Employee voice behavior: A meta-analytic test of the conservation of resources framework


Thomas W. H. Ng, The University of Hong Kong, School of Business and Economics, Pok Fu Lam, Hong Kong. E-mail: tng@business.hku.hk


Although voice (i.e. expressing change-oriented ideas and suggestions) has frequently been investigated as a way for workers to reciprocate to their employers for the positive treatment they receive, much less is known about how workers use voice to deal with stress. This study takes a conservation of resources perspective to examine the relationships among workplace stress, voice behavior, and job performance. We first examined the strength of relationships of three major groups of workplace stressors and strains (job based, social based, and organization based) with voice behavior. We then examined the relationships of voice behavior with performance variables (e.g. in-role performance and creativity) to investigate how voice may help workers preserve or accumulate resources to enhance their performance. The meta-analytic findings presented here provide support for a negative relationship between workplace stress and voice and a positive relationship between voice behavior and performance outcomes. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.