U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

Exploring Antecedents of Five Types of Organizational Commitment Among Correctional Staff: It Matters What You Measure

NCJ Number
Criminal Justice Policy Review Volume: 19 Issue: 4 Dated: December 2008 Pages: 466-490
Eric G. Lambert; Nancy L. Hogan; Shanhe Jiang
Date Published
December 2008
25 pages
This study explored how the work environment affects the various forms of organizational commitment.
Results indicate that the effects of the major forms of organizational structure (input into decisionmaking, job autonomy, promotional opportunities, institutional communication, and organization fairness) and job stress varied considerably depending on which form of organizational commitment was measured. The findings can be strongly influenced by the type and level of organization commitment measured. The organization structure and job stress variables had the greatest impact on affective commitment and agency commitment, had a moderate impact on institutional commitment and moral commitments, and had the least impact on continuance commitment. Organizational structure factors may influence affective commitment depending on the degree of success the organization has in implementing these factors, which determines whether they meet the psychological and emotional needs of the worker. Organizational factors that indicate the employee is valued and respected seem especially important in shaping commitment. Additionally job stress may be linked to affective commitment if workers blame the organization for the stress, especially when the stress continues for an extended period of time. Like job stress, affective commitment is a psychological state; employees find it more difficult to bond with something that causes them psychologically discomfort and pain. Data were collected from 272 staff at a high-security prison in the Midwest. Tables, notes, references