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Organizational Change: Effects of Fairness Perceptions on Cynicism

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Abstract

Organizational activities perceived by a workforce as being unfair are believed by organizational researchers to contribute to workforce cynicism. The present study examines this previously untested proposition. The results from this study suggest that fairness perceptions predict cynicism, but the strongest predictor of cynicism is organizational trust. These conclusions were derived by examining the relationship between five measures of fairness (fairness of awards, award system, work distribution, work level, and supervisors), four workplace characteristic variables (episodic stress, role overload, organizational trust, and job satisfaction), and two measures of cynicism (cynicism about change and coworker cynicism). The results show that the strongest predictor of both measures of cynicism is organizational trust. In addition, the fairness perceptions play a limited role in predicting perceptions of cynicism. Future research should better define the conceptual and empirical distinctions between workforce cynicism, organizational trust, and workplace fairness.
... However, little empirical work has focused on clarifying such distinctions. One such issue in need of clarification is the distinction between cynicism and trust; more specifically, cynicism and distrust (Thompson et al., 1999). ...
... Workplace cynicism is an emerging topic in the organizational science literature (Andersson, 1996; Andersson & Bateman, 1997; Bateman, Sakano, & Fujita; 1992; Dean, Brandes, & Dharwadkar, 1998; Kanter & Mirvis, 1989; Thompson, Bailey, Joseph, Worley, & Williams, 1999). Outside of some specific employee groups, such as police officers and social workers, cynicism research in the broader organiza­ tional context is in the " introduction and elabora­ tion " stage (Reichers & Schneider, 1990, p. 6). ...
... However, little empirical work has focused on clarifying such distinctions. One such issue in need of clarification is the distinction between cynicism and trust; more specifically, cynicism and distrust (Thompson et al., 1999). Several writers have indicated that organizational cynicism is conceptually distinct from organizational trust. ...
... Various factors are attributed toward the development of organizational cynicism among employees. For example, it can be an outcome of employees' emotional responses [24], perceptions of psychological contract violation [25], wrong manifestation [26], lack of trust [27], biased employment decision-making process [28], organizational change [29,30], perceived injustice [31], negative feelings, such as disappointment from work and exhaustion [32], poor work environment [33], and overestimated executive compensation [22]. A psychological contract breach affects the employee's belief and ultimately causes changes in their attitude and behavior [2,4], inducing organizational cynicism [15,16,34]. ...
... The prior research believes that [30], under the communist system in China, the trade union plays a dual function, representing the overall interests of the state (state-oriented) and workers (labororiented). Trade unions in China have a dual identity regarding the nation and the worker community [31]. It is a tool for the state and workers' organizations. ...
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From the social exchange theory, this study examines the relationship between psychological contract breach, organizational cynicism, and union commitment, as well as the interaction effect of perceived union dual identity on the relationship between organizational cynicism and union commitment. We argue that contract breach has a positive impact on union commitment, and this relationship is mediated by organizational cynicism. Moreover, we suggest that the perceived union dual identity moderates the relationship between the two. To examine this, we sampled 371 employees of Chinese non-state-owned firms in 2019. The results show that, in the Chinese context, the psychological contract breach has a positive impact on organizational cynicism and union commitment. This relationship is weaker when the perceived union identity (state-oriented) is higher; it is stronger when the perceived union identity (labor-oriented) is higher.
... Siniklere göre; insan doğasının temelinde sahtekârlık ve bencillik vardır, örgüt uygulamaları doğruluk, dürüstlük ve samimiyet ilkelerinden yoksundur, örgütler, yöneticiler ve örgütte çalışanlar kendi çıkarlarına hizmet eder, örgütler ahlaki değerleri hiçe sayarlar, örgütsel değişim liderlerini yeteneksiz ve tembeldir, gelecekteki değişim çabalarının başarılı olma olasılığı (kötümserlik) çok zayıftır ve işle ilgili problemler kişisel kontrolün ötesindeki faktörler nedeniyle çözülemeyecektir (Johnson ve O'Leary-Kelly, 2003;Kanter andMirvis, 1989, Reichers, Wanous ve Austin, 1997;Thompson, Joseph, Bailey, Worley ve Williams, 2000;Thompson, Bailey, Joseph, Worley and Williams, 1999;Valentine ve Elias, 2005;Vance, Brooks ve Tesluk, 1996;Wanous, Reichers ve Austin, 2000;Wanous, Reichers ve Austin,1994). Örgütlerine yönelik öfke ve küçümseme hissedebilen sinikler, kendi örgütlerini düşündüklerinde üzüntü, nefret ve hatta utanç duyabilirler; örgütlerine ve başkalarına karşı güvensizlik içinde olabilirler (Abraham, 2000;Andersson ve Beteman, 1997;Brandes, 1997;Stanley, Meyer ve Topolnytsky, 2005). ...
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z: Bu çalışmada, öğretmen görüşlerine göre okul müdürlerinin iletişim becerileri ile öğretmenlerin genel ve örgütsel sinizm tutumları arasındaki ilişkilerin incelenmesi amaçlanmıştır. Araştırmanın evrenini, 2014–2015 eğitim öğretim yılı, Giresun il merkezinde MEB'e bağlı okullarda çalışan 1206 öğretmen oluşturmaktadır. Araştırmada,Wiemann (1977) tarafından geliştirilen " İletişim Becerileri Ölçeği " , Brandes, Dharwadkar ve Dean (1999) tarafından geliştirilen " Örgütsel Sinizm Ölçeği " ve Wrightsman (1992) tarafından geliştirilen " Genel Sinizm Ölçeği " kullanılmıştır. Verilerin analizinde yüzde, frekans, aritmetik ortalama, standart sapma, korelasyon ve regresyon analizleri kullanılmıştır. Öğretmen görüşlerine göre okul müdürlerin iletişim becerileri, " iyi " düzeydedir. Araştırma sonuçlarına göre, öğretmenlerin genel sinizm düzeyleri " kararsızım " aralığında orta düzeyde bulunmuştur. Öğretmenlerin duyuşsal, davranışsal boyut ve alt boyutlar toplamında örgütsel sinizm düzeyleri " katılmıyorum " aralığında düşük düzeyde, bilişsel boyutta ise " kısmen katılıyorum " aralığında orta düzeyde bulunmuştur. Öğretmenlerin genel sinizm tutumları ile örgütsel sinizm tutumları arasında düşük düzeyde potizif yönde bir ilişki bulunmaktadır. Ayrıca; öğretmenlerin okul müdürlerinin iletişim becerilerine ilişkin görüşleri ile örgütsel sinizm tutumları arasında orta düzeyde negatif yönde anlamlı bir ilişki olduğu tespit edilmiştir. Öğretmenlerin okul müdürlerinin iletişim becerilerine ilişkin görüşleri ile öğretmenlerin genel sinizm tutumları arasında düşük düzeyde negatif yönde anlamlı bir ilişki bulunmaktadır. Anahtar Kelimeler: Okul müdürü, iletişim, öğretmen, örgütsel sinizm. Abstract: : In this study, it is aimed to investigate the relationship between school principals' communication skills and teachers' general and organizational cynicism attitudes according to perceptions of teachers. The population of the research consisted of 1206 teachers working at schools under the Ministry of Education in Giresun Province at 2014–2015 academic year. " Communication Skills Scale " developed by Wiemann (1977), " Organizational Cynicism Scale " developed by Brandes, Dharwadkar and Dean (1999), and " General Cynicism Scale " developed by Wrightsman (1992) were used in the study. Percentage, frequency, arithmetic mean, standard deviation, correlation analysis, regression analysis were used for data analysis. According to teachers' views, communication skills of school principals are " good " level. According to research results; the level of general cynicism of teachers was found " undecided " in the moderate range. Organizational cynicism levels of teachers at affective, behavioral dimensions and the total of all sub-dimensions were found " disagree " in low range, and at the cognitive dimension it was found " somewhat agree " at moderate level. There is a positive relationship at low level between teachers' attitudes of general cynicism and organizational cynicism. In addition, it has been found that there is a significant negative relationship at moderate level between teachers' views related to school principals' communication skills and teachers' attitudes of organizational cynicism. There is a significant negative relationship at low level between teachers' views related to school principals' communication skills and teachers' attitudes of general cynicism. In addition, the communication skills of school principals significantly predict teachers' attitudes of general and organizational cynicism.
... Various factors are attributed toward development of organizational cynicism among employees, e.g. it can be an outcome of employee's emotional responses Cole et al. (2006) perceptions of psychological contract violation (Pugh et al., 2003) fake manifestation (Helm, 2004) lack of trust in management (Kim et al., 2009) biased employment decisions (Davis and Gardner, 2004) organizational change (Avey et al., 2008;Clarke, 1999) perceived injustice (Thompson et al., 1999;FitzGerald, 2002) disappointment from work and exhaustion (Cartwright and Holmes, 2006) poor work environment (Simbula and Guglielmi, 2010) and high executive compensation (Andersson and Bateman, 1997). Breach of Psychological contract affects the employee's belief and ultimately causes changes in attitude and behavior (Robinson, 1996;Morrison and Robinson, 1997) and induces organizational cynicism (Andersson, 1996;Johnson and O'Leary-Kelly, 2003;Dean et al., 1998). ...
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This study examines the relationship between breach of psychological contract, organizational cynicism and union commitment among hospitality sector personnel in Pakistan. Data were collected from 279 unionized employees working in different hotels and also from aviation hospitality staff. Findings indicate that breach of psychological contract results in union commitment among hospitality sector employees and this relationship is mediated by organizational cynicism. Contrary to expectation collectivism does not moderate the relationship between organizational cynicism and union commitment. Implications and future research directions for hospitality management are also discussed.
... The latter is a belief in the honesty and reliability of others. In this sense, trust represents an expectation about a future state and, when violated, may be a strong predictor of cynicism (Thompson, Bailey, Joseph, Worley, & Williams, 1999). ...
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Prompted by a seemingly growing level of cynicism within academia, on the part of Academy of Management members in particular, I developed a new measure of cynicism and investigated a previously untested structural model in which cynicism is related in sequence to organizational identification, affective commitment, job satisfaction, and turnover intentions. Data were obtained from 379 faculty members who were participants in the 2004 Academy of Management Meeting. Structural equation modeling was used to represent and test the hypothesized latent structure of the respective constructs, as well as the proposed structural paths between constructs. Support was found for the convergent and discriminant validity of the constructs underlying the structural model and for the network of proposed relationships. The implications of these findings for management education and learning, as well as avenues for future research, are discussed.
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The purpose of this study is to explore disturbing consequence of perception of milder kind of interpersonal maltreatments: workplace incivility which is less reported but wildly experienced at the workplace. This study investigates the relationship of observation of workplace incivility with organizational cynicism that leads toward turnover intentions. Hierarchical regression analysis with its four steps/conditions proposed by Baron and Kenney (J Personal Soc Psychol 51(6):1173, 1986) is applied to prove the workplace incivility and turnover intentions. Conclusions of the study revealed that there is a positive relationship between turnover intentions and workplace incivility while organizational cynicism plays a mediational role in this relationship.
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Cynicism about organizational change is often considered an important factor that influences employee acceptance of change initiatives. However, cynicism has been compared with several similar constructs with little conceptual or empirical differentiation. To provide a deeper understanding of change cynicism, we compare and contrast it with similar—yet distinct—constructs: organizational trust, resistance to change, and organizational cynicism. We begin with a narrative review of the conceptual distinctions and similarities among these constructs, followed by meta-analysis of the nomological network of change cynicism. In addition, we compare the nomological network of change cynicism with those of organizational cynicism and trust. We discuss the need for a refined conceptualization of cynicism and suggest new areas for future research.
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Cynicism about organizational change is often considered an important factor that influences employee acceptance of change initiatives. To provide a deeper understanding of change cynicism, we conducted a meta-analysis examining the extent to which individual differences (e.g., tolerance for ambiguity) and workplace experiences (e.g., fairness) predict change cynicism. We also examine the relationships of cynicism to employee attitudes (e.g., organizational commitment), motivation (e.g., employee engagement) and various forms of performance (e.g., organizational citizenship behaviors). For comparative purposes, we also explored the meta-analytic relationship between change cynicism and trust. Traditionally considered opposite ends of a continuum, more current thought suggests the two are separate. We empirically examined whether, in fact, the two are distinct constructs.
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ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Niederhoffer developed a scale in the early 1960s to measure the level of cynicism among police officials. Niederhoffer concluded that cynicism is prevalent among police officials and that professionalization of the police occupation is the root cause of cynicism. The Niederhoffer scale was subjected over years to a number of methodological tests. It was found to be multi-dimensional whilst some authors found that the scale is invalid. In this study, we confirmed these findings to some extent in that it was found that the Niederhoffer’s scale is indeed multi-dimensional and that it has a low internal reliability. This study also replicated some of Niederhoffer’s substantive hypotheses which were supported by our empirical data. The various dimensions of scale were also correlated with an Attitude Towards Organizational Change scale. It was found that cynicism is related most strongly to both fear of change and acceptance of change. AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: In die vroeë 1960’s het Niederhoffer ‘n skaal ontwikkel om die vlakke van sinisme onder polisie-amptenare te meet. Niederhoffer vind sinisme onder polisie-amptenare en skryf dit toe aan die professionalisering van dié beroep. Niederhoffer se skaal is geruime tyd al aan ‘n aantal metodologiese toetse onderwerp en die bevinding was dat dit meerdimensioneel is, hoewel sommige outeurs dit ongeldig bevind het. In hierdie studie is ook bevind dat Niederhoffer se skaal meerdimensioneel is met ‘n lae interne betroubaarheidstelling. Die studie herhaal sommige van Niederhoffer se hipoteses en bied steun aan die meeste van sy hipoteses. Die verskeie skaaldimensies is met die Houding Teenoor Organisatoriese Verandering-skaal in verband gebring en die bevinding is dat sinisme aan beide vrees vir verandering en aanvaarding van verandering verwant is. Thesis (MPhil (Sociology and Social Anthropology))--University of Stellenbosch, 2010.
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