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The job characteristics of public sector professionals and its effects on their work motivation, job satisfaction and work involvement

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Title:
The job characteristics of public sector professionals and its effects on their work motivation, job satisfaction and work involvement
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Taher, Walied A
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Denver, CO
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University of Colorado Denver
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English
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xii, 161 leaves : illustrations, forms ; 29 cm

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Subjects / Keywords:
Professional employees in government ( lcsh )
Job satisfaction ( lcsh )
Employee motivation ( lcsh )
Employee motivation ( fast )
Job satisfaction ( fast )
Professional employees in government ( fast )
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bibliography ( marcgt )
theses ( marcgt )
non-fiction ( marcgt )

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Includes bibliographical references.
General Note:
Submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree, Doctor of Philosophy in Public Administration, Graduate School of Public Affairs
General Note:
School of Public Affairs
Statement of Responsibility:
by Walied A. Taher.

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ocm25503037
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Full Text
THE JOB CHARACTERISTICS OF PUBLIC SECTOR PROFESSIONALS
AND ITS EFFECTS ON THEIR WORK MOTIVATION,
JOB SATISFACTION AND WORK INVOLVEMENT
by
Walied A. Taher
B.S., King Saud University, 1981
M.P.A., State University of New York at Albany, 1985
A thesis submitted to the
Faculty of the Graduate School of Public Affairs of the
University of Colorado at Denver in partial fulfillment
of Doctor of Philosophy in Public Administration
Graduate School of Public Affairs


This thesis for the Doctor of Philosophy in
Public Administration
degree by
Walied A. Taher
has been approved for the
Graduate School
of Public Affairs
by
Mark A- Emmert
Anne Moeller
Date 5-3/- /fpf


Copyright by Walied A. Taher 1989
All Rights Reserved


Taher, Walied A. (Ph.D., Public Administration)
The Job Characteristics of Public Sector Professionals
and its Effects on their Work Motivation, Job Satis-
faction and Work Involvement
Thesis directed by Associate Professor Mark A. Emmert
Public policy is greatly influenced by a unique,
expensive and politically powerful occupational group,
"the public sector professionals" (PSP). Since society's
welfare depends on this public policy, the best and
maximum job performance is sought from those who affect
it.
This Ph.D. dissertation tested and expanded the
emerging knowledge about the relationship of four work
variables that affect the public sector professionals'
job performance. These are job characteristics, work
motivation, job satisfaction and work involvement.
Data were collected by a survey from a random
sample of 460 professional and blue collar employees in a
state government in the U.S. The accepted response rate
was 39%. The data were analyzed by a t-test and two
multiple regression methods. The findings were:
(1) The PSP job characteristics, work motivation
and job satisfaction were normal and as expected for
their job family according to the Job Diagnostic Survey
Normative Data. However, when compared to the blue
collar workers, PSP's job satisfaction and work involve-
ment were lower than that of blue collar workers.


V
(2) Job characteristics were not statistically
significant in explaining variations in any of the PSP
dependent variables. Rather they were explained by
social satisfaction, job fulfillment of employees'
intrinsic needs (especially growth needs) and information
from others on job performance.
(3) Work motivation had a statistically sig-
nificant effect on another dependent variable, work
involvement.
Thess findings contradicted some of the organ-
izational behavior literature, especially the job
characteristics model.
The recommendations included a tentative model
which can be used as a starting point to construct public
organizational behavior theory that is suitable to the
public sector. It is hoped that future research will
test and expand this model until such a theory is
reached.
The form and content of this abstract are approved. I recommend
dissertation


DEDICATION
To my parents
who taught me the value of knowledge and encouraged me to
work hard to obtain it.


ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
I would like to express my deepest gratitude to
my professor and advisor, Dr. Mark Emmert, for his
guidance, positive attitude, insight and patience. I
would also like to extend my appreciation to another
professor, Dr. Sam Overman, whose early guidance gave me
a head start on my dissertation work. I would like to
thank the members of my dissertation committee, Profes-
sors Anne Moeller, Robert McGowan and Eileen Tynan. I
would especially like to thank my parents, my brothers
Khalid and Mohammed, my wife and my son Abdullah for
their unlimited encouragement, support and patience which
made it possible for me to complete my doctoral program.
Finally, sincere thanks and appreciation are due
to Dr. Jeffrey S. Kane (University of Massachusetts at
Amherst) for his valuable input, cooperation and kind
permission to replicate his pioneering research and to
utilize the Quality of Life Survey that he has developed,
thus allowing the research on this particular topic.


CONTENTS
CHAPTER I
INTRODUCTION ....................................... 1
Background........................................ 1
Importance of the Topic............................ 4
Variables of Interest and the Rationale
for Their Choice................................ 6
Contributions of the Dissertation..................18
Organization of the Dissertation ................. 21
Summary............................................21
CHAPTER II
LITERATURE REVIEW....................................23
Introduction ..................................... 23
Rational for Reviewing these theories..............23
Work Motivation Theories ......................... 25
Needs Based Theories.............................25
Intrinsic vs. Extrinsic Motives..................32
Work Involvement...................................34
Discrepancy Theory of Job Satisfaction ........... 36
Job Characteristics Model..........................37
Public Professionals Quality of Work Life. ... 44
The Nature of the Research Problem.................52
The Research Questions ........................... 54
The Hypothesis.....................................56


IX
The Null Hypothesis...............................56
The Alternative Hypothesis ...................... 57
Summary.............................................59
CHAPTER III
RESEARCH METHODOLOGY ................................ 60
Introduction....................................... 60
The Design..........................................60
Operationalization ................................ 61
The Occupational Groups..........................61
The Work Variables................................62
The Sample..........................................66
Data Collection.....................................67
The Instrument....................................67
The Procedure.....................................68
Response Rate.....................................70
Summary.............................................7^
CHAPTER IV
RESEARCH FINDINGS.....................................75
Descriptive Statistics on the Variables.............75
Hypothesis Testing ................................ 78
Concerning the differences
between the two groups.........................78
Concerning the relationship between
the variables..................................83
Explanation and Implications of
the Findings..................................103
Summary............................................112


X
CHAPTER V
CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS.....................114
Recommendations...................................114
Theoretically. ................................ 114
For Practitioneers . ............... 122
Future Research...................................123
Conclusion...................................... 124
BIBLIOGRAPHY ........................................ 127
APPENDIX
A. Sample and Population Characteristics .......... 134
B. The Data Collection Instrument...................142
C. The Cover Letter.................................153
D. The Scoring Guide for the Short Form of JDS .
155


TABLES
Table
2.1 Mean Scores on Job Characteristics
for Two Groups of Workers.......................50
2.2 List of Variables...............................55
3.1 Items of the Instrument used to Measure
Extrinsic Job Factors...........................64
3.2 Items of The Instrument used to Measure
Needs Fulfillment Variables.....................65
3.3 Survey Respondents Analyzed by Gender...........73
3.4 Survey Respondents Analyzed by Race.............73
3.5 Survey Respondents Analyzed by Education ... 73
3.6 Survey Respondents Analyzed by Age..............74
4.1 Descriptive Statistics of the Variables. ... 77
4.2 T-test for Comparison Between the
Two Groups......................................80
4.3 Pearson Correlation Coefficents.................88
4.4 Key Statistics of Test Method with
Professionals' Work Motivation as Dependent
Variable........................................91
4.5 Key Statistics of Test Method with
Professionals' Job Satisfaction as
Dependent Variable ............................ 92
4.6 Key Statistics of Test Method with
Professionals* Work Involvement as
Dependent Variable ............................ 92
4.7 Key Statistics: Stepwise Method of
Multiple Regression for Professionals-
Dependent Variable: Work Motivation.............95
4.8 Key Statistics: Stepwise Method of Multiple
Regression for Professionals- Dependent
Variable: Job Satisfaction .................... 96


4.9 Key Statistics: Stepwise Method of Multiple
Regression for Professionals- Dependent
Variable: Work Involvement .......................... 97
4.10 Key Statistics: Stepwise Method of Multiple
Regression for Blue Collar Workers............100


FIGURES
Figure
1.1. A Framework for Understanding the
Importance of Job Characteristics, Work
Motivation, Job Satisfaction and Work
Involvement....................................7
1.2. The Potential Influence of Motivation
on Performance ............................... 9
1.3. The Central Role of Motivation in the
Management Process .......................... 11
2.1. Kane's Conceptualization of
Work Involvement..............................35
2.2. The Job Characteristics Model.................38
2.3* The Perceived Relationship among the
Dissertation Variables ...................... 53
5.1. A Tentative Model for Understanding Public
Sector Professionals Work Behavior..........119


CHAPTER I
INTRODUCTION
Background
Governments play an important role in providing
welfare and prosperity to their nations. They take care
of their citizens before the time of their birth until
after their death, satisfying their needs and providing
them with an endless, varied list of services. These
services range from national defense, internal security
and solving disputes to protecting the environment and
encouraging the fine arts.
As a matter of fact, public policy- 'whatever
governments chose to do or not do (Dye, 1976)- is simply
unavoidable. This is because of two reasons: empowerment
and monopoly on needed services. The first reason is
empowerment. This is the business of government agencies
to administer the law. Their function is authoritative
in the deepest and most formal sense. Noncompliance with
public rules and regulations may result in coercion or
force (Gortener, Mahler & Nicholson, 1987). The second
reason is a monopoly on needed services, such as fire and
police protection, national defense, air pollution
control and so on, such services are provided by govern-


2
ment agencies and can be characterized as being collec-
tive goods. Collective goods, in contrast to the other
three kinds of goods (private, toll, and common pool)
i
will not be supplied by the market place. The reason for
this is that by their very nature, collective goods are
used simultaneously by many people and no one can be
excluded from enjoying them. An individual has an
economic incentive to make full use of such goods without
paying for them and without contributing a fair share of
the effort required to supply them. That is, the users
have a tendency to become free riders. If no one
volunteers to pay for such goods, surely no one would
volunteer to produce them (at least not an adequate
supply). Therefore, government action is needed to
assume the role of supplying these needed services
(Savas, 1982).
These services are identified, planned, adminis-
tered and evaluated by public employees, thus making
government work a "labor intensive" process. From this
we observe the critical role played by public personnel
in achieving national goals.
Being aware of the fact that up to 80? of most
governmental agencies budgets go toward personnel
(Garson & Overman, 1983), public managers have searched
for the ways that lead to the most productive and
effective employee performance. The field of organiza-


3
tional behavior turned out to be a very useful one. It
presents different methods
for getting the best and the maximum out of this most
valuable means of production, "the human factor." In
their search for these organizational behavior techni-
ques, some public managers (both practitioners and
scholars)- like their applied field public management and
its parent field public administration- had to seek and
borrow heavily from other disciplines. For example, they
drew organizational behavior theories from business
administration., psychology and organizational psychology.
Then they tried to adjust it to fit their unique public
organization environments.
Despite these great efforts, public organization-
al behavior is not complete yet. Many variables and
their relations with each other still need to be inves-
tigated. A large number of theories and propositions of
employee behavior in work organizations need to be tested
and validated as well. Thus calling for, and hopefully
benefitting from, projects like this dissertation. An
area in need of examination is the relationship between
job characteristics, work motivation, job satisfaction
and work involvement.


4
Importance of the Topic
A pioneering study on public sector professionals
(PSP) by Cherniss and Kane (1987) drew attention to a gap
in public organizational behavior that needs to be ad-
dressed. Not only is public employment highly labor
intensive, it also uses a larger portion of professionals
than the private sector. In fact, government is the
largest single employer of professionals (Cherniss and
Kane, 1987). Besides their large numbers and their
monopoly of highly needed skills and information, public
sector professionals have a great influence and at times
total control of public policy. This, in turn, affects
society's welfare (Benvesite, 1977). Furthermore, there
are good reasons to believe that job characteristics,
work behavior and attitudes of professionals are dif-
ferent and better than that of blue collar workers
(Middlemist & Hitt, 1981). Therefore, it is a must to
study public sector professionals, particularly what
affects their work motivation and productivity. This
influential occupational group has not received the
interest it deserves.
Cherniss and Kane (1987) found that the job
characteristics of PSPs were lower than the blue collar
characteristics in: skill variety, task identity, task
significance, autonomy and knowledge of results. Also,
PSPs work motivation and job satisfaction were not higher


5
than those of blue collars. In fact, their jobs provided
them with less intrinsic fulfillment than did the jobs of
blue collar workers. Finally, they speculated that PSP
maintain minimal levels of job satisfaction despite their
less fulfilling jobs by reducing their aspirations for
intrinsic fulfillment through work.
These findings of Cherniss and Kane were so
surprising that new research has to be generated to
answer the following questions;
(1) Can the findings of Cherniss and Kane be
replicated and generalized to other governmental settings
in the United States?
(2) What are the factors that affect job satis-
faction, work motivation and work involvement of public
sector professionals?
(3) Are they different from those that affect
blue collar workers?
(4) Is there any relation between the dependent
variables of work motivation, job satisfaction and work
involvement?
This dissertation was thus started to (a) test
and (b) expand the pioneering work of Cherniss and Kane.
A preliminary literature review by this writer
has supported Cherniss and Kanes interest for studying
public sector professionals as a unique occupational
group. It revealed how powerful they are in influencing


6
public policy (which affects societys welfare). The
preliminary literature review also validated Cherniss and
Kanes choices of job characteristics, work motivation,
job satisfaction and work involvement as the key work
variables to be studied in order to gain a better
understanding of public sector professionals job
performance.
Variables of Interest and the
Rational for their Choice
The dissertation at hand investigates the interaction
among four work variables (job characteristics, work
motivation, job satisfaction and work involvement) as
they relate to professional employees in the public
sector. The reasons for choosing these work variables
and this occupational group are discussed in this
section.
The Work Variables. To aid in understanding the
importance of the following work variables, Figure 1.1
was adapted from Steers (1981). As seen in the figure,
job characteristics, work motivation, job satisfaction
and work involvement variables affect behaviors, at-
titudes and organizational effectivenss of people at
work.
Job Characteristics. Job characteristics is
defined as the job scope (Luthans, 1985). The writer


r
GROUP BEHAVIOR
Group Structure
Communication
Conflict
Decision Making
Leadership
*
INDIVIDUAL BEHAVIOR !
! ' ...........
i |
| Needs* (Intrinsic and extrinsic) {
j Abilities
Traits j
i Perception
| Learning
; Motivation*
OUTCOMES
Behaviors
Attitudes
Organizational
effectiveness
jWORK SITUATION
| Job Satisfaction*
1 Work invoivement and Alienation*
j Stress
1 Job Characteristics (Intrinsic and extrinsic)
i Appraisal and Rewards
i______________________________________
*These variables are investigated in this dissertation.
Source: Adapted from Steers, Introduction to Organizational Behavior
FIG. 1.1 A FRAMEWORK FOR UNDERSTANDING THE IMPORTANCE OF JOB
CHARACTERISTICS, WORK MOTIVATION, JOB SATISFACTION AND WORK
INVOLVEMENT


8
percieves it as the blueprint of the components required
to design a job. It is believed that there is a direct
link between job characteristics and job outcomes. These
outcomes are defined as the quantity and quality of job
performance and attitudes and behaviors of the worker.
Two theoretical frameworks have generated an impressive
quantity of research that supports this notion. These
two approaches are the job characteristics model- which
is the dominant one- and the social information pro-
cessing model. Examples of this research are: Hackman
and Lawler, 1971; Hackman and Oldham, 1975, 1976, 1980;
Roberts and Glick, 1981; Slamaick and Pfeffer, 1977,
1978; Blau and Katerberg, 1982; Griffin, 1982; Thomas
and Griffin, 1983; and Glick, Jenkins and Gupta, 1986.
All of these studies, in one form or another, have
concluded that work itself is a powerful influence on
work motivation, job satisfaction and performance (Glick,
Jenkins & Gupta, 1986).
Work motivation. Motivation can be defined as
that which energizes, directs and sustains an individual
to perform goal-directed actions (Randolph, 1985). More
than one hundred years ago, William James of Harvard, in
his research on motivation, found that if motivation is
low, employee performance will suffer as much as if
ability were low. He found that hourly employees could
maintain their jobs (that is, not be fired) by working at


9
approximately 20 to 30 percent of their ability. His
study also showed that employees work close to 80 to 90
percent of their ability if highly motivated. Both
levels of performance are illustrated in Figure 1.2
(James, 1890).
Figure 1.2. The Potential Influence of Motivation
on Performance
Katz and Kahn (1978) asserted that human effort
and motivation are the most important maintenance sources
for almost all social structures. They noted that
organizations have behavioral requirements for the people
who work in them. First, people must be attracted to
join the organization and remain with it. Second, people
must dependably perform the tasks they were
hired for. Third, people must transcend dependable role
performance and engage in some form of creative, spon-
taneous and innovative behavior at work. These three
behavioral requirements deal directly with the issue of
Employee
80 to 90?
% of
ability
area
affected
> by
motivation
20 to 30$


10
motivation. Motivational techniques must be employed not
only to encourage employees to join and remain with an
organization, but also to perform in a dependable fashion
and to think and take advantage of unique opportunities
(Katz & Kuhn, 1978). This is especially true for
professionals who have a large degree of autonomy to act
as they see fit.
In addition, from the individuals standpoint,
motivation is a key to a productive and useful life.
Work consumes a sizable portion of our waking hours. If
this time is to be meaningful and contribute toward the
development of a healthy personality, the individual must
be willing to devote effort toward task accomplishment.
Motivation plays a central role in this (Steers, 1981).
Also, Evans (1986) in a comprehensive review of
the organizational behavior literature drew attention to
the central role of motivation in organizational be-
havior. He suggested that factors such as leadership and
job design affect behavior through their effects on
motivation.
Because of the importance of motivation in
determining the level of employee performance- which, in
turn, influences how effectively the organizational goals
will be met- motivating is sometimes considered as part
of the key managerial function of directing. Some
authors, such as.Harold Koontz and Cyril ODonnel (1968),


11
view motivating as a separate function which is central
to the management process as shown in Figure 1.3.
Organizing
Figure 1.3. The Central Role of Motivation in
the Management Process
Job satisfaction. The concept of job satisfac-
tion may be defined as "a pleasurable or positive
emotional state resulting from the appraisal of ones job
or job experience (Locke, 1976). The interest in job
satisfaction stems from the variety of positive conse-
quences it brings to both the employees and their
organizations. Vroom (1964) and Porter and Steers (1977)
found that satisfied workers are less likely, compared to
dissatisfied workers, to terminate employment; thus, job
satisfaction can assist in minimizing employee turnover.
Also, Vroom (1964), Porter and Steers (1977), Muschisky
(1977) and Steers and Rhodes (1978) found that job
satisfaction can, lower, moderately, employee absen-
teeism. Through its effect on turnover and absenteeism,
job satisfaction indirectly impacts organizational
effectiveness. Lawler (1973) estimated that the cost of
one turnover among lower level jobs can easily exceed


12
$2,000 while the cost of one turnover among the manage-
ment rank ranges from $10,000 to $20,000. It was also
found that highly satisfied employees learn new job-
related tasks more quickly (Wyatt et al., 1937), have
fewer on the job accidents (Vroom, 1964), file fewer
grievances (Fleishman and Harris, 1962), exhibit better
mental and physical health (Burke, 1969; Chadwick-Jones,
1969; Kothauser, 1965) and live longer (Palmoe, 1969;
Steers, 1981).
Work Involvement. Jeffrey S. Kane (1977) defined
work involvement as the "extent to which one looks to
work to provide the total amount of intrinsic fulfillment
desired from life in general". In order to understand
the importance of work involvement to the organization
and individual, it is helpful to review the functions of
work. Work fulfills several useful purposes, for
individuals and their organizations. Without work,
organizations cannot provide services or products.
From the employees standpoint: work serves
economic,, social, status and self-esteem functions. (1)
Economic function: In exchange for labor, employees
receive the necessary income with which they support
themselves and their family. (2) Social function: The
work place provides many opportunities for meeting new
people and developing friendships. Many people spend
more time with their coworkers at work than they spend


13
with their own family at home. (3) Status function: Work
is a source of social status in the community. The
status associated with jobs often transcends the boun-
daries of the organization. A university president may
have a great deal of status in the community-at-large
because of his or her position in the university. (4)
Self-esteem function: Finally, work can also be an
important source of identity, self-esteem and self-
actualization. It provides a sense of purpose for
individuals and clarifies their value or contribution to
society. As Freud (1930, p. 34) noted long ago, "work
has a greater effect than any other technique of living
in binding the individual more closely to reality; in his
work, he is at least securely attached to a part of
reality, the human community." Work contributes to self-
esteem in at least two ways. First, it provides employ-
ees with an opportunity to demonstrate competence or
mastery over both themselves and their environment. They
discover that they can actually do something. Second,
work reassures individuals that they are carrying out
activities that produce something of value to others. It
reassures them that they have something significant to
offer. Without this, the individual feels he or she has
little to contribute and is, therefore, of little value
to society.


m
However, in order for work to fulfill this last
function, it should be sufficiently challenging and allow
some control for its occupants. Without this, employees
often experience sensations of powerlessness, meaningless
and normlessness. This condition is called "work
alienation" which is the opposite of "work involvement".
When work is not sufficiently challenging and
employees are not involved in their jobs (in other words,
alienated from their jobs) organizations run the risk of
jeopardizing productivity and organizational effective-
ness. This happens because employees simply see no
reason to contribute to maximizing their efforts on the
job (Steers, 1981).
Argule (1972), in a study investigating the
serious problems associated with work, started his list
of problems with: "Alienation and low job satisfaction:
many employees today are unable to identify with the work
they do or with their employer. They work on jobs that
have little meaning and under conditions over which they
have little control. As such, it is not surprising to
find workers who are alienated and dissatisfied."
Also, Yanklovich (1979), in an attempt to explain
the reasons behind the decline of U. S. productivity and
output compared to other industrialized nations, noted
that, "...a major factor contributing to the decline...
[is that] people who work at all levels of enterprise...


15
are no longer motivated to work as hard and as effective-
ly as in the past.
As proof, he cited the following statistics. In
the 1960s, approximately 50$ of employed Americans
considered their work as a source of personal fulfill-
ment; in 1979, the total was less than 25 percent.
Moreover, in 1979 only 13$ of working Americans found
their jobs truly meaningful and more important to them
than their leisure time activities. Finally, in the
1960s, 58$ of American employees believed that "hard work
always pays off"; in 1979, only 43$ held this belief
(Yanklovich, 1979).
From this we clearly see the importance of work
involvement both to employees and their organizations.
In summary, the literature and research demon-
strate the importance of job characteristics, work
motivation, job satisfaction and work involvement for
understanding work behavior of people in general. We
need, however, to explore the relationships of these
variables as they relate particularly to PSP.
The Occupational Group. Professionals working in
the public sector are important to study as a distinct
occupational group because of the following reasons:
(1) Professions have the following character-
istics. They are (a) "occupations requiring a body of
extensive knowledge that is acquired chiefly from books,


16
learned scholars and applied to the service of society"
(Shafritz, 1985). This preparation takes a long time and
costs society a substantial amount of money, both during
education and after graduating in compensating them.
This makes professionals a rare and expensive factor of
production.
(b) A system of control over the professional
practice which regulates (1) the education of its new
members; (2) maintains code of ethics and (3) ap-
propriate sanctions for disciplinary actions (Shafritz,
1985). Thus, giving professionals and their associations
a total legal monopoly over their occupations. Only a
physician, for example, can practice medicine.
(2) Politically the power of public sector
professionals has become a force that must be recognized
in the administrative process. Benvensite (1977) has
noted that in some cases, a profession can exercise a
direct voice in the public policy making with adverse
consequences for popular control and accountability.
Licensing at the state level and regulatory process at
the national level are two areas where professional
influence is strong- some say, too strong. He has drawn
attention to professions such as law, medicine and civil
engineering that have been described by different
observers as enjoying excessive influence in formulating
and implementing public policy.


17
Frederick Mosher (1978) identified five major
arenas for the political power of public professionals.
These are (1) election or appointment to high public
offices (which is dominated by lawyers); (2) effective
controls over an individual agency- if not a near
monopoly- of the important managerial positions in it
(for example, educators in the office of Education,
engineers in the Public Works Departments); (3) a profes-
sional presence in an organization, but without profes-
sional domination (all agencies have legal counsellors,
budgeters, and accountants); (4) an ability to generate
pressure on decision makers from fellow or allied
professionals outside the governmental structure; and (5)
an ability to operate through the system of inter-
governmental relations, by collaborating with fellow
professionals in other units of government.
As a matter of fact, a recent development in
political science known as "The Technocrats Theory"
argues that professionals through their expertise and
their positions of authority in public organizations
actually make most of the important political decisions.
This occurs for two reasons: (1) the increasing com-
plexity and interdependence of society (technologically
and economically, nationally and internationally) create
a need for expertise and attention to both broad and
specific impacts that are beyond the time- and perhaps


18
intellectual- capacity of much of society; and (2) at the
same time, professionals are aware of this monopoly on
knowledge and information and use this very powerful tool
to make their positions secure. Professionals find it
relatively easy to interact, whether in public or private
positions, and to 'arrange public policy to execute
their professional needs (Gortener, Mahler & Nicholson,
1987).
However, despite the importance of the public
sector professionals, not enough is known about them,
particularly their job characteristics and what affects
their work motivation, job satisfaction and work involve-
ment. It is hoped that this dissertation will aid in
providing a better understanding of these variables.
Contributions, of the Dissertation
This dissertation aims at achieving the following
five theoretical and applied contributions.
Theoretically, its goals are:
(a) Testing and expanding the emerging knowledge
about this unique occupational group: public sector
professionals. In particular their job design, work
motivation, job satisfaction and work involvement will be
studied.
And secondarily, (b) providing a better under-
standing of the relationships between the above-mentioned


19
factors. This understanding combined with findings of
other similar research will improve our knowledge about
the interaction among the elements of each of the causes
of organizational behavior, it is hoped (through many
other similar researches on the remaining causes), a
general system theory (GST) for organizational behavior
will be developed.
This incremental approach to organization
behavior was suggested by Schwab and Cummings (1973).
After reviewing theories of performance and satisfaction,
they concluded that it is more useful to work on a theory
of performance and a theory of satisfaction separately
rather than prematurely trying to link the two. Support
for this approach is also found in the pioneering article
by Kast and Rosenzwieg (1972) which introduced the
General System Theory to organizational and managerial
contexts. In it, they suggested that one should know
about interrelationships among elements in order to
complete a subsystem for GST.
(c) Validate existing knowledge about the job
characteristics model, intrinsic work motivation,
discrepancy theory of job satisfaction, and Kanes view
of work involvement in a public organization setting.
Gortener et al. (1987) called for validating organiza-
tional behavior theories before applying them to public
sector organizations. They drew attention to the fact


20
that books on organization theory and management con-
centrate almost exclusively on the private firm. Private
firms form the substance of research, case studies,
discussion and exercises by most researchers and writers.
They add,
Organization theory, to the extent
that it has ignored public organizations
or has failed to understand their special
and different qualities is incomplete.
A shift in emphasis is called for to
overcome the gaps and to foster the
development of organization theory that
addresses its blind side, the public side
(Gortener, Mahler & Nicholson, 1987).
(d) Adding to the growing data base on public
organizational behavior.
(e) In the applied realm, the findings of this
dissertation might help practicing public and private
managers motivate this unique and expensive occupational
group. Romzek (1985) has suggested that since financial
rewards are mainly scarce under government fiscal
constraints, intrinsic and not extrinsic rewards should
be the basis for motivating public employees. Job
designs that facilitate intrinsic fulfillment of em-
ployees' needs might be the answer to public profes-
sionals work motivation, job satisfaction and work
involvement.


21
Organization of the Dissertation
This dissertation is divided into five chapters.
The chapter following this introduction reviews the
literature dealing with the dissertation variables and
introduces the dissertations problem, research questions
and hypotheses. The third chapter addreses the disser-
tation's research design, operationalization, sampling
and data collection.
The fourth chapter reports and explains the
research results and the tests of the hypotheses.
The final chapter suggests some recommendations
on how to benefit from the research findings.
Summary
This chapter started by presenting the case for
the need to search for the best ways to increase the
quantity and quality of job performance of public
personnel in general and public professionals in par-
ticular. It showed that government work is labor
intensive and that public policy is unavoidable. Then
the dissertation variables and their importance were
discussed. This was followed by the theoretical and
applied contributions that this dissertation aims at
providing to the fields of organizational behavior,
public organizational behavior and public management.


22
Finally, the chapter ended with an explanation of the
organization of the rest of this thesis.


Chapter II
LITERATURE REVIEW
Introduction
An enormous wealth of literature exists for each
of the dissertation variables. Hundreds of articles and
books debated their meanings, researched their links to
many organizational factors and settings and presented
contradictory or competing models that explains them.
Very few, however, have focused on public sector profes-
sionals. This chapter reviews only the literature which
the dissertations research problem is conceptually based
upon and derived from. The chapter is divided into ten
sections. In order, they are: (a) the rational for
choosing these particular theories, (b) work motivation,
(c) work involvement, (d) job satisfaction, (e) the job
characteristics model, (f) public professionals quality
of work life, (g) nature of the research problem, (h) the
research questions, and (i) summary.
Rational for Reviewing these Theories
The reasons these particular theories were chosen
is explained in this section. First, they explain the
dissertation's flow of logic (derived from Dunnette and
Kirchner, 1985) which is: people have a variety of needs


2H
or desires (examined in section B, work motivation).
These needs can be fulfilled in two different ways:
intrinsically and extrinsically (examined in section B).
One of the channels which provides both intrinsic and
extrinsic fulfillment for people's needs is work (re-
viewed in section C, work involvement). However, when
people work, they show either satisfaction or dissatis-
faction with their jobs. (Section D reviews Locke's
discrepancy theory which is related to for job satisfac-
tion. )
Knowing this, and the fact that public policy is
greatly influenced by public sector professionals
(Chapter 1, section M), the researcher is interested in
knowing what are the factors that influence public
sector's professionals' work motivation, job satisfaction
and work involvement. The job characteristics model
(reviewed in section E) seems to provide the answer to
that question. Finally, section F reviews the literature
which assesses the quality of work life among public
sector professionals.
Second, conceptually these models are inter-
related. A clear understanding of the job characteris-
tics model, Kane's view of work involvement, and dis-
crepancy theory of job satisfaction requires under-
standing the two categories of theories of motivation,


25
needs-based theories and intrinsic versus extrinsic
theories.
Work Motivation Theories
Robbins (1979) has identified and classified the
most influential work motivation theories into three
broad categories: (1) needs-based theories, (2) intrinsic
versus extrinsic motives, and (3) content theories.
Since the conceptualization of this dissertations
research problem is derived from the theories of the
first two categories; they are summarized below.
Needs-Based Theories
Four theories share this category. They are: (A)
Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs, (B) ERG theory, (C) Murrays
manifest needs and (D) McClellands Trichotomy of Needs.
Although one is tempted to endorse a certain category or
chose a specific theory as the best or the more valid, it
might be more helpful if the theories presented were
looked at as complementary rather than competitive.
Using Waldos analogy of the three blind men and the
elephant, combining these theories might help us know
work motivation better than utilizing each one alone.
Maslows Hierarchy of Needs. Perhaps this theory
is the most widely known theory of individual needs and
motivation. Maslow hypothesized that within every human


26
being there exists a hierarchy of five needs. These
needs are: (1) physiological: includes hunger, thirst,
shelter, sex, and other bodily needs; (2) safety:
includes security and protection from physical and
emotional harm; (3) love: includes affection, belon-
gingness, acceptance and friendship; (4) esteem: includes
internal esteem factors such as self-respect, autonomy,
and achievement; and external esteem factors such as
status, recognition, and attention; (5) self-actual-
ization: the drive to become what one is capable of
becoming: includes growth, achieving ones potential and
self-fulfillment.
As each of these needs becomes substantially
satisfied the next need becomes dominant. The individual
moves up the hierarchy. From the standpoint of motiva-
tion, the theory would say that although no need is ever
fully gratified, a substantially satisfied need no longer
motivates.
Maslow (1943) separated the five needs into
higher and lower levels. Physiological and safety needs
were described as lower-order, and love, esteem, and
self-actualization as higher-order needs. The differen-
tiation between the two orders was made on the premise
that higher-order needs are satisfied internally to the
person, whereas lower-order needs are predominantly
satisfied externally by such things as money, union


27
contracts tenure. In fact the natural conclusion to be
drawn from Maslow's classification is that in times of
economic plenty, almost all permanently employed workers
have had their lower-order needs substantially met.
E.R.G. Theory. Clayton Alderfer has proposed a
modified need hierarchy theory, that essentially collapses
Maslows five hierarchical levels into three. He argues
that there are three groups of core needs--existence,
relatedness, and growth--hence the label: ERG Theory.
The existence group is concerned with providing one's
basic material existence requirements. They include the
items that Maslow considered as physiological and safety
needs. The second group of needs are those of related-
ness--the desire we have for maintaining important
interpersonal relationships. These social and status
desires require interaction with others if they are to be
satisfied, and align with Maslows love need and the
external component of Maslow's esteem classification.
Finally, Alderfer isolates growth needs--an intrinsic
desire for ones personal development. These include the
intrinsic component from Maslow's esteem category and the
characteristics included under self-actualization
(Alderfer, 1969).
In general, Alderfer suggest that individuals
move up the hierarchy from existence needs to relatedness
needs to growth needs, as the lower-level needs become


28
satisfied. In this respect, Alderfer's model is quite
similar to that proposed by Maslow. However, Alderfers
theory differs from Maslows original formulation in two
important respects. First, Maslow argued that progres-
sion from one level in the hierarchy to the next was
based on the satisfaction of the lower-order need; hence,
individuals progress up the hierarchy as a result of
satisfaction. Alderfer's ERG theory, in contrast,
suggests that in addition to this satisfaction progres-
sion process, there is also a frustration-regression
process that is, when an individual is continually
frustrated in attempts to satisfy growth needs, related-
ness needs may reemerge as primary and the individual may
redirect his or her efforts toward these lower-order
needs.
A second major difference is that unlike Maslow's
original formulation, Alderfer's model suggests that more
than one need may be operative, or activated, at the same
time. This assumption suggests a less rigid model of the
motivational process and bears a resemblance in this
regard to Murray's manifest needs model, reviewed next.
Murray's Manifest Needs. This model has its
origin in the early work of Henry Murray and his as-
sociates. Murray argued that individuals could be
classified according to the strengths of various per-
sonality-need variables. These needs were believed to


29
represent a central motivating force, both in terms of
the intensity and the direction of goal-directed be-
havior. Moreover, needs were viewed as largely learned
behavior- rather than innate tendencies- which are
activated by cues from the external environment.
Each need is composed of two factors: (1) a
qualitative or directional component which represents the
object toward which the motive is directed; and (2) a
quantitative or energetic component which represents the
strength or intensity of the motive toward the object.
According to this model, needs may be manifest (ac-
tivated) or latent. A latent need does not imply that
the need is not strong, only that it has been inhibited
and has found no overt form of expression. Thus a person
may have a high need for achievement but such a need may
not be strongly aroused because of impediments in the
environment (such as the lack of a challenging task).
The result would theoretically be poor performance. If
sufficient arousal of the need were attained (by provid-
ing a challenging job), we would expect the resulting
drive to energize achievement-oriented behavior. Murray
was concerned with an entire set of 13 needs. It
included the needs for achievement, affiliation, aggres-
sion, autonomy, endurance, exhibition, harm avoidance,
impulsivity, nurturance, order, power, succorance and
understanding (Murray, 1938).


30
Although the manifest needs theory resembles
Maslow's model in that both theories identify a set of
needs and goals toward which behavior is directed. The
two models differ, however, in two important aspects.
First, Murray does not suggest that needs are arranged in
any hierarchical form as does Maslow. And, second,
Murrays model allows for more flexibility in describing
people. Maslows need hierarchy model places individuals
on one level at a time in the hierarchy (e.g., esteem
needs). Using Murray's manifest needs model, on the
other hand, we can describe an individual as having high
needs for achievement and autonomy and low needs for
affiliation and power- all at the same time. Hence, we
are able to be more specific in describing people,
instead of merely claiming they have "higher-order need
strengths as is the case with Maslow. Also, Murray
dealt with the question that Maslow ignored, How to
observe needs? He stated that needs were not something
that could be observed by the researcher. On the
contrary, the analysis of such needs was a "hypothetical
process, the occurrence of which is imagined in order to
account for certain objective and subjective facts." In
other words, one could only infer needs from observed
behavior.


31
While Murray- as indicated- was interested in a
set of 13 needs, much interest and research in this area
focused on a shorter set suggested by David McClelland.
Achievement, Power, and Affiliation Needs. David
McClelland has proposed that there are three motives or
needs that are important in an organizational setting:
the needs for achievement, power, and affiliation. The
first is an individualized need. In contrast, power and
affiliation are interpersonally oriented, that is, they
require other human beings in order to be satisfied. The
three are defined as follows:
Need for achievementthe drive to excel,
to achieve in relation to a set of
standards, to strive to succeed.
Need for power--the need to make others
behave in a way that they would not have
have behaved otherwise.
Need for affiliationthe desire for
friendly and close interpersonal rela-
tionships .
McClelland's research suggests that these motives
have important implications for organizational selection.
For example, an individual who has a high affiliation
need and low need for power and who is placed in a job
requiring a strong need for power in order to be effec-
tive, will have the wrong motivating forces to be
successful in the job. More specifically, McClelland
argues that the needs for affiliation and power tend to
be closely related to managerial success. He reports


32
that his studies in organizations offer strong evidence
that the best managers are high in the need for power and
low in their need for affiliation (McClelland, 1961).
From these four theories reviewed, it is possible
to identify hundreds, possibly even thousands of needs.
Since many of them overlap, efforts have been directed
towards isolating a short list of important needs that
are substantially independent,of each other. One of
these lists, is the following suggested by Lawler (1973):
1. A number of "existence" needs, including sex,
hunger, thirst and oxygen.
2. A security need.
3. A social need.
4. A need for esteem and reputation
5. A need for self control and independence
6. A need for competence, achievement and self
realization.
Intrinsic vs. Extrinsic Motives
The needs groups identified above could be
satisfied in two ways. The first five can only be
satisfied by some external or extrinsic outcome that has
concrete reality for a person. Food, shelter, money and
compliments are examples of such extrinsic outcomes or
motives. On the other hand, needs like achievement,
accomplishment and self-actualization are basically


33
satisfied by outcomes that individuals give themselves or
intrinsic motives (Robbins, 1979).
The study of the interaction of intrinsic and
extrinsic incentives or motives is a relatively new area
in motivation theory. Edward Deci is the primary and
most influential scholar in this area. He and his
associates define extrinsic motives as: "the value an
individual places on the end of an action"; and intrinsic
motives as: "the pleasure or value accounted with the
activity itself".
Deci proposed that intrinsically motivated
behavior has two characteristics (aspects). Where there
is no stimulation, people will seek it. A person who
gets no stimulation will not feel competent and self
determining. So he seeks out the opportunity to behave
in ways which allow him to feel so. He will seek out
challenges. The other aspect of intrinsically motivated
behavior involves conquering challenges, only when a
person is able to conquer challenge which he/she en-
counters or creates will he/she feel competent and self
determining. In short, people seem to engage in general
in the general process of seeking and conquering challen-
ges which are optimal for them (Deci, 1976).


Work involvement
Kane (1977) suggested that work involvement (as
well as its opposite work alienation) can be concep-
tualized as the extent to which one looks to work to
provide the total amount of intrinsic fulfillment desired
from life in general". An employee is completely work
involved when this proportion equals 100 percent and
completely work alienated when it equals zero percent.
As illustrated in Figure 2.1.
This conceptualization has the following aspects:
First, it is a characteristic of the worker rather than
of work. Second it is a condition that is cognitive
rather than affective in nature. Third, it includes the
entire domain of intrinsically fulfilled needs and not
only.one or a subset of the higher-order needs. Examples
of such needs are accomplishment, self-actualization,
self expression and engagement in activities which are
interesting and enjoyable for their own seifs.
Since people spend more time at work (almost
third of their waking hours) than at any other single
place; it is logical that Kane regards work "as poten-
tially the major life activity through which working
persons can obtain intrinsic fulfillment." Thus an


35
B.
C.
0%_________________________50%______________________100%
Percentage of intrinsic fulfillment being fulfilled by work
Shaded areas reflect non-work activities, e.g., family, religion,
sports, hobbles, etc.
A. Work does not provide any intrinsic fulfillment for employees
needs. The employee is completely work alienated.
B. Work provides only half the intrinsic fulfillment for the
employees needs. The worker Is 50% work involved.
C. Work totally fulfills the employees intrinsic needs. She/he is
completely work involved.
Figure 2.1. Kanes Conceptualization of Work Involvement


36
assessment of the relative importance of work, in com-
parison with other life activities regarding their
potential as sources of intrinsic fulfillment is an
indication of the employees level of work involvement.
This conceptualization helps in explaining how
employees who work in jobs that are frustrating to them
can cope. According to Kane they adapt to such jobs by
seizing to look to work as a source of the rewards that
produce intrinsic fulfillment and yet continue to work
for the extrinsic rewards it offers (Kane 1977). For
example if a lawyer works in a job that doesnt allow him
to fulfill his need for accomplishment, he will continue
to work to fulfill his economic and social needs which
are externally fulfilled, but he might seek fulfilling
his need for accomplishment in playing golf.
Discrepancy Theory of job satisfaction
Locks (1969, 1976) discrepancy theory states
that satisfaction or dissatisfaction with some aspects of
the job reflects a dual value judgement: (1) The per-
ceived discrepancy between what an individual wants and
what is received. (2) The importance of what is wanted
to the individual. Thus, overall Job satisfaction for an
employee is the sum of each of the aspects of Job
satisfaction multiplied by the importance of each aspect
for that employee. For example, extra vacation time- an


37
outcome- should enhance satisfaction for an employee who
enjoys time off from work. However the same amount of
extra vacation time would be a source of dislike to
another employee for whom leisure time is unpleasant.
Locke (1976) after reviewing the literature cited the
following features of work itself as being related to Job
satisfaction: Variety, difficulty, amount of work,
responsibility, autonomy, control over work methods,
complexity and creativity. While these are distin-
guishable features of the work assignment, they share one
common element, a high level of mental challenge. He
concluded that unchallenging jobs are likely to generate
boredom and uninvolvement and that appropriately chal-
lenged employees are successful and committed.
The Job Characteristic Model
This model of job design was proposed by Hackman
and Oldham (1975) and has received the widest attention
among the several recent attempts that investigate how
work design influences employees and their behavior. The
model summarizes and integrates much of the earlier work
in the area (Turner and Lawrence, 1965; Trist, 1970;
Hackman and Lawless, 1971).
The basic job characteristics model is shown in
Figure 2.2. As illustrated in the figure, five core job
dimensions are seen as creating three psychological


38
Skill variety
Task identity S.
Task significance
Experienced
^ meaningfulness of the
work
Autonomy

Experienced
responsibility for outcomes
of the work
>
High internal
work motivation
High growth"
satisfaction
High general
job satisfaction
Knowledge of the actual
Feedback from job results of the work
activities
Moderators:
4 1 1. Knowledge and skill
2. Growth need strengths _
[* 3. Context** satisfactions
High work
effectiveness
Figure 2.2. The Job Characteristics Model
Source: J. R. Hackman and G. R. Oldham, Work Redesign
(1980)


39
states that, in turn, lead to a number of beneficial
personal and work outcomes. The link among the job
dimensions, the psychological states, and the outcomes
are shown to be moderated by three factors. They are (1)
knowledge and skill, (2) growth need strength and (3)
satisfaction with work content. The major classes of
variables in the model are reviewed briefly below.
Psychological states. The three following states
are considered critical in affecting a persons motiva-
tion and satisfaction on the job:
(1) Experienced meaningfulness: The person must
experience the work as generally important, valuable and
worthwhile.
(2) Experienced responsibility: The individual
must feel personally responsible and accountable for the
results of the work he performs.
(3) Knowledge of results: The individual must
have an understanding, on a fairly regular basis, of how
effectively he is performing the job.
The more these three conditions are present, the
more people will feel good about themselves when they
perform well. Or, following Hackmans explanation
(1976), the model suggests that internal rewards are
obtained by an individual when he learns (knowledge of
results) that he personally (experienced responsibility)
has performed well on a task that he cares about (ex-


perienced meaningfulness). These internal rewards are
reinforcing to the individual and serve as incentives for
continued efforts to perform well in the future. When
the person does not perform well, he does not experience
reinforcement, and he may elect to try harder in the
future so as to regain the rewards that good performance
brings. The result is a self-perpetuating cycle of
positive work motivation powered by self-generated
rewards. This cycle is predicted to continue until one
or more of the three psychological states is no longer
present, or until the individual no longer values the
internal rewards that he derives from good performance.
Job dimensions. What activates these psychologi-
cal states? According to Figure 2.2, five job dimensions
combine to determine motivation level:
Skill variety: The degree to which a job requires
a variety of different activities that involve the use of
a number of different skills and talents.
Task identity: The degree to which the job
requires completion of a whole and identifiable piece of
work, that is, doing a job from beginning to end with a
visible outcome.
Task significance: The degree to which a job has
a substantial impact on the lives or work of other
people, in the immediate organization or in the external
environment.


41
Autonomy: The degree to which a job provides
substantial freedom, independence and discretion to an
individual in scheduling work and in determining the
procedures to be used in carrying it out.
Feedback: The degree to which carrying out work
activities is required by the job results in individuals
obtaining direct and clear information about the effec-
tiveness of their performance.
The first three job dimensions above are believed
to influence the experienced meaningfulness of work, as
shown in Figure 2.2. Autonomy influences experienced
responsibility for work outcomes, while feedback influen-
ces knowledge of results. Any work design should,
according to the model, attempt to develop jobs that are
high in these core dimensions.
The job dimensions are often measured using a
questionnaire developed by Hackman and Oldham (1975) (The
Job Diagnostic Survey). Based on this questionnaire, it
is possible to calculate a motivating potential score
(MPS) which simply reflects the extent to which employees
see their jobs as motivating. According to the model, a
high motivating potential score is only possible if a job
is high on at least one of the three dimensions that
influence experienced meaningfulness, and high on
autonomy and high on feedback. The existence of these
three dimensions creates the necessary work environment


42
for all three critical psychological states. Mathemati-
cally, then, the MPS can be calculated as follows:
Motivating Potential Score = [Skill Variety + Task
Identity + Task Significance/3] X autonomy X
feedback.
This formula shows that a near-zero score on any
of the three factors will reduce the MPS score to a near
zero. Again, it is important to note that all three
factors are important in work design.
The Moderators. (1) Knowledge and Skill: In
order for employees to benefit from jobs high in motivat-
ing potential, the should have sufficient knowledge and
skill to perform their work well. When people are given
highly motivating tasks that they are unable to perform
successfully, they will experience a good deal of
unhappiness and frustration. Such individuals frequently
opt to withdraw from the job- either behaviorally, by
changing jobs or psychologically, by convincing them-
selves that in fact they do not care about the work.
Either outcome is an undesirable state of affairs both
for the individual and for the organizations.
(2) Employee growth-need strength: Hackman and
Oldham use growth-need strength (GNS) to refer to a
collection of higher-order needs (achievement, autonomy)
which are believed to moderate the way in which employees
react to the work environment. This influence emerges at


43
two points in the model (see Figure 2.2). First,
employees with high growth need strengths are more likely
to experience the desired psychological state when their
objective job has been enriched than those with low GNS.
This occurs because, based on their needs, they are more
sensitive to (have a greater demand for) those job
characteristics.
Second, high GNS individuals tend to respond more
favorably to the psychological states when they occur
than do low GNS individuals, since these states are most
likely to facilitate the satisfaction of these higher-
order needs. For instance, a person who has a high need
for achievement can satisfy that need by successfully
performing challenging tasks (High MPS). On the other
hand, a person with a low need for achievement, may
experience frustration or anxiety by being placed on such
a job.
The role of individual differences must be
recognized when designing work for people. It must be
recognized that enriched jobs may have greater impact on
some people (high GNS) than on others.
(3) Satisfaction with work context: It is
important for people to be satisfied with aspects of
their work context to take advantage of the opportunities
for personal accomplishment provided by challenging work.


44
Specifically employees should be relatively satisfied .
with pay, job security, co-workers and supervision.
Personal and Work Outcomes: Finally, the model
indicates that several personal and work-related outcomes
result from the combination of psychological states and
motivators. Specifically, when people experience the
psychological states described above, we expect them to
exhibit high levels of internal work motivation, high
quality of performance, high job satisfaction, and low
turnover and absenteeism. While the psychological states
are clearly not the only variables to effect these
outcomes, they are believed to be an important influence
(Hackman and Oldham, 1980).
Public Professionals* Quality of Work Life
Mosher (1968) pointed out that since 1955 there
has been a widespread rise of professionals in the public
sector. This was echoed by George Gordon (1982) and
Cherniss and Kane (1987). They noted that the public
sector has become the largest employer of professionals.
This development has posed some problems for both
public human resources management (PHRM) and public
organization behavior (POB). For Personnel Administra-
tion it has meant that rules and regulations sufficient
to cover traditional civil servants in the past are no
longer flexible enough. For example, separate salary


45
schedules have had to be established for professionals in
architecture, engineering, medicine, nursing, law,
veterinary medicine and others.
However, the most important impact of profes-
sionalism on PHRM has been a conceptual one: the most
common emphasis since 1883 has been on the job, the
position, and formal responsibilities associated with it.
The rise of professionals has created a new emphasis, an
emphasis on the people filling government posts and on
their own needs within occupations. The conflict between
the two emphasis has created new stresses in personnel
systems (Gordon, 1982).
Public organization behavior, on the other hand,
has been faced with the problem of the motivation, morale
and performance of the public sector professionals.
While some, such as Sarason (1977), Abrahamson (1967)>
Hall (1968) and Von Glinow (1983). proposed that these
professionals initially approach work with higher
expectations concerning autonomy and intrinsic fulfill-
ment. But, instead, they usually find themselves in
highly routinized jobs, constrained by close supervision
and rigid bureaucratic control. A second group of social
scientists, however, argue that professional work, even
in the public sector, is less frustrating and more
fulfilling than lower level jobs (Bartol, 1979; Gwin,


Varoff and Gled, I960; Mannheim, 1975; Van Fossen, 1979;
Cherniss and Kane, 1987).
Cherniss and Kane (1987), in a review of the
literature, have concluded that although there has been
few studies that dealt with work experience of profes-
sionals in the public and private sector, none has
considered public sector professionals as a distinct
occupational group. Their work was the first to do so.
Two computer searches by the writer confirmed that. The
first covered the literature of public periodicals over a
twenty year period. The second researched doctoral
dissertations in political science/public administration
over a 128 year period (since 1861). Although the
searches were extensive, no compatible work to the study
conducted by Cherniss and Kane was found.
For example, the study by Mirvis and Hackett
(1983) did not separate employees by occupational level.
And the works of Smith and Nock (1980) and Cacioppe and
Mock (1984) have combined professionals with managerial
and even clerical workers to form a high status or
"white collar" group. They found that the high status
public sector employees were less satisfied than their
counterparts in the private sector. Dissatisfaction with
intrinsic aspects of the work was particularly great. On
the other hand, these studies found that within the


47
public sector, high status employees were more satisfied
than low status employees.
The research focusing specifically on profes-
sionals was (1) limited to certain professions that may
be employed in public sector settings, e.g., social
workers; (2) focused only on professionals working in the
private sector; or (3) has combined private sector and
public sector professionals in one group (Realin 1984).
Other relevant research has revealed that high
status employees in the public sector- such as profes-
sionals- have a particularly strong need for intrinsic
fulfillment (Newstrom, Reif and Monczka, 1976; Cacioppi
and Mock, 1984). However, Searson (1977) and Raelin
(1984) cautioned that professional jobs in large bureau-
cracies are thought to be limited in the key job dimen-
sions of task autonomy, skill variety, feedback from the
job and task significance. As a consequence, it is
feared that public professionals might not have high
internal work motivation nor high job satisfaction
[(Hackman and Oldham, 1975)- as explained earlier].
Finally, McKelvey (1979), Bailyn (1977) and Raelin (1984)
have suggested that many salaried professionals adapt to
such jobs, which are low in intrinsic fulfillment by
lowering their aspiration for such fulfillment in the
work situation. They detach from their jobs and pursue
their intrinsic fulfillment in non-work commitments, such


48
as family and leisure activities. This lowering of
aspiration for intrinsic fulfillment through work enables
the individual to be relatively satisfied even with a
lower-than-ideal job (Cherniss and Kane, 1987).
In their pioneering study, Cherniss and Kane
(1987) compared professionals and blue collar workers
employed in a state government in the U. S. to address
three questions:
1. How motivating are public sector professional
jobs? How do they compare with lower-level jobs in
autonomy, task identity, and other factors that affect a
jobs motivating potential?
2. How satisfied are public sector professionals
with their jobs.
3. To what extent do public sector professionals
believe that intrinsic fulfillment should come through
work compared to non-work areas of their lives?
The subjects (252) worked in multiple sites
throughout the state and represented a random sample of
state employees stratified on the basis of salary level
and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission Occupational
Categories. Data were collected by trained interviewers
using the following questionnaires:
- Job Diagnostic Survey (by Hackman and Oldham,
1975) which measured job characteristics.


49
- The Minnesota Satisfaction Questionnaire- long
form- (by Weiss, Davis, England and Lofquist, 1967) which
measures job satisfaction.
- Quality of Life Survey (Kane, 1977) which
measured intrinsic and extrinsic needs and their fulfill-
ment through work and non-work sources.
The results (illustrated in Table 2.1) suggest
that generally professionals perceived their jobs to
possess lower levels of intrinsically fulfilling charac-
teristics than did blue collar workers. On the key job
dimensions of autonomy, task significance, task identity
and skill variety. Professionals reported significantly
lower values on each characteristic than blue collar
workers did. Also, contrary to what one might expect,
the professionals did not experience their work as more
meaningful and did not score higher on internal work
motivation. However, there was no significant difference
between the two groups in either job satisfaction or
intrinsic need satisfaction. This unexpected result was
explained by the level of aspiration for intrinsic
fulfillment through work. Professionals, in the first
place, did not look to work as a major source of fulfill-
ment for their intrinsic needs. So they were not
disappointed or dissatisfied.


50
Table 2.1
Mean Scores on Job Characteristics for
Two Measure Groups of Workers Professional Blue Collar t
Job characteristics:3
Skill variety 4.49 (114) 5.00 (134) 4.13f
Task identity 3.92 (114) 4.47 (133) 4.40?
Task significance 3.89 (114) 4.24 (133) 3-03f
Autonomy 3.95 (114) 4.23 (135) 2.31e
Feedback from job 4.46 (114) 4.37 (133) .69
Feedback from agents 4.17 (114) 4.13 (134) .31
Dealing with others 5.06 (114) 5.26 (134) 1.55
Meaningfulness 3.77 (114) 3.79 (121) -.33
Responsibility for work 4.49 (114) 4.41 (122) 1.34
Knowledge of results 4.19 (114) 4.37 (122) 2.48
Internal work motivation 4.92 (114) 4.78 (122) 1.80
Motivating Potential
Scores 218.4 (114) 265.7 (133) 3.256
Job satisfaction
Work satisfaction13 3.76 (115) 3.60 (137) 1.36
Intrinsic need
satisfaction0 6.04 (114) 6.10 (128) .37
Aspiration for intrinsic
fulfillment through
workd -18.58 (105) 39.39 (102) 4.02**
aMaximum scores on these items = 7, with exception of Motivating
Potential Score.
bMaximum score =5.
GMaximum score = 8.
dA higher score on this scale represents a belief that more
intrinsic fulfillment should come through work compared to
nonwork areas of one's life.
ep < .05.
fp < .005.
Source: C. Cherniss and J. Kane, "Public Sector Profes-
sionals: Job Characteristics, Satisfactions and Aspira-
tions for Intrinsic Fulfillment Through Work," Human
Relations, 40(3), 1987, pp. 125-136.


51
These findings did not agree with some of the
earlier research which suggests that professionals are
more satisfied with their work than lower level occupa-
tional groups (Bartol, 1979; Guerin, et al., I960;
Mannheim, 1975; Van Fossen, 1979). This contradiction
might be explained by the fact that these earlier studies
have combined public sector, private sector and self-
employed professionals into one group. It is possible
that the quality of work life of each of these subgroups
of professionals differed considerably.
It also showed that when public sector profes-
sionals were singled out, they did not turn out to be
more satisfied with their work than public sector blue-
collar workers. This contradicted the research that
combined professionals with managers and technicians into
a high status government employees and found that they
were more satisfied compared to the lower status emplo-
yees (Smith and Nock, 1980; Cacioppe and Mock, 1984).
However, it provided a possible explanation to another
finding of these same studies. They reported that high
status public employees find their jobs to be deficient
in intrinsic rewards compared to their private sector
counterparts. The finding that the jobs of a subgroup of
the professionals (the public sector professionals) had
less autonomy, skill variety, task identity and task


52
significance than lower status employees in the same work
settings might be the explanation.
Finally, Cherniss and Kane (1987) called for
further research to validate their findings and explore
its implications for important behavioral outcomes, such
as motivation, absenteeism and turnover.
Nature of the Research Problem
As indicated in Chapter 1, public policy is
greatly influenced, and at times almost totally con-
trolled, by an expensive and politically powerful
occupational group: the public professionals. Because of
their crucial role in determining societys welfare the
best and maximum job performance is sought from them.
But what if the jobs that those public profes-
sionals occupy were designed in a way that they do not
facilitate appropriate amounts of intrinsic fulfillment
for their needs, as found by Cherniss and Kane (1987).
How will this effect their internal work motivation? Job
satisfaction? Work involvement? Absenteeism and
turnover rates? And, eventually, job performance?
Using a conceptual model (Figure 2.3) based on
the theories and studies reviewed in this chapter, this
dissertation explores and describes intrinsic job
characteristics (VI) of professional jobs in a state
government and explains their effect on the internal work


Cognitive Process (Inside the professionals
mind; inferred but not observed)
*Flnal outcomes not investigated in this dissertation
Immediate Outcomes
ntrinsicWork
Motivation (V2)
Work Involvement
V4)
Job Satisfaction (V3)
Affective
(Observed
1 behavior)
Work
| >er-
$ ormancc
1 Quantity
| ind
| duality)*

|
Absent-
eeism
and
Turn-
if: over*
Fieure 2.3. The Perceived Relationship among
the Dissertation Variables


54
motivation (V2), job satisfaction (V3) and work involve-
ment (V4) of the professional employees who occupy them.
This effect is influenced by a secondary outcome (growth
satisfaction, V8) and three sets of moderators: extrinsic
job dimensions (V5), intrinsic needs fulfillment variable
(V6) and demographic factors (V7). All of these vari-
ables and their components are listed in Table 2.2.
The Research Questions
This dissertation is guided by the following five
research questions:
(1) What are the levels of public sector profes-
sionals job characteristics, work motivation, job
satisfaction and work involvement?
(2) Are the findings of Cherniss and Kane
generalizable to other governmental settings?
(3) What are the factors that affect the work
motivation, job satisfaction and work involvement of
public sector professionals?
(4) Is there any relation between work motiva-
tion, job satisfaction and work involvement?
(5) Are the factors that affect public sector
professionals' work motivation, job satisfaction and work
involvement different from those that affect blue
collars' work motivation, job satisfaction and work
involvement?


55
Table 2.2 LIST OF VARIABLES
V1 Intrinsic job characteristics (includes skill variety, task identity, task sig- nificance, autonomy and feedback as sum- marized by MPS)
V 2 Work motivation
V 3 Job satisfaction
vn Work involvement
V5 Extrinsic job factors, including
V. .5.1. feedback from others on job perfor-
V, V. V. V. V. mance ; ,5.2. dealing with others; ,5.3. pay satisfaction; ,5.^. security satisfaction; .5.5. social satisfaction; .5.6. supervisory satisfaction.
V6 Intrinsic needs fulfillment variables
V.6.1. individual growth need strength;
V.6.2. importance of intrinsic needs;
V.6.3. job fulfillment of intrinsic needs;
V.6.4. satisfaction with job fulfillment of
V. intrinsic needs; ,6.5. satisfaction with fulfillment of intrinsic needs for life in general.
V7 Demographic factors
V. .7.1. age
V.7.2. sex
V.7.3. education
V.7.4. race
V8 Growth satisfaction


56
In order to answer these research questions, the
following theoretical assumptions had to be made.
1. Intrinsic job characteristics (V1) is the
major independent variable.
2. Extrinsic job factors (V5), intrinsic needs
fulfillment variables (V6), demographic factors (V7), and
growth satisfaction (V8) are the minor independent
variables.
3. Intrinsic work motivation (V2), job satisfac-
tion (V3) and work involvement (V4) are the dependent
variables.
3. All variables can be accurately observed and
measured.
Hypothesis
The null hypotheses (Hp):
Hoi: There is no difference between public sector
professionals and blue collar workers with regard to the
individual and groups of the following variables:
intrinsic job characteristics (V1), work motivation (V2),
job satisfaction (V3), work involvement (V4), extrinsic
job factors (V5), intrinsic needs fulfillment variables
(V6), demographic factors (V7) and growth satisfaction
(V8).


57
Hq2: The intrinsic job characteristics of public
sector professionals (V1) has no effect on the dependent
variables [work motivation (V2), job satisfaction (V3)
and work involvement (V^)].
H03: None of the minor independent variables
[extrinsic job factors (V5), intrinsic needs fulfillment
variables (V6), demographic variables (V7) and growth
satisfaction (V8)] of public sector professionals has any
effect on the dependent variables [work motivation (V2),
job satisfaction (V3) and work involvement (V4)].
HoH: The dependent variables [work motivation
(V2)f job satisfaction (V3) and work involvement (V4)D
have no effect on each other.
H05: The factors that effect the dependent
variables [work motivation (V2), job satisfaction (V3),
and work involvement (V4)] are the same for both groups.
The alternative hypotheses:
Based on the literature reviewed in this chapter,
specifically the work of Cherniss and Kane as well as
that of Hackman and Oldham, the following alternative
hypotheses are suggested.
H-| : The intrinsic job characteristics (VI), work
motivation (V2), job satisfaction (V3), work involvement
(V1!) and intrinsic needs fulfillment variables (V6) of


58
public sector professionals is lower than that of blue
collar workers.
H2: The extrinsic job factors (V5), growth needs
strength and education of public sector professionals are
higher than those of blue collar workers.
H3: Intrinsic job characteristics (VI) have a
greater effect on professionals' work motivation (V2),
job satisfaction (V3) and work involvement (V4) than do
extrinsic job factors (V5), intrinsic needs fulfillment
variables (V6), demographic variables (V7) and growth
satisfaction (V8).
Hij: Work motivation (V2) has an effect on job
satisfaction (V3) and work involvement (V4).
H5: The factors that effect the work motivation
(V2), job satisfaction (V3) and work involvement (V4) of
public sector professionals are different from those that
effect the same variables for blue collar workers.
(Specifically, PSP's work motivation (V2), job satisfac-
tion (V3) and Work involvement (V4) will be affected by
intrinsic needs fulfillment variables (V6) more than blue
collar workers' variables. PSPs work motivation (V2),
job satisfaction (V3) and work involvement (V4) will be
affected by extrinsic job variables (V5) less than blue
collar workers.)


59
Summary
This chapter has quickly reviewed the literature
from which the dissertation's research problem was
conceptually derived. The two categories of work
motivation theories showed that employees have various
needs that they try to satisfy either intrinsically or
extrinsically. An important source of both kinds is
work. If, however, an employee could not find intrinsic
fulfillment for his needs from work, he becomes work
alienated. His levels of work motivation and job
satisfaction will be low. Unfortunately, the pioneering
work of Cherniss and Kane (1987) suggests that this is
the case for public sector professionals.
This dissertation aims at validating and expand-
ing on this research by seeking the answers to the five
research questions and ten hypotheses which were presen-
ted at the end of this chapter.


Chapter III
RESEARCH METHODOLOGY
Introduction
This chapter addresses the research methodology
of the dissertation. It is divided into five sections.
The first introduces the research design. The second
presents its operationalization and the third covers
sampling. The instruments, procedures of data collection
and its response rate are discussed in the fourth
section. The last section summarizes the chapter.
The Design
Survey research will be utilized to answer the
research questions and to test the hypotheses.
The intent of this dissertation was to compare
professionals with what is perceived to be their opposite
occupational group, blue collar workers. It is known
that professional jobs have much more prestige and
influence and also require higher qualifications than
blue collar jobs. Consequently, their job design should
provide greater skill variety, task identity, autonomy
and so on. It is also known that public professionals
are paid more and enjoy more job security than blue


61
collars. This would suggest a level of job satisfaction
that is higher than that of blue collar workers. Because
this work is a replication of Cherniss and Kane, the
researcher sought to utilize their operationalization,
instruments and sampling categories (professional versus
blue collars) to promote compatibility of the findings.
Operationalization
The Occupational Groups
Cherniss and Kane's (1987) operationalization for
the work groups will be used here. It is based on the
Department of Labor's Dictionary of Occupations
definition for occupational groups. These definitions
are also used by the state government whose workers
participated in this survey to classify its employees.
A profession will be operationalized as an
occupation which require specialized and theoretical
knowledge which is usually acquired through college
training or through work experience and other training
which provides comparable knowledge.
Blue collar workers are composed of two cate-
gories :
(1) Skilled craft workers, occupations in which
workers perform jobs which require special manual skill
and a thorough and comprehensive knowledge of the process
involved in the work which is acquired through on the job


62
training and experience or through apprenticeship or
other formal training programs.
(2) And the service/maintenance category which is
operationalized as occupations in which workers perform
duties which result in or contribute to the comfort,
convenience, hygiene or safety of the general public or
which contribute to the upkeep and care of buildings,
facilities, or grounds of public property.
The Work Variables
All variables were measured using a self-
administered, written survey (Appendix B). The variables
were operationalized as follows:
Intrinsic Job Characteristics (V1): This is
operationalized as the degree to which the inner design
of a job has skill variety, task identity, task
significance, autonomy and feedback from the job and are
gaged by an index called Motivating Potential Score (MPS)
(Hackman and Oldham, 1980).
Work Motivation (V2). This is operationalized as
"the inner status of (1) the degree of intensity to which
a person is energized to whatever relates to the job
(e.g., pushed to work, do minimum required, or
voluntarily doing more); (2) the direction of this
energy, positive or negative (e.g., quality and quantity


63
of work); and (3) maintaining the behavior (e.g., being
motivated for long periods or for only short periods)
(Steers, 1981). This is measured by questions number 1,
3, 5 and 7 of Section 3 of Part One of the instrument.
Job Satisfaction (V3) This is operationalized
as a pleasurable or positive emotional state resulting
from receiving outcomes from a job that meet or exceed
the employees expectations (Locke, 19767), e.g., an
assignment that is challenging to an employee who likes
challenges. This is measured by questions number 2, 4
and 6 of Section Three of Part One of the instrument.
Work Involvement (V4). This is operationalized as
the degree to which work, in comparison with other ac-
tivities, is regarded as a potential source of
fulfillment for the intrinsic needs of the employee (Kane
1977). It is measured by question number 2 from Part
Two.
Extrinsic Job Factors (V5). The factors that are
related to the job but do not directly influence its
inner design. For example, satisfaction with pay or job
security (extrinsic factors) are related to the job but
do not show how it is designed, like task identity and
skill variety, which are intrinsic characteristics. All
the extrinsic job factors are measured by part one of the


64
instrument (J.D.S.). Table 3.1 lists the questions that
measure each of its subcomponents.
Table 3.1
ITEMS OF THE INSTRUMENT USED TO MEASURE EXTRINSIC
JOB FACTORS (V5)
THE fACTOR SECTION NO. QUESTION NO.
V.5.1 Feedback from others on job performance 1 6
2 10,7
V.5.2 Dealing with others 1 1
2 2,6
V.5.3. Pay satisfaction 4 2,9
V.5.4. Security satisfaction 4 1,11
V.5.5. Social satisfaction 4 4,7,12
V.5.6. Supervisory satisfaction 4 5,8,14
Intrinsic Needs Fulfillment Variables (V6). These
variables reflect the fulfillment of intrinsic needs.
These are the needs that are not fulfilled materially or
tangibly. In other words, obtaining money, promotions
and fringe benefits are not the ways to satisfy intrinsic
needs. They are to be gratified by inner feelings (e.g.,
doing an activity just to enjoy it). Hunger is not an


65
intrinsic need because it can be fulfilled tangibly by
food. Affiliation and accomplishments are intrinsic
needs because what fulfills them is a feeling that is not
material. Table 3.2 lists the survey items that measures
each of these variables.
Table 3.2
ITEMS OF THE INSTRUMENT USED TO MEASURE INTRINSIC
NEEDS FULFILLMENT VARIABLES (V6)
VARIABLE PART (SECTION) QUESTIONS
V.6.1 Individual growth
needs strength One (five) 2,3.6,8,
10,11
V.6.2 Importance of
intrinsic needs Two 1
V.6.3 Job fulfillment of
intrinsic needs Two 3
V.6.4 Satisfaction with
' job fulfillment of
intrinsic needs Two 5
V.6.5 Satisfaction with
fulfillment of intrinsic
needs from life in
general Two 4
Demographic Variables (V7): The sex, formal
education, ethnic background and age of the respondent.
Other Dependent Outcomes: (V8) Growth
satisfaction. Satisfaction with the job fulfillment of a
set of intrinsic needs that concentrates on one's


66
personal development. These needs are composed of: (1)
the growth level of Alderfer's (1969) ERG theory; (2) the
intrinsic component of Maslow's (1943) esteem category
and the characteristics included under self-
actualization; (3) Murray's (1938) needs of autonomy
achievement and understanding and McClelland's (1961)
need for achievement. This variable is measured by
questions number 3 6, 10 and 13 of Section Four of Part
One.
The Sample
Five hundred professional and blue collar workers
(250 from each category) were randomly selected from a
single state government. State universities and colleges
were purposely excluded from the sample population
because of their unique work setting and educational
backgrounds. This sample design was similar to that used
by Cherniss and Kane (1987).
The state government sample was randomly drawn by
computer from its classified work force as of July 22,
1988 by a personnel department manager in one of the
State's cabinet level departments. An examination of the
sample characteristics compared to the general charac-
teristics of the population assured that the sample was
fairly representative of the population as shown in
Appendix A.


67
The reason behind choosing 500 employees is to
insure that if the response rate were low, the number of
completed surveys returned would be sufficient for data
analysis. Response rate is discussed below.
Data Collection
The Instrument
In the pre-test stage,, the researcher tried to
use Cherniss and Kanes original instruments to ensure
compatibility of the findings. Unfortunately, these
instruments (three different and quite long
questionnaires) were not appropriate for self-
administered mailed surveys. The researcher was advised
by two senior researchers who have expertise in survey
research to combine the three questionnaires into one
survey and to make it as short as possible. This was
accomplished by using the short form of the Job
Diagnostic Survey (Hack and Oldham, 197*0 to gauge
intrinsic job characteristics, work motivation, all of
the extrinsic job factors, growth needs strength and
growth satisfaction. This short form has been widely
used and validated in numerous publications. This survey
also measured job satisfaction and it is the third in
usage after the Minnesota Satisfaction Questionnaire and
the Job Description Index (Oldham, personal interview,
1 989).


68
Work involvement, importance of intrinsic needs,
job fulfillment of intrinsic needs, satisfaction with job
fulfillment of intrinsic needs and satisfaction of
fulfillment of intrinsic needs from life in general were
measured by a modified version of the Quality of Life
Survey (copyrighted by Jeffrey S. Kane in 1988 and used
after the original authors permission). This instrument
was developed by Kane for his Ph.D. dissertation. The
validity of this instrument was proven both in its design
and in subsequent usage in other works. It took four
different trials to reach a self-administered version
which is easy to complete and simple to understand but
also consistent with the goal of replicating Cherniss and
Kane. After a pilot sample of 40, from the original 500
(both groups), received the instrument, a fifth and final
version was developed and used.
The Procedure
Ideally, the researcher wanted to gather the
respondents in key locations and administer the survey to
them, as Cherniss and Kane did. This would have insured
a higher response rate and reduced errors. When the
participants of the survey are gathered together, the
researcher can clarify for them unclear items and show
them the manner in which to complete the survey.
Unfortunately, a senior official at the State Department


69
of Personnel informed the researcher that such a
gathering was highly unfeasible. Respondents were
literally scattered throughout the state which meant that
other than the major cities, the researcher had to visit
almost each prospective respondent. This is both time
consuming and expensive. Gathering some and mailing
others was not accepted because the data would be biased.
Those gathered in key places where the researcher or his
assistants were assembled had an advantage of explaining
unclear items which the others did not.
To test the instrument and to estimate the
anticipated response rate, a pilot sample of ^0 was
chosen randomly from the 500 employees. A cover letter
signed by the Associate Dean of the Graduate School of
Public Affairs- and the advisor of this project- was
enclosed with the survey. An almost 60? response rate
was received, but blue collar workers found it difficult
to understand and respond accurately to the work
involvement parts. A revision of this part of the survey
was done in order to simplify the instrument.
Before mailing the surveys to the entire sample,
an article was written by the researcher in the widely
circulated State Civil Service Newsletter which
highlighted the importance of the research and encouraged
participation in the project.


70
The surveys were mailed first class which insured
that within two to three business days that all
participants could have received the instrument.
The same letter signed by the Associate Dean
(Appendix C) and a self-addressed stamped envelope was
included. The respondents were requested to return the
instrument within 4 days at the latest.
Another short article in the State Civil Service
Newsletter appeared reminding respondents to return the
instruments.
Six weeks were allowed before collection was
considered complete. No follow up post cards were mailed
due to time constraints and the return of a sufficient
number of respondents.
Response Rate
The response rate for the survey, while not
ideal, was acceptable. Out of the 460 professional and
blue collar workers (230 each), 21 blue collars and 21
professionals' surveys were returned by the post office
with no forwarding addresses. Out of the 418 employees
who received the survey, 203 returned it. This means
that the overall response rate is approximately 49%.
However, only 164 (95 professionals and 69 blue collar
workers) had complete answers. The rest had 3 or more
non-demographic items missing or incomplete. This


71
dropped the overall completed response rate to 39?. The
professionals completed response rate was 47.3?. while
that of the blue collars was 34.3?.
The fact that the return rate was not 100? raises
the possibility that the findings might be biased due to
self selection. To guard against such bias, the
researcher examined the returned questionnaires (both
accepted and rejected) for possible problems. Education
effect on understanding the survey was the main concern
for bias, which proved invalid. Respondents with as low
an education as 8th and 9th grades did answer the
instrument completely and correctly. Similarly,
respondents with high levels of education left sections
and even all of part two of the instrument unanswered.
The researcher also checked with others who did
such research in the state government. Their feedback
was that such low responses were not unusual. As a
matter of fact, one of the reasons for the over sampling
of blue collar workers is to ensure that even for a low
response, sufficient completed surveys will be returned
to allow analysis.
There may be several possible reasons for this
low response. First is the difficulty of Part 2 of the
instrument. 9? of the respondents were eliminated
because they left this part of the questionnaire blank.
The researcher was aware of the complexity of Kane's


72
instrument and simplified it many times. However, any
further simplification meant the compromise of the
richness of the data and replication of Cherniss and
Kane.
Second is the probability that people may have
felt that the survey asked items that are confidential.
The first part asked questions about the job. The second
asked about the respondents personal intrinsic need
fulfillment and this included both work and non-work
aspects. To guard against such a reaction, the
respondents were assured confidentiality twice: in the
cover letter signed by the researchers advisor (the as-
sociate dean of his school) and in the introduction to
the first part of the survey.
The third possible explanation for the low
response might reflect the fact that some people just do
not care about surveys, regardless of their content.
In general, the researcher views the non-response
as a normal obstacle in survey research and it does not
indicate necessarily a bias.
The following tables provide descriptive statis-
tics on the professional and blue collar respondents,
analyzed by gender, race, education and age. These
tables, combined with Appendix A, show that the
respondents to the survey were still representative of
both the population and the initial sample.


73
TABLE 3.3
SURVEY RESPONDENTS ANALYZED BY GENDER
Professionals Blue Collars
Frequency % Frequency nr
Male 58 61 .1 60 87
Female 35 36.8 9 13
Missing 2 2.1 0 0
Total 95 100 69 100
TABLE 3.4
SURVEY RESPONDENTS ANALYZED BY RACE
Professionals Blue Collars
Frequency Frequency nr
Afro-American 2 2.1 0 0
Caucasian 84 88.4 60 87
Hispanic 4 4.2 6 8.7
Other 3 3.2 1 1.4
Missing 2 2.1 2 2.9
Total 95 100 69 100
TABLE 3.5
SURVEY RESPONDENTS ANALYZED BY EDUCATION
Professionals Blue Collars
Frequency % Frequency i
Up to High
School 4 4.2 46 66.7
Undergraduate 42 44.2 21 30.4
Graduate 46 48.4 0 0
Missing 3 3.2 2 2.9
Total 95 100 69 100


74
TABLE 3.6
SURVEY RESPONDENTS ANALYZED BY AGE
Professionals Blue Collars
Frequency % Frequency %
21 thru 29 7 7.4 1 1.4
30 thru 39 29 30.5 23 33.3
40 thru 49 27 28.4 24 34.8
50 thru 54 10 10.5 5 7.2
55 thru 59 4 4.2 5 7.2
60 thru 64 4 4.2 2 2.9
missing 14 14.7 9 13.0
TOTAL 95 100 69 100
Summary
This chapter started by presenting the
dissertation's research design. This was followed by
theoperationalization for each of the dissertation's two
occupational groups and work variables. The selection
and comparison of the sample to the population was next.
Finally, the data collection instrument procedure and
response rate ended the chapter.


CHAPTER IV
RESEARCH FINDINGS
This chapter is divided into four sections. The
first presents descriptive statistics on the data. The
second and third report the analysis of the data com-
paring the differences between professionals and blue
collars and the effects of the independent variables on
the dependent variables. This chapter ends with a
summary.
Descriptive Statistics on the Variables
The first research question of this dissertation
is exploratory and descriptive in nature. It aims at
finding out what is the level of each variable for the
two groups. Its answers are provided in this section.
The values for each of the variables were
calculated by using the SPSS (Statistical Package for the
Social Sciences) software program. The guidelines for
obtaining each of the variables are:
1. For part one of the instrument (the short form
of the Job Diagnostic survey), its scoring guide was used
(see Appendix D).
2. For part two of the instrument (Quality of
Life Survey by J. S. Kane), the average response to each


76
of the ten statements for each of the five questions was
used. The following variables were measured by part two
of the instrument: (Question 1) Importance of intrinsic
needs; (Question 2) work involvement; (Question 3) actual
job fulfillment of intrinsic needs; (Question 4) satis-
faction with fulfillment of intrinsic needs from life in
general; and (Question 5) satisfaction with job fulfill-
ment of intrinsic needs. These guidelines were obtained
from phone conversations with the developer of the survey
(J. S. Kane) and his previous work (1 977, 1987).
Table 4.1 reports the descriptive statistics on
the variables. To make sense of the raw scores of part
one (the short form of JDS), they are compared to the JDS
normative data for job families. These data were
obtained from 6930 employees who worked on a wide variety
of jobs in 56 organizations throughout the United States.
JDS data were collected from individuals who worked on
several jobs within each job family. The scores of the
respondents who worked on the specific jobs within the
category were averaged and the means and standard
deviations calculated. The means and standard deviations
can be used by practitioners to determine if a target
job's characteristics are out of line with the ap-
propriate norms (Hackman and Oldham, 1980). Since
professionals are the primary concern, only data from


77
their family will be used. As seen from Table 4.1, they
are about average.
TABLE 4.1
DESCRIPTIVE STATISTICS OF THE VARIABLES
Variable Professionals Professionals Blue Collar
National Norm' ,2
Mean S.D Mean S.D'. Mean S.D.
A. INTRINSIC JOB CHARACTERISTICS
Skill Variety 5.8 0.9 5.4 1.0 5.2 1.4
Task Identity 5.2 1.3 5.1 1.2 5.3 1.3
Task Signif. 5.9 1.2 5.6 .95 6.0 1.1
Autonomy 5.5 1.2 5.4 1.0 5.2 1.2
Feedback 5.0 1.1 5.1 1.1 5:3 1.1
MPS 162.6 53.2 154 55 159.2 70.4
B. EXTRINSIC JOB FACTORS
Feedback from
agents 5.0 1.6 4.2 1.4 4.4 1.6
Dealing w/ others 6.0 1.1 5.8 .96 5.6 1.2
Pay satisfaction 4.4 Security 1.6 4.4 1.5 4.0 1.7
satisfaction 5.1 1.5 5.0 1.2 4.1 1.8
Social satisfaction 5.4 Supervisory 0.9 5.5 .68 5.4 4.9 1.0
satisfaction 4.4 1.7 4.9 1.3 1.6
C. INTRINSIC NEEDS FULFILLMENT VARIABLES
Growth Need '
Strength 6.0 0.9 5.6 .6 5.6 1.1
Importance of In- trinsic needs 7.4 Job Fulfillment 1.0 N.A. N.A. 7.4 1.1
of Intrinsic Needs 406.4 174.7 N.A. N.A. 390.0 183.2
Satisfaction with
Job Fulfillment of Needs 6.0 1.5 N.A. N.A. 5.5 2.0
Satisfaction with
Fulfillment of
Intrinsic Needs
From Life 6.9 1.3 N.A. N.A. 6.9 1.3
^A normal score is a score that is not 2 or more
standard deviations (plus or minus) away from the mean.
2Source: R. Hackman and G. Oldham, Work Redesign, 1980.


78
TABLE 4.1 (cont.)
Variable Professionals Professionals Blue Collar
Mean S.D National Norm'2 Mean S.D. Mean S.D.
D. OUTCOMES Job satisfaction 5.0 1.3 4.9 .99 5.4 1.2
Work motivation 6.0 0.8 5.9 .65 5.9 0.8
Growth satisfaction 5.1 1.2 4.9 1.3 4.8 1.6
Work Involvement 58.6 15.5 N.A. N.A. 64.9 16.0
IA normal score is a score that is not 2 or more standard
deviations (plus or minus) away from the mean.
^Source: R. Hackman and G. Oldham, Work Redesign, 1980.
Unfortunately, no such comparison measure is available
for Part 2 (the quality of life survey by Kane). Their
opposite, the blue collars, will serve as a comparison
group.
Hypothesis Testing
Concerning the differences between
the two groups
This section provides the answers to research
question number two, "Are the findings of Cherniss and
Kane generalizable to other governmental settings?" and
hypotheses "Hoi: There is no difference between public
sector professionals and blue collar workers with regard
to the individual and groups of the following variables:


79
intrinsic job characteristics (V1), work motivation (V2),
job satisfaction (V3), work involvement (V4), extrinsic
job factors (V5), intrinsic needs fulfillment (V6),
demographic variables (V7) and growth satisfaction (V8)M,
Hi: The intrinsic job characteristics (V1), work
motivation (V2), job satisfaction (V3), work involvement
(V4), intrinsic needs fulfillment (V6) and growth
satisfaction (V8) of public sector professionals is lower
than that of blue collar workers, H2: The extrinsic job
factors (V5), growth needs strength and education of
public sector professionals are higher than those of blue
collar workers.. A t-test was used to compare the two
groups because the number of respondents was less than
200. Statistically, a t-test is recommended for n below
200. As seen in Table 4.2, only eight variables were
found to have statistically significant differences at
the .05 level. They are:
1. Skill variety: professional jobs had more
skill variety than blue collar job.
2. Dealing with others: professional jobs
required them to deal with others more than blue collar
workers.
3. Job satisfaction: professionals were less
satisfied with their jobs than blue collar workers.
4. Growth need strength: professionals have more
need for growth than blue collar workers.


80
TABLE 4.2
T-TEST FOR COMPARISON BETWEEN THE TWO GROUPS
Variable Professionals Blue Collar 2-tail
Mean S.D Mean S.D. T value prob.
A. INTRINSIC JOB CHARACTERISTICS
Skill Variety 5.8 0.9 5.2 1.4 -3-15 0.002*
Task Identity 5.2 1.3 5.3 1.3 0.65 0.519
Task Significance 5.9 1.2 6.0 1.1 0.55 0.581
Autonomy 5.5 1.2 5.2 1.2 -1.66 0.099
Feedback from job 5.0 1.1 5.3 1.1 1.26 0.208
MPS 162.6 53.2 159.2 70.4 -0.32 0.752
B. EXTRINSIC JOB FACTORS
Feedback from
agents 5.0 1.6 4.4 1.6 1.67 0.098
Dealing w/ others 6.0 1.1 5.6 1.2 -2.58 0.011*
Pay satisfaction 4.4 Security 1.6 4.0 1.7 -1.87 0.063
satisfaction 5.1 1.5 4.1 1.8 -3.67 0.000*
Social satisfaction 5.4 Supervisory 0.9 5.4 1.0 -0.06 0.956
satisfaction 4.4 1.7 4.9 1.6 1.83 0.069
C. INTRINSIC NEEDS FULFILLMENT VARIABLES
Growth Need Strength 6.0 Importance of In- 0.9 5.6 .6 -2.14 0.034*
trinsic needs 7.4 Job Fulfillment 1.0 7.4 1.1 0.01 0.991
of Intrinsic Needs 406.4 174.7 390.0 183.2 -0.58 0.562
Satisfaction with
Job Fulfillment of Needs 6.0 1.5 5.5 2.0 -1.56 0.121
Satisfaction with
Fulfillment of Intrinsic Needs From Life 6.9 1.3 6.9 1.3 -0.11 0.916
D. OUTCOMES Job satisfaction 5.0 Work 1.3 5.4 1.2 1.99 0.048*
motivation 6.0 0.8 5.9 0.8 -0.03 0.977
Growth
satisfaction 5.1 1.2 4.8 1.6 -0.00 0.998
Work Involvement 58.6 15.5 64.9 16.0 2.54 0.012*
^Significant at .05 level.


81
TABLE 4.2 (cont.)
Variable Professionals Blue Collar 2-tail
Mean S.D Mean S.D. T value prob.
E. DEMOGRAPHIC
Sex 37? 0.33 13? 0.48 -3.60 0.000* *
Education 16.5 2.0 12.5 1.3 -14.55 0.000*
Age 42.2 9.2 42.5 7.9 0.18 0.858
Race 9% 0.4 12? 0.4 0.51 0.611
^Significant at .05 level.
5. Security satisfaction: professionals are more
satisfied with their job security than blue collar
workers.
6. Work involvement: professionals were less
involved in their work than blue collar workers.
7. Education: professionals have more formal
education than blue collar workers.
8. Gender: there were more female professionals
than female blue collar workers.
Both alternative hypotheses Hi and H2 are
partially rejected. That is, for H-] intrinsic job
characteristics, work motivation, job satisfaction,
intrinsic needs fulfillment variables were found not to
be lower for PSPs. But, at the same time, work motiva-
tion, also mentioned in the hypothesis, was found to be
*
lower for PSPs. Similarly, in the case of H2, only two
of the extrinsic job factors (security satisfaction and
dealing with others) were found to be higher for PSPs.
All of the other extrinsic job factors were lower for


82
PSPs. But growth needs strength and education of PSPs,
as expected, were higher.
The answer to the second research question, nAre
the findings of Cherniss and Kane (1987) generalizable to
other governmental settings?, is that only growth need
strength, work motivation and work involvement are found
to be similar to what they found.
In a comparison with Cherniss and Kanes findings
(reported in Table 2.1), the following is revealed:
For skill variety and dealing with others, the
opposite was found in this research. Cherniss and Kane
reported that public sector professionals' jobs had less
skill variety and required them to deal with others less
than blue collar worker jobs.
For task identity, task significance, autonomy,
feedback from the job, feedback from agents and work
motivation, Cherniss and Kane reported lower values for
professionals compared to blue collar workers. This
research could not find any statistical difference among
the two groups with respect to these variables.
Regarding job satisfaction, Cherniss and Kane
reported no differences between the two groups while here
it was found that professional's job satisfaction is
slightly lower than blue collar workers.
Since Cherniss and Kane's (1987)work did not
include any demographic variables or the rest of the


83
extrinsic job characteristics, no comparison can be made
regarding them.
The only findings of their work that are vali-
dated here are:
First, work involvement of professionals was
found to be, in both studies, lower than that of blue
collars.
Second, concerning growth need strength, both
studies found professionals to be higher than blue
collars in this variable.
Concerning the relationships between
the variables
In this section, the last research questions and
hypotheses are discussed. These are:
Questions: 3. "What are the factors that affect
the work motivation, job satisfaction and
work involvement of public sector profes-
sionals?"
4. "is there any relation between work
motivation, job satisfaction and work
involvement?"
5. "Are the factors that affect public
sector professionals' work motivation, job
satisfaction and work involvement different
from those that affect blue collars' work


motivation, job satisfaction and work
involvement?"
Related null
hypotheses:
"Ho2s The intrinsic job characteristics
of public sector professionals (V1) has no
effect on the dependent variables [work
motivation (V2), job satisfaction (V3) and
work involvement (V1})]."
"H03: None of the minor independent
variables [extrinsic job factors (V5),
intrinsic needs fulfillment (V6), demo-
graphic variables (V7) and growth satisfac-
tion (V8)] of public sector professionals
has any effect on the dependent variables
[work motivation (V2), job satisfaction (V3)
and work involvement (V4)]."
"H04: The dependent variables [work
motivation (V2), job satisfaction (V3) and
work involvement (V4)] have no effect on
each other."
"H05: The factors that effect the
dependent variables [work motivation (V2),
job satisfaction (V3), and work involvement
(V4)] are the same for both groups."


85
Related alternative
hypotheses:
H3: Intrinsic job characteristics (V1)
of public sector professional jobs has an
effect on the PSP dependent variables of
work motivation (V2), job satisfaction (V3)
and work involvement (V4) which is greater
than the effects of extrinsic job factors
(V5), intrinsic needs fulfillment variables
(V6), demographic factors (V7) and growth
satisfaction (V8) on the mentioned dependent
variables."
Hi]: Work motivation (V2) has an
effect on job satisfaction (V3) and work
involvement (V4).
"H5: The factors that effect the work
motivation (V2), job satisfaction (V3) and
work involvement (V4) of public sector
professionals are different from those that
effect the same variables for blue collar
workers. (Specifically, PSPs work motiva-
tion (V2), job satisfaction (V3) and Work
involvement (V4) will be affected by
intrinsic needs fulfillment variables (V6)
more than blue collar workers' variables.
PSPs work motivation (V2), job satisfaction


86
(V3) and work involvement (V1!) will be
affected by extrinsic job variables (V5)
less than blue collar workers.)
Cherniss and Kanes use of t-tests help only in a
comparison of the two groups. Since a key goal of this
dissertation is the exploration of the relationship
between each of the dependent variables, and a set of
independent variables, multiple regression turned out to
be the appropriate statistical tool for this data
analysis. Actually, in order to expand on Cherniss and
Kanes work, and to answer the above questions, multiple
regression is required.
However, before beginning the multiple regres-
sion, protection against multicollinearity was needed.
Multicollinearity is defined as a condition of high or
near perfect correlation among the independent variables
in a multiple regression equation. If this is the case,
the variables, which are either perfectly or 50% or 15%
predictable from the other variables on the independent
side of the equation, have to be eliminated (Bohrnstedt
and Knoke, 1982).
Since all of the dissertation's variables are
obtained by two instruments, which have been used in
various published researches wherein there was no report
of multicollinearity, the researcher felt protected
against multicollinearity. Nevertheless, for surety, a


87
test for multicollinearity was done for the following
variables: MPS (the index of intrinsic job characteris-
tics), work motivation, job satisfaction, work involve-
ment, growth need strength, race, sex, education and age.
These variables were chosen in particular for the
following reasons:
MPS, work motivation, job satisfaction and work
involvement were chosen because they are the key vari-
ables of the dissertation.
Growth need strength is a higher set of intrinsic
needs which is feared to have multicollinearity with work
involvement which reflects fulfillment of intrinsic needs
also.
Race, sex, education and age are contingent
special variables which can be a reflection of each
population studied and cannot be generalized in advance.
The test for multicollinearity (suggested by
Bohrnstedt and Knoke, 1982) is a matrix of intercorrela-
tions among the variables and the results are reported in
Table 4.3. According to Bohrnstedt and Knoke (1982), if
correlations of 0.8 or higher were observed, there is a
risk of multicollinearity. As can be seen in Table 4.3,
the highest correlations are 0.45 between MPS and job
satisfaction and 0.44 between job satisfaction and work
motivation. This is normal. As shown in the literature
review, these variables are associated with each other.