A psychological contract perspective on organizational citizenship behavior

Authors

  • Jacqueline A-M. Coyle-Shapiro

    Corresponding author
    1. Industrial Relations, London School of Economics and Political Science, Houghton Street, London WC2A 2AE, U.K.
    • Industrial Relations, London School of Economics and Political Science, Houghton Street, London WC2A 2AE, U.K.
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  • An earlier version of this paper was presented at the annual meeting of the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology, San Diego, April 2001.

Abstract

This study examined the contribution of the psychological contract framework to understanding organizational citizenship behavior (OCB) using survey data gathered at three measurement points over a three-year period from 480 public sector employees. Separating perceived contract breach into its two components (perceived employer obligations and inducements), the data suggest that perceived employer obligations explained unique variance in three dimensions of citizenship behavior (helping, advocacy and functional participation) beyond that accounted for by perceived employer inducements. Employees' acceptance of the norm of reciprocity moderated the relationship between employer inducements and the dimensions of advocacy and functional participation. Employees' trust in their employer moderated the relationship between perceived employer obligations and the dimensions of advocacy and functional participation. Contrary to the hypothesis, procedural or interactional justice did not moderate the relationship between employer inducements and OCB. The implications of the findings for psychological contract research are discussed. Copyright © 2002 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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