the mediating role of employee participation and…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to reveal the mechanism through which union commitment influences job performance in China, focusing on the mediating role of employee participation and the moderating role of affective commitment.

Design/methodology/approach

In this study, a cross-sectional design was employed to collect data from 596 union members in 33 unionized enterprises in China's Pearl River Delta region.

Findings

The results demonstrate that union commitment is positively related to both employee participation and job performance. Moreover, employee participation mediates the positive relationship between union commitment and job performance. In addition, affective commitment strengthens the relationship between union commitment and employee participation and the mediating effect of employee participation.

Practical implications

This study indirectly identifies the impact of a union on organizational performance from an individual-level perspective. It also provides new evidence for union construction in order to obtain support from corporate executives in China.

Originality/value

This study makes an important contribution to the literature by proposing and examining the mediating role of employee participation and the moderating role of affective commitment in the underlying mechanism between union commitment and job performance.

Details

Personnel Review, vol. 50 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0048-3486

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Article
Publication date: 14 May 2018

Ed Snape and Andy W. Chan

This paper aims to evaluate the suggestion that the antecedents of union commitment and participation may differ between foreign-invested enterprises (FIEs) and…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to evaluate the suggestion that the antecedents of union commitment and participation may differ between foreign-invested enterprises (FIEs) and state-owned enterprises (SOEs) in China based on the view that SOE unions will focus more strongly on the traditional dual role, emphasising on managerial functions and employee welfare.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper is based on employee surveys in two enterprises in Shanghai, one FIE and one SOE. Employee attitudes towards the union and enterprise were measured using a self-completion questionnaire, and data were analysed using structural equation modelling.

Findings

Findings suggest that pro-union attitudes were more salient in the FIE context. In contrast, SOE workers’ allegiance to the union appeared to be a less reflection of pro-union attitudes and was more narrowly instrumental.

Practical implications

The findings suggest that FIEs workers’ union allegiances are more likely to reflect a pro-union orientation, with SOE workers more likely to see their union allegiances in narrowly instrumental terms. In FIEs, with a profit-oriented and privately managed enterprise, union allegiances may be closer to those of Western market economies, whilst in SOEs, the “dual role” model persists, with unions a service provider rather than an independent employee representative.

Originality/value

The findings in this paper provide an initial test of the potential differences in the antecedents of union commitment and participation across FIEs and SOEs. Future research is needed to build on these findings, in particular, adopting multi-enterprise study designs across different enterprise types.

Details

Journal of Chinese Human Resource Management, vol. 9 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-8005

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Article
Publication date: 26 October 2012

Geoff Plimmer and Stephen Blumenfeld

This paper aims to identify what workplace representative behaviours are most strongly associated with members’ commitment. This is increasingly important, as…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to identify what workplace representative behaviours are most strongly associated with members’ commitment. This is increasingly important, as decentralised management practices have shifted management decisions to workplace levels, placing new demands on workplace representatives.

Design/methodology/approach

The methodological approach is quantitative and cross sectional. A total of two unions and 32 workplaces are examined.

Findings

Members’ commitment corresponds to workplace delegate leadership that is responsive. Transparency had a negative relationship to commitment, possibly because it is also interpreted as bureaucratic and overly formal for workplace issues. Innovation was not significantly associated with members’ commitment. This applies regardless of occupational class, gender or age. It was also found that workplaces that had adopted the organising model had more committed members.

Research limitations/implications

Cross sectional relationships do not equal causation. However, the findings suggest that workplace level responsiveness by delegates is potentially very effective in building member commitment.

Practical implications

Unions can, with more confidence than previously, invest in developing responsive delegate leadership teams.

Originality/value

This paper provides insight into effective leadership behaviours that apply across two unions covering diverse workplaces and occupational types. As management decentralises, unions need to as well. This provides assistance to unions on how to do so. The cross sectional nature of the study builds on earlier research that may have been prone to common method variance.

Details

Leadership & Organization Development Journal, vol. 33 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7739

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Article
Publication date: 12 July 2018

Enhua Hu, Maolong Zhang, Hongmei Shan, Long Zhang and Yaqing Yue

The purpose of this paper is to offer empirical evidence on whether and how the work experiences of employees in China influence their union-related attitudes and behaviours.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to offer empirical evidence on whether and how the work experiences of employees in China influence their union-related attitudes and behaviours.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors developed a mediated moderation model to examine how job satisfaction and labour relations climate interactively affect union participation and whether union commitment mediates the interactive effects. A total of 585 employees from enterprises in Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Anhui, Jiangxi and Fujian province of China were surveyed to verify the model.

Findings

Job satisfaction was negatively related to union participation and union commitment. Labour relations climate moderated the relationship between job satisfaction and union participation; the relationship was negative and stronger when employees perceived an adverse, rather than a favourable, labour relations climate. Further, the interactive effect of job satisfaction and labour relations climate on union participation was partly mediated by union commitment.

Originality/value

By empirically examining employees’ attitudes and behaviours towards unions in the Chinese context, this study confirms that unions could provide employees with alternative work resources to cope with job dissatisfaction, even in a country where unions play a “transmission belt” role between employees and employers. This study adds value to the existing base of knowledge on union practice and labour relations construction, both inside and outside of China.

Details

Employee Relations, vol. 40 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0142-5455

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