טכניון מכון טכנולוגי לישראל
הטכניון מכון טכנולוגי לישראל - בית הספר ללימודי מוסמכים  
M.Sc Thesis
M.Sc StudentKeren Vered Mor
SubjectTrust as a Mediator of the Relationship between
Organizational Justice and Work Behaviors in a
Cross-Cultural Context
DepartmentDepartment of Industrial Engineering and Management
Supervisor Dr. Tzafrir Shay


Abstract

Competitiveness in the global economy increasingly requires companies to employ a multicultural workforce. An important question is whether theoretical models and managerial practices may be generalized and applied abroad. Based largely on social exchange theory, this study examines potential cross-cultural differences in the behavior of organizational justice and trust as predictors of work attitudes and behaviors.

Survey data from 205 employees, working in 62 teams, was collected in three subsidiaries (Israel, the UK and Hungary) of a pharmaceutical company. Specifically, the hypothesized model included organizational justice dimensions as the independent variables; trust in two foci (the organization and the employee's direct supervisor) as mediators; and turnover intentions and organizational citizenship behavior (termed OCB) as outcomes. Although previous studies have found support for relationships between these variables, this model has not been examined before in one organization in a cross-cultural context.

The relationships among the research variables were analyzed using mixed models for the organization as a whole and for each country separately. The hypothesized model received only partial support from the collected data. In the aggregate sample, only two justice dimensions - distributive & procedural justice and informational justice - were found to be positively related with trust in the organization, while both interpersonal justice and informational justice were found to be positively related with trust in one’s supervisor. In addition, both trust in the organization and trust in one’s supervisor were found to be negatively related with turnover intentions. However, neither trust in the organization nor trust in one’s supervisor was found to be related with OCB. Cross-cultural differences were found in the levels of three of the research variables: trust in the organization, turnover intentions, and OCB.

The finding that organizational justice is an important predictor of trust in all three samples indicates the importance of these two concepts in organizational life in different countries. The results also suggest that the different dimensions of organizational justice and the two trust foci may not operate identically in relation to turnover intentions and OCB in different settings. Specifically, the findings suggest that different kinds of exchange - i.e., economic versus social - with different kinds of partners - i.e., the organization versus the direct supervisor - may predominate in different contexts.

More methodological considerations, theoretical and practical implications are discussed.