Is Involvement a Suppressor of the Job Satisfaction–Life Satisfaction Relationship?1

Authors


  • 1

    This research was supported partially by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (German Research Foundation MO 722/6–1). The authors thank Mike Smith, Gerhard Blickle, and two anonymous reviewers for their comments on previous versions of the manuscript.

Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Klaus Moser, Organizational and Social Psychology, University of Erlangen–Nürnberg, Lange Gasse 20, D–90403 Nürnberg, Germany. E–mail: moser@wiso.uni–erlangen.de

Abstract

Previous research has demonstrated a considerable correlation between job satisfaction and life satisfaction. In addition, various researchers have hypothesized that job importance (work involvement) should be a moderator of this relationship. However, most empirical tests did not confirm this assumption. We argue that job importance cannot turn out to be a moderator because the subjective importance of work is already part of job–satisfaction judgments, a notion that has been advanced by Locke (1969) as implicit importance weighting. However, a suppressor effect can be predicted because job importance should be correlated with job satisfaction, but not life satisfaction. In a study of recently hired incumbents (N= 811) in a large German electronics company, we distinguished between job involvement and work involvement. We considered the latter, but not the former, being a measure of job importance. Work involvement, but not job involvement, turned out to be a suppressor of the relation between job satisfaction and life satisfaction.

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