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Person-supervisor Fit Relationship with Motivation and Job Satisfaction

Info: 9452 words (38 pages) Dissertation
Published: 10th Dec 2019

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Tagged: EmploymentTeamwork

Chapter 2: Literature Review

Introduction to the Chapter and Background to the Problem

Employees want to fit well within their work environment, seeking to work for organizations, groups, and supervisors that are congruent with the employee’s values, and leaving workplaces that are not a good fit (Van Vianen et al., 2011). Person-environment fit is a measure of the level of congruence between an employee and his or her work environment (Chuang, Hsu, Wang, & Judge, 2015; Kristof-Brown & Guay, 2011). The four dimensions of person-environment fit are person-organization fit, person-job fit, person-group fit, and person-supervisor fit (Kristof-Brown & Billsberry, 2013). Person-supervisor fit is the least studied of these four dimensions (Ahmad, 2010), and the field lacks studies which have attempted to relate employee perception of person-supervisor fit with motivation and job satisfaction in a single study (Ahmad, 2010; Kristof-Brown et al., 2005; Van Vianen et al., 2011). The goal of this study was to expand the limited amount of research on person-supervisor fit and its relationships with motivation and job satisfaction by examining whether high or low degrees of person-supervisor fit correlated with employee motivation (extrinsic and intrinsic) and job satisfaction. This study was conducted using a self-report survey which measured participants’ perceived degree of person-supervisor fit, extrinsic motivation, intrinsic motivation, and job satisfaction.

Background to the Problem

Previous research established a relationship between person-organization fit and motivation in the workplace (Kim et al., 2013; Kim, 2012), as well as person-organization fit and job satisfaction (Gabriel et al., 2013; Liu et al., 2010; Rehfuss et al., 2012; Gutierrez, Candela, & Carver, 2012); however, it could not be assumed that a measured degree of person-organization fit was representative of an employee’s perceived degree of person-supervisor fit. Moreover, more research on person-supervisor fit was needed to balance out the amount of research on the other three dimensions of person-environment fit and to increase the body of knowledge about person-supervisor fit. In a meta-analysis of studies on the four dimensions of person-environment fit, only 17 usable studies on person-supervisor fit were found, while 20, 62, and 110 usable studies were found on person-group fit, person-job fit, and person-organization fit, respectively (Kristof-Brown et al., 2005).

Person-organization fit and person-supervisor fit both involve the perceived match between the employee’s values, the values of the supervisor, and the values of the organization; as a result, these constructs are often studied together (Graf, Van Quaquebeke, & Van Dick, 2011; Posner, 2010; Van Vianen et al., 2011). Research on person-organization fit has focused on the compatibility between individuals and organizations, underscoring value congruence as a significant predictor of person-organization fit (Boon et al., 2011; Brunet, Gunnell, Gaudreau, & Sabiston, 2015; Van Vuuren, Veldkamp, De Jong, & Seydel, 2007), while research on person-supervisor fit has given rise to studies on leader-follower value congruence (Hayibor et al., 2011; Mullins & Syam, 2014; Zhang et al., 2012), manager-employee goal congruence (Kim & Kim, 2013; Schaffer, 2013), and supervisor-subordinate personality similarity (Holliday et al., 2010; Oren et al., 2012). Person-organization fit and person-supervisor fit have been linked to employee commitment (Maden & Kabasakal, 2014; Van Vianen et al., 2011), employee perception of organizational goals (Sun et al., 2014), and job performance (Oh et al., 2014).

A great deal of research on motivation (extrinsic and intrinsic) and job satisfaction exists in the literature (Bang et al., 2013; Diefendorff & Chandler, 2011; Parker, 2014; Schleicher et al., 2011; Warr, 2011; Yurtseven & Halici, 2012). Researchers have studied factors such as job stress, turnover, organizational commitment, attitudes, pay satisfaction, productivity, and job performance to determine what influences extrinsic motivation, intrinsic motivation, and job satisfaction, and what relationships these employee outcomes have with other factors. Person-organization fit and person-supervisor fit are no exception. Studies have investigated relationships between person-organization fit and motivation (Kim et al., 2013; Kim, 2012), person-organization fit and job satisfaction (Gabriel et al., 2013; Liu et al., 2010; Rehfuss et al., 2012; Gutierrez et al., 2012), person-supervisor fit and motivation (Hoffman, Bynum, Piccolo, & Sutton, 2011; Peters, Ryan, Haslam & Fernandes, 2012; Sun et al., 2014), and person-supervisor fit and job satisfaction (Kim & Kim, 2013; Larson, Norman, Hughes, & Avey, 2013; Oh et al., 2014). Employees who feel that they fit well within their organization show higher levels of job satisfaction, are more committed to remaining with the organization, and demonstrate higher work performance (Loi, Chan, & Lam, 2013; Van Vianen et al., 2011; Zhang, Deng, & Wang, 2014). Similarly, employees who feel that their values are similar to those of their supervisor show higher levels of satisfaction with their job and with the general work environment (Kristof-Brown et al., 2005). However, none of these studies explored the relationship between all of these variables within a single study, or whether extrinsic motivation, intrinsic motivation, or job satisfaction was influenced by employee perception of person-supervisor fit.

The following literature review suggests the contribution person-supervisor fit research could make to the current understanding of person-environment fit. This review begins with an examination of the broader topic of person-organization fit and its relationships with value congruence and person-supervisor fit. The “Person-Organization Fit” section is organized into the subsections “Person-Organization Fit and Value Congruence” and “Person-Organization Fit and Person-Supervisor Fit.” Following this exploration of person-organization fit research, the review continues to examine the narrower, less-researched topic of person-supervisor fit, including its relationships with value congruence and leader-member exchange. The “Person-Supervisor Fit” section is organized into the subsections “Person-Supervisor Fit and Value Congruence” and “Person-Supervisor Fit and Leader-Member Exchange.” The review then examines the research relating motivation to person-organization fit, person-supervisor fit, and job satisfaction. The “Motivation” section is organized into the subsections “Motivation and Person-Organization Fit,” “Motivation and Person-Supervisor Fit,” and “Motivation and Job Satisfaction.” The review concludes with an overview of the research relating job satisfaction to person-organization fit, person-supervisor fit, and value congruence. The “Job Satisfaction” section is organized into the subsections “Job Satisfaction and Person-Organization Fit,” “Job Satisfaction and Person-Supervisor Fit,” and “Job Satisfaction and Value Congruence.”

This literature review surveys scholarly articles, books, and sources such as dissertations and conference proceedings relevant to issues, research, and theory in the area of person-supervisor fit and its relationships with motivation and job satisfaction. Sources were evaluated to determine which material significantly contributed to the understanding of person-supervisor fit, and how it was related to motivation and job satisfaction, to justify why these topics should be studied together.

Theoretical Foundations and/or Conceptual Framework

One of the theories that provided the foundation for this study is the theory of supplementary fit (Muchinsky & Monahan, 1987; Montoya & Horton, 2013). Supplementary fit is a type of person-environment congruence that is defined by the degree of fit between an individual, such as an employee, and an environment, which Muchinsky and Monahan (1987) define as “a group of people who comprise an environment” (p. 269). Supplementary fit is a form of person-environment congruence that treats people, such as a work group or a colleague, as the environment, so that congruence can be conceptualized as the degree of fit between an individual employee and another individual or group of individuals (Muchinsky & Monahan, 1987; Guan, Deng, Risavy, Bond, & Li, 2011). The degree of fit is indicated by the amount of similarity the employee perceives between his or her own values and the values of another individual or group of individuals (Van Vianen et al., 2011).

The supplementary fit literature generally supports the existence of positive relationships between person-environment fit and job satisfaction and, to a lesser extent, person-environment fit and intrinsic motivation. Researchers have drawn from the person-environment fit paradigm to predict work outcomes, including turnover intention, stress and burnout, and job satisfaction (Cable & Edwards, 2004). The results of this research indicate that an employee would find it comfortable to work in an organization where the values that are most important to the employee are also important to the organization, colleagues, or the supervisor (Spanjol, Tam, & Tam, 2015), thus achieving value congruence. Value congruence is the most common way that past research has examined supplementary fit (Biswas & Bhatnagar, 2013; Burns, Kotrba, & Denison, 2013; Oh et al., 2014). Value incongruence, on the other hand, occurs when the values that are most important to the employee are not important to the organization, colleagues, or the supervisor. Research has suggested that value incongruence may lead to decreased motivation, increased turnover intention, and job dissatisfaction (Boon & Biron, 2016; Cable & Edwards, 2004; Spanjol et al., 2015). Since value congruence and incongruence have been utilized to study supplementary fit, it was appropriate to draw from the theory of supplementary fit to answer the research questions of this study. Past research has indicated that person-supervisor fit has been viewed as a type of supplementary fit (Cable & Edwards, 2004; Latham, 2011; Muchinsky & Monahan, 1987), in addition to being a dimension of person-environment fit (Kristof-Brown et al., 2005). Therefore, value congruence measured by person-supervisor fit was expected to display positive relationships with motivation and job satisfaction, based on results from previous studies of other dimensions of person-environment fit (e.g., Biswas & Bhatnagar, 2013; Burns et al., 2013; Kristof-Brown et al., 2005).

The similarity/attraction theory also supports the concept of person-supervisor fit (Byrne et al., 1967; Montoya & Horton, 2013). According to the similarity/attraction theory, an individual experiences increased attraction to and trust in another individual if they perceive similarities in observed behavior, personality characteristics, attitudes, or emotional responses (Byrne et al., 1967; Montoya & Horton, 2013). When applied to person-supervisor fit, the similarity/attraction theory is demonstrated by an employee’s increased likelihood of perceiving a high degree of fit with their supervisor if he or she believes his or her supervisor displays similar values or attitudes in the workplace (Cable & Edwards, 2004; Latham, 2011).

The similarity/attraction literature provides support for the relationship of value congruence with job satisfaction and, to a lesser extent, value congruence with motivation. The similarity/attraction theory has been studied in the person-environment fit literature by examining similarities between individuals and organizations, jobs, and groups, and studying the factors that attract individuals to organizations, jobs, or groups (e.g., Boon & Biron, 2016; Kristof-Brown et al., 2014; Van Hoye & Turban, 2015). A great deal of research has focused on similarity and attraction between individuals and organizations, jobs, and groups, but considerably less research has focused on similarity and attraction between individuals and supervisors (e.g., Chen, Wen, Peng, & Liu, 2016; Kim & Kim, 2013). This study sought to extend support for the similarity/attraction theory in the person-environment fit literature by adding to the relatively small number of studies in which the similarity/attraction theory is used to support and predict person-supervisor fit.

Review of the Literature

Person-organization fit. Much of the previous research has focused on the broader topic of person-organization fit (Ahmad & Veerapandian, 2012; DaSilva, Hutcheson, & Wahl, 2010; Deng, Guan, Bond, Zhang, & Hu, 2011; Giauque, Resenterra, & Siggen, 2014; Gould-Williams, Mostafa, & Bottomley, 2013; Guan et al., 2011; Kim et al., 2013; Ruiz-Palomino, Martínez-Cañas, & Fontrodona, 2013; Yan, Zou, & Zhu, 2013). Person-organization fit has been shown to significantly affect employee outcomes such as job performance, turnover, and working attitude, and has also been linked to employee retention and recruiter selection decisions (Farzaneh, Dehghanpour Farashah, & Kazemi, 2014; Kristof-Brown et al., 2005; Liu et al., 2010; Sekiguchi & Huber, 2011). In order for person-organization fit to be achieved, there must be similarity, compatibility, and consistency between the employee and the organization in terms of values, personality, and work environment (Spanjol et al., 2015; Inceoglu & Warr, 2011; Sousa & Porto, 2015). Person-organization fit has been found to be the most influential factor on turnover through its influence on job satisfaction, as it first affects the employee’s working attitude, then the employee’s intention to terminate employment with the organization (Kristof-Brown & Billsberry, 2013; Liu et al., 2010; Rehfuss et al., 2012). Person-organization fit affects job satisfaction positively; the better the degree of fit between the employee and the organization, the happier he or she is with his or her job (Liu, Tang, & Yang, 2013). Conversely, person-organization fit affects turnover negatively; the poorer the degree of fit between the employee and the organization, the less likely the employee is to remain with the organization (Kristof-Brown et al., 2005; Warr & Inceoglu, 2012).

Person-organization fit and value congruence.The research on person-organization fit and value congruence shows that, in general, employees that perceive a high level of alignment with organizational values are more likely to perceive a high level of person-organization fit (Boon et al., 2011; Posner, 2010; Van Vuuren et al., 2007). Such positive perceptions of person-organization fit are predicted to lead to positive employee outcomes, such as greater job satisfaction, commitment to the organization, increased morale, and motivation for career success (Boon et al., 2011; Posner, 2010). Boon et al. (2011), in their study of employee perceptions of human resources (HR) practices in organizations, found that HR practices affect employee perceptions of person-organization fit, suggesting that employees who report a high level of fit with the organization’s values may have more positive perceptions of HR practices and may also report higher levels of job satisfaction. Furthermore, Posner (2010) reported that managers whose values were highly congruent with the organization’s values felt that the organization made its values clearly known. These managers, in a study of the effect of personal value congruence and organizational value clarity on positive work outcomes, expressed higher levels of commitment, motivation, and personal work success than managers whose values were not highly congruent with the organization’s values (Posner, 2010). These findings imply that organizations that make significant efforts to align individual employee values with organizational values will create a workplace of people who are committed, motivated, ethical, and efficient. Additionally, Van Vuuren et al. (2007) investigated the influence of organizational and personal value congruence upon employees’ actual and perceived person-organization fit and found that human relations values had the strongest influence on employee perceptions of person-organization fit, meaning that employees who felt that their organization stressed the importance of information-sharing, participative decision making, ethics, and morale perceived a better fit with their organization and a high level of congruence between their values and the organization’s values.

Methodology and instrumentation.In two of the three studies of person-organization fit and value congruence described in the previous section, a three-item person-organization fit scale developed by Cable and DeRue (2002) was used to measure employee perceptions of person-organization fit (e.g., Boon et al., 2011; Van Vuuren et al., 2007), while the third study measured personal value congruence with a two-item scale of shared values (Posner, 2010). Additionally, actual person-organization fit was measured with the Competing Values Framework scale (Kalliath, Bluedorn, & Gillespie, 1999), while direct person-organization fit was measured with a two-item scale developed by Cooper-Thomas, Van Vianen, and Anderson (2004). The distinction between actual and perceived person-organization fit is that actual person-organization fit is measured by obtaining fit ratings from both the employee and the organization, then comparing the ratings to calculate an objective fit score, while perceived person-organization fit is measured by obtaining fit ratings from either the employee or the organization and calculating a subjective fit score (Gardner, Reithel, Cogliser, Walumbwa, & Foley, 2012; Newton, Teo, Pick, Yeung, & Salamonson, 2013). Cable and DeRue’s (2002) three-item person-organization fit scale was adapted by Kim and Kim (2013) to measure perceived person-supervisor fit. The studies of person-organization fit and value congruence described in the previous section support the use of Cable and DeRue’s (2002) scale to measure person-organization fit; therefore, it was concluded that Kim and Kim’s (2013) modification of Cable and DeRue’s (2002) scale was an acceptable instrument for measuring person-supervisor fit. Further support is identified and described in the sections of the Literature Review focusing on person-supervisor fit.

Person-organization fit and person-supervisor fit. The research on person-organization fit and person-supervisor fit includes an important meta-analysis by Kristof-Brown et al. (2005) which provided the rationale for this study. The researchers conducted the meta-analysis to examine the different ways in which person-environment fit is conceptualized and to investigate the relationships between the four dimensions of person-environment fit: person-group fit, person-job fit, person-organization fit, and person-supervisor fit, as well as the relationships of each dimension with employee outcomes. Using 172 studies garnered from a search of published articles, conference presentations, dissertations, and working papers, the researchers found that each dimension of fit was most strongly related to its corresponding aspect of the work environment; i.e., organizational commitment was most strongly influenced by person-organization fit, satisfaction with coworkers by person-group fit, job satisfaction by person-job fit, and satisfaction with supervisor by person-supervisor fit. However, the four dimensions of fit were only moderately related to each other, particularly the relationships between person-supervisor fit and the other three dimensions of fit. Given that only 17 usable studies on person-supervisor fit were found for this meta-analysis, the researchers stated that person-supervisor fit was an underexplored area of fit, and more person-supervisor fit research was needed to contribute to an overall assessment of person-environment fit (Kristof-Brown et al., 2005). It is this gap in the literature that this study intended to bridge.

Another important study was conducted by Van Vianen et al. (2011), who sought to assess employee perceptions of person-organization fit and person-supervisor fit to relate them to organizational commitment. A sample of 360 supervisor-employee pairs from Taiwanese industries completed supervisor and employee surveys. Supervisor and employee perceptions of person-supervisor fit in regards to values, personality, lifestyle, and work style were measured by four items from the Perceived Person Environment Fit Scale (PPEFS; Chuang, Shen, & Judge, 2015). Person-organization fit was measured with a three-item person-organization fit scale (Cable & DeRue, 2002). The results showed that person-supervisor fit and person-organization fit were independently related to organizational commitment, but did not interact with each other, instead showing that high levels of person-supervisor fit were related to high levels of supervisor commitment, which facilitated high levels of organizational commitment.

The research on person-organization fit and person-supervisor fit shows that employees compare the similarity of the organization’s values to their own, as well as the similarity of the supervisor’s values to their own (Oren et al., 2012; Tartakovsky & Cohen, 2014; Tse & Troth, 2013; Zhang et al., 2012). Employees may distinguish between organizational fit and supervisor fit or they may combine them, particularly when an employee perceives the supervisor as a representative of the organization (Cornelis, Van Hiel, & De Cremer, 2011; Cornelis, Van Hiel, De Cremer, & Mayer, 2013; Kim et al., 2013; Van Vianen et al., 2011). A higher level of person-supervisor fit fosters stronger commitment to the supervisor, which in turn fosters stronger commitment to the organization (Dulebohn, Bommer, Liden, Brouer, & Ferris, 2011; Eisenberger, Shoss, Karagonlar, Gonzalez-Morales, Wickham, & Buffardi, 2014; Vandenberghe, Bentein, & Panaccio, 2014). However, studies also show that employees do not always view the supervisor as a primary representative of the organization and can distinguish their supervisor’s values from the organization’s values (Bhatti, Islam, Mirza, & Ali, 2015; Soldner & Crimando, 2010; Van Vianen et al., 2011). This is evidenced by the lack of statistical support for the relationships between person-supervisor fit and organizational constructs such as person-organization fit, organizational commitment, and organizational goals (Sun et al., 2014; Van Vianen et al., 2011). However, the researchers all pointed out that the lack of usable studies focusing on person-supervisor fit may have been the underlying factor impacting their results, and all stated the need for more studies assessing person-supervisor fit (e.g., Kristof-Brown et al., 2005; Sun et al., 2014; Van Vianen et al., 2011). This is the gap in person-supervisor fit research that this study intended to bridge.

Methodology and instrumentation.A three-item person-supervisor fit scale (Kim & Kim, 2013) was used in this study to measure perceived person-supervisor fit. Since supervisors can be seen as representatives of the organization (Cornelis et al., 2011; Kim et al., 2013; Van Vianen et al., 2011), employees may perceive that the supervisor’s values are similar to the organization’s values, basing their perception of person-organization fit on how congruent their values are with their supervisor’s values. Therefore, it was appropriate to use the three-item person-supervisor fit scale (Kim & Kim, 2013) to measure person-supervisor fit in this study.

Person-supervisor fit. Person-supervisor fit is a type of person-organization fit explained by the similarity/attraction or “similar to me” hypothesis, which states that people are more attracted to those they perceive to be similar to them, leading to the tendency to like and favor them more than those they perceive as less similar to them (Kim & Kim, 2013). Person-supervisor fit is based on the employee and the supervisor having similar values, goals, behavioral styles, or personalities and has demonstrated a positive relationship with supervisor-subordinate relationship quality (Kristof-Brown et al., 2005; Markham, Yammarino, Murry, & Palanski, 2010; Zhou & Schriesheim, 2010). Person-supervisor fit is based on the employee and the supervisor having similar values, goals, behavioral styles, or personalities, and has demonstrated a positive relationship with job satisfaction, supervisor satisfaction, and supervisor-subordinate relationship quality (Kristof-Brown et al., 2005; Landry, Vandenberghe, & Ayed, 2014; Markham et al., 2010; Oren et al., 2012; Zhang et al., 2012; Zhang, Li, & Harris, 2015; Zhou & Schriesheim, 2010). Leader-member exchange (LMX) theory states that employees believe that the key features of a positive supervisor-subordinate relationship are mutual trust, respect, and support, and LMX is often studied as a dimension of person-supervisor fit (Farr-Wharton, Brunetto, & Shacklock, 2011).

Person-supervisor fit and leader-member exchange. The research on LMX as a dimension of person-supervisor fit shows that employees who feel they have a positive relationship with their supervisor of mutual trust, respect, and support feel more empowered at work, report higher levels of fit within their organization, and perceive more similarity between themselves and their supervisor (Farr-Wharton et al., 2011; Jackson & Johnson, 2012; Sluss & Thompson, 2012). These findings from LMX research align with the definition of person-supervisor fit as perceived similarity between the employee and the supervisor. Employees are more likely to report higher levels of person-supervisor fit if they perceive higher levels of LMX with their supervisor. The quality of guidance, advice, and empowerment a supervisor provides can positively influence the employee’s perception of LMX (Farr-Wharton et al., 2011; Jackson & Johnson, 2012), which in turn may positively influence the employee’s job satisfaction and perception of person-supervisor fit (Sluss & Thompson, 2012). Sluss and Thompson (2012) measured job satisfaction using the Michigan Organizational Assessment Questionnaire Job Satisfaction Subscale (MOAQ-JSS; Cammann et al., 1983), providing support for the scale to be used in this study to measure job satisfaction.

Person-supervisor fit and value congruence.The research on person-supervisor fit and value congruence supports the notion that for person-supervisor fit to be achieved, there must be similarity between the employee and the supervisor in terms of values (Inceoglu & Warr, 2011; Prottas, 2013; Spanjol et al., 2015). The degree of fit is indicated by the amount of similarity the employee perceives between his or her own values and the values of the supervisor (Van Vianen et al., 2011), in accordance with the definition of supplementary fit in the literature, which is the employee’s assessment of the extent to which the employee’s personal values are congruent with the values of the organization (Cable & Edwards, 2004; Guan et al., 2011). Value congruence is associated with higher quality LMX, which leads to higher levels of employee outcomes such as commitment, performance, and job satisfaction (Zhang et al., 2012). Incongruence between supervisor and employee leads to lower quality LMX (Zhang et al., 2012). The relationship between person-supervisor fit and value congruence is supported by the similarity/attraction or “similar to me” theory, which states that people are more attracted to those they perceive to share similar characteristics (Byrne et al., 1967; Collisson & Howell, 2014; Kim & Kim, 2013; Montoya & Horton, 2013), such as organizational values. For example, Hayibor et al. (2011) found that employees who perceive their CEOs as charismatic leaders are more likely to perceive that their values are similar to their CEO’s values. The research on person-supervisor fit and value congruence also shows that in order to achieve person-supervisor fit, employees will adjust their values to align with their perception of their supervisors’ values, even adjusting down if they perceive that the importance the supervisor places on a particular value is not in alignment (Mullins & Syam, 2014).

Motivation. Motivation is defined in the workplace as an employee’s desire to perform work-related behaviors for their own sake or due to promised reward or threat of punishment (Myers, 2009). Motivation can be either intrinsic or extrinsic. Extrinsic motivation is an employee’s desire to perform work-related behaviors due to promised rewards or punishment (Myers, 2009), while intrinsic motivation is an employee’s desire to perform work-related behaviors for their own sake (Myers, 2009). Motivation research in the workplace has searched for answers to questions of what motivates people to perform at work, such as financial rewards or the gain or loss of position, and also what may be lacking in the workplace that may cause people to be less motivated to perform. Motivation has been studied in the realm of person-environment fit to explore whether fit influences motivation or vice versa. The relationships between motivation and employee outcomes such as job satisfaction have also been studied to understand the influences they may have on one another.

Motivation and person-organization fit. The research on person-organization fit and motivation largely focuses on the ability of the employee’s perceived person-organization fit to predict or influence the level of motivation the employee will have to perform their job or other work-related actions. Motivation has been found to increase as person-organization fit increases (Kim, 2012), with one study finding that employees who perceived positive support from their organization experienced increased levels of motivation (Roche & Haar, 2013). In addition, the perception of a high-quality supervisor-subordinate relationship increases motivation as well as person-organization fit (Kim et al., 2013). This supports the observation that employees often view the supervisor as an agent of the organization (Kim et al., 2013); therefore, perceived fit with the supervisor would compare similarly to perceived fit with the organization. Since supervisors are generally the most accessible representatives of the organization to employees, their treatment of employees can influence how employees perceive their fit with the organization, as well as their motivation to perform in ways that benefit the organization (Kim, 2012).

Methodology and instrumentation.In both previously described studies of person-organization fit and motivation, a three-item person-organization fit scale developed by Cable and DeRue (2002) was used to measure employee perceptions of person-organization fit (e.g., Kim, 2012; Kim et al., 2013). Since supervisors can be seen as representatives of the organization (Kim et al., 2013), employees may perceive that the supervisor’s values are similar to organizational values, basing their perception of person-organization fit on how congruent their values are with their supervisor’s values. Notably, there is a lack of research that focuses on examining motivation as a variable or an outcome in person-organization fit studies, as compared to the amount of studies that focus on motivation and job satisfaction together. This gap presents an opportunity for more research in which extrinsic motivation or intrinsic motivation are primary variables or outcomes, as they are in this study.

Motivation and person-supervisor fit. The research on person-supervisor fit and motivation primarily involves person-supervisor fit influencing an employee’s motivation to perform their job or leave their job (Hoffman et al., 2011; Peters et al., 2012). Hoffman et al. (2011) used a three-item person-supervisor fit scale adapted from Cable and DeRue (2002) to measure employee perceptions of person-supervisor value congruence. Surprisingly, Hoffman et al. (2011) found that while motivation increased as person-organization fit increased, person-supervisor fit did not have a significant effect on motivation, which runs counter to findings in the literature stating that the quality of the relationship between the employee and the supervisor influences employee motivation (Kim et al., 2013; Peters et al., 2012). Peters et al. (2012) provided further support with their observation that when employees perceive dissimilarity between themselves and their leaders, their motivation to align with the group is reduced, suggesting that leaders should work harder to motivate employees by aligning the image of the group with the characteristics of the employees.

There are considerably few studies that focus on motivation as a variable or an outcome in person-supervisor fit research, as discussed previously regarding the research on motivation and person-organization fit. The research on person-supervisor fit itself is limited (Kristof-Brown et al., 2005; Van Vianen et al., 2011). Additionally, Diefendorff and Chandler (2011) noted that motivation is “one of the most difficult constructs to study in all of psychology” (p. 65) because it has a changeable quality. Motivation can vary over time, across individuals, and within individuals (Dalal & Hulin, 2008; as cited in Diefendorff & Chandler, 2011). Perhaps this may explain why there are so few studies about how motivation is associated with dimensions of person-environment fit.

Motivation and job satisfaction. Motivation and job satisfaction can be summarized as follows: “Motivation is a process of satisfying employees’ different needs and expectations” (Yurtseven & Halici, 2012, p. 72). The research on motivation and job satisfaction is extensive, yet largely comes to the same conclusion that motivation and job satisfaction are indeed related and are important considerations for industrial/organizational psychologists, HR professionals, and managers in addressing the needs of employees (Diefendorff & Chandler, 2011). The literature represents historical as well as modern theories of motivation and job satisfaction. Schleicher et al. (2011), in a review of literature about job attitudes and work values, discussed the hundred-year history of research on motivation and job satisfaction. Münsterberg’s theory of work motivation stated that the pleasant feelings that individuals have regarding their work must be stronger than any unpleasant feelings in order for workers to be satisfied and motivated (Jex & Britt, 2014). Maslow’s (1943) well-known hierarchy of needs theory stated that people are satisfied when specific physiological and psychological needs are met (Gaki, Kontodimopoulos, & Niakas, 2013; Maslow, 1943), which inspired additional research on employee outcomes such as motivation and job satisfaction. Herzberg’s (1966) two-factor theory stated that job satisfaction was caused by a specific set of motivators that were different from the set of motivators that caused job dissatisfaction (Herzberg, 1966), positing that intrinsically meaningful work motivated employees to be productive more so than extrinsic motivators, such as salary. While the removal or reduction of extrinsic motivators could cause dissatisfaction, they could not create satisfaction on their own because they did not provide employees with a sense of accomplishment, as intrinsic motivators did (Herzberg, 1966; Tan & Waheed, 2011).

The research on motivation and job satisfaction demonstrates that the relationship between motivation and job satisfaction is a well-established one that has been used to study other contributing factors, such as affective commitment, employee engagement, and transformation leadership (Bang et al., 2013; Diefendorff & Chandler, 2011; He, 2014). Bang et al. (2013) concluded that volunteers who are motivated by values may be more satisfied with their volunteer experience and more committed to continue volunteering for a nonprofit organization if the volunteers’ motives for volunteering are achieved. He (2014) found considerable evidence showing that motivation plays an important role in determining outcomes that may result in employee engagement, including job satisfaction. Individuals are more engaged in their work when they are satisfied with their job (He, 2014). Diefendorff and Chandler (2011), in a review of literature about the topic of motivating employees, made several observations about job satisfaction as it relates to employee motivation. They reasoned that so many motivation studies focus on job satisfaction because of the idea that if an employee is satisfied with what they are doing, they will be motivated to work longer and harder (Machado-Taylor, Soares, Ferreira, & Gouveia, 2011). They acknowledged the increasing interest in transformational leadership research and the role transformational leaders play in motivating their employees, which increases job satisfaction (Barrick, Thurgood, Smith, & Courtright, 2015). The authors also discuss self-determination theory research, which states that intrinsic forms of motivation are associated with higher levels of job satisfaction more so than extrinsic forms of motivation (Gagné & Deci, 2005; Moran, Diefendorff, Kim, & Liu, 2012).

When organizations fail to address employee motivation as a high priority, job satisfaction suffers (Yurtseven & Halici, 2012). In their study of hotel housekeeping staff members in Turkey, Yurtseven and Halici (2012) stated that if management did not address the motivational factors that were important to the employees, their levels of job satisfaction would suffer, which could affect service quality. Studies also emphasize the need for organizations to address employee stress levels which, when high, affected motivation negatively (Li, Wang, You, & Gao, 2015; Parker et al., 2010). While researchers agree that organizations would benefit from placing employee motivation and job satisfaction in high importance, there have been surprisingly few studies on how employees’ relationships with their supervisors, i.e. person-supervisor fit, impact motivation and job satisfaction. It is this gap that this study intended to bridge.

Methodology and instrumentation.This study used the three-item Intrinsic Motivation Subscale (Tremblay et al., 2009) and the three-item Extrinsic Motivation Subscale (Tremblay et al., 2009) to measure intrinsic motivation and extrinsic motivation, respectively. In three of the workplace motivation studies reviewed here, Tremblay et al.’s (2009) motivation subscales were used to measure motivation (e.g., He, 2014; Parker et al., 2010; Roche & Haar, 2013). He (2014) studied the role of motivation in employee engagement, finding a positive relationship between employee engagement and job satisfaction. Parker, Jimmieson, and Amiot (2010) found that motivation was impacted negatively by high employee stress levels, with job satisfaction and perceived organizational support contributing to stress. Roche and Haar (2013) made observations about the influence of organizational perception upon motivation. These studies measuring motivation in relation to job satisfaction provided support for the Extrinsic and Intrinsic Motivation Subscales (Tremblay et al., 2009) to be used in this study to measure extrinsic and intrinsic motivation.

Job satisfaction. Job satisfaction is defined as the degree to which an employee is satisfied with their job (Hoffman-Miller, 2013). Job satisfaction has been studied in the realm of person-environment fit to explore whether fit influences job satisfaction, or whether job satisfaction influences fit, or if job satisfaction and fit have a reciprocal relationship (Gabriel et al., 2013). The relationships between job satisfaction and employee outcomes such as motivation, job performance, and turnover have also been studied to understand the influences they may have on one another (Kristof-Brown & Billsberry, 2013; Liu et al., 2010; Rehfuss et al., 2012). I/O psychologists and HR professionals have become more concerned with addressing job satisfaction in the face of a turbulent economy (Rehfuss et al., 2012). With budget cuts decreasing employee numbers and increasing the amount of work the remaining employees are responsible for, it is important to organizations to keep their employees satisfied so that the organization does not lose valuable, experienced employees to turnover (Wong & Spence Laschinger, 2015).

Job satisfaction and person-organization fit. The research on job satisfaction and person-organization fit roundly concludes that person-organization fit and job satisfaction have a positive relationship. Gabriel et al. (2013) found that the two have a reciprocal relationship; that is, as person-organization fit increases, job satisfaction increases, and as job satisfaction continues to increase, person-organization fit continues to increase. Employees who perceive a good fit with their organization are more likely to report high levels of satisfaction with their jobs (Boon et al., 2011; Liu et al., 2010; Rehfuss et al., 2012). Rehfuss et al. (2012) advised that in order for counselors to improve job satisfaction, they should seek to work for organizations whose values are consistent with their own. The research also showed that a positive relationship between person-organization fit and job satisfaction has a positive effect on other employee outcomes, such as turnover, organizational commitment, and positive affect. Liu et al. (2010) found that person-organization fit affected job satisfaction positively and turnover negatively, meaning that respondents who perceived better fit with their organization reported higher levels of job satisfaction and were less likely to leave the organization. Gutierrez et al. (2012) reported that employees with higher levels of person-organization fit were more committed to remaining with their organizations. Gabriel et al. (2013) proposed that organizations focus on improving perceptions of fit among employees to increase job satisfaction and positive affect in the workplace. Clearly, perceived person-organization fit is an important predictor of job satisfaction (Gabriel et al., 2013; Gutierrez et al., 2012; Liu et al., 2010; Rehfuss et al., 2012).

Methodology and instrumentation.Each of the studies on person-organization fit and job satisfaction reviewed here used the three-item person-organization fit scale developed by Cable and DeRue (2002) to measure employee perceptions of person-organization fit (e.g., Kim, 2012; Kim et al., 2013). Gabriel et al. (2013) measured job satisfaction using the MOAQ-JSS (Cammann et al., 1983). The MOAQ-JSS (Cammann et al., 1983) was also used by Sluss and Thompson (2012) to measure job satisfaction in their study of leader-member exchange and job satisfaction, which provides further support for the use of the MOAQ-JSS to measure job satisfaction in the proposed study. Since person-supervisor fit is a dimension of person-environment fit, the conclusions from the research on job satisfaction and person-organization fit could apply to job satisfaction and person-supervisor fit as well, but more research was needed on person-supervisor fit before such conclusions could be made with confidence. This is another element of the gap that this study intended to bridge.

Job satisfaction and person-supervisor fit. Larson et al.’s (2013) study influenced the method of administration of this study. Larson et al.’s (2013) study focused on the concept of psychological capital, evaluated the similarities between employee psychological capital and supervisor psychological capital, and investigated the influence psychological capital may have on person-organization fit and job satisfaction.Psychological capital is defined as a person’s positive psychological state of development characterized by self-efficacy, optimism, hope, and resilience (Larson et al., 2013). A sample of 1002 participants was recruited through SurveyMonkey to complete a web-based survey instrument, which included a 24-item psychological capital questionnaire (Avey, Reichard, Luthans, & Mhatre, 2011) to measure the level of congruence between supervisor and employee psychological capital. A six-item organizational fit scale (Lee, Mitchell, Sablynski, Burton, & Holtom, 2004; Zhang, Fried, & Griffeth, 2012) was used to measure person-organization fit, and a three-item scale developed by Oldham and Hackman (2010) was used to measure job satisfaction. The results indicated that perceived person-organization fit may be influenced by the level of psychological capital similarity between supervisors and employees, suggesting that employees who demonstrate high levels of psychological capital similarity with their supervisors report higher levels of job satisfaction. The findings were in accordance with conclusions from previous person-supervisor fit research, indicating that a social constitution exists between a supervisor and employee which improves job satisfaction, and that employees who perceive better fit with the organization experience higher levels of job satisfaction.

The research on job satisfaction and person-supervisor fit concludes that employees who perceive better fit with their supervisors report higher levels of job satisfaction, organizational commitment, turnover, and person-organization fit (Kim & Kim, 2013; Larson et al., 2013; Oh et al., 2014). Employees who feel that their values match with their supervisors’ values experience more psychological empowerment at work and tend to demonstrate better job performance than employees who perceive poorer fit with their supervisors (Kim & Kim, 2013; Oh et al., 2014). Psychological empowerment focuses on task motivation and is associated with employee outcomes like organizational commitment, job satisfaction, and job performance (Gutierrez et al., 2012; Jose & Mampilly, 2015; Kim & Kim, 2013). A high level of person-supervisor fit indicates that a supervisor has a greater understanding of the employee’s wants and needs and actively boosts the employee’s confidence in performing their job, resulting in higher employee self-efficacy and improved work performance (Kim & Kim, 2013; Oh et al., 2014). When person-supervisor fit is studied from the supervisor’s perspective, findings show that a supervisor who perceives greater fit with an employee is more likely to respect, support, and trust the employee, which in turn leads to a more positive perception of the supervisor by the employee (Van Vianen et al., 2011). Person-supervisor fit also influences the employee’s commitment to the supervisor because the employee perceives the respect, support, and trust as being mutual (Farr-Wharton et al., 2011).

While Oh et al. (2014) acknowledged that person-supervisor fit has drawn more attention from fit researchers, since Kristof-Brown et al. (2005) highlighted the need for more person-supervisor fit research in their meta-analysis, it was clear that still more research was needed in this dimension of person-environment fit. Oh et al.’s (2014) inability to find any primary studies in Europe on person-group fit or person-supervisor fit was evidence of this need. This study intended to answer the call for more person-supervisor fit research as it related to job satisfaction.

Job satisfaction and value congruence.The research on job satisfaction and value congruence has found that job satisfaction has a positive relationship with value congruence (Gammoh, Mallin, & Pullins, 2014; Kumar, 2012; Mullins & Syam, 2014; Ren, 2013); as the level of perceived congruence between an employee’s personal values and the organization’s values increases, job satisfaction increases. Ren’s (2013) findings indicated that employees who rated their value congruence as high also reported higher levels of job satisfaction. This is consistent with previous evidence that person-organization value congruence has a positive influence on job satisfaction and satisfaction with leaders. The results of Gammoh et al.’s (2014) study suggested that perceived value congruence had a positive relationship with job satisfaction, through the mediating variables of salesperson brand identification (SBI) and salesperson company identification (SCI). Kumar’s (2012) findings revealed that perceived organizational values were a stronger predictor of job satisfaction than personal values. Employees are more satisfied with their jobs when they are working for organizations that share their values. Kumar (2012) suggested that organizational values were more predictive of job satisfaction because employees do not expect to be required to change their personal values to align with the organization’s, but rather, employees expect that the organization will adjust its values to align with employees’ personal values. Ren (2013) recommended that organizations realize that value congruence has different effects on different types of employees, and understanding those differences can help organizations motivate employees and maximize the benefits of employee motivation, which may include higher job satisfaction.

While it could be assumed that observations about person-organization value congruence could extend to person-supervisor value congruence, more research was needed that focused on the level of perceived congruence between an employee’s personal values and their supervisor’s values and the impact of person-supervisor value congruence on job satisfaction. Previous research indicated that person-organization value congruence influenced an employee’s satisfaction with their leader (Ren, 2013), but this did not specifically account for the leader’s values and the compatibility with the employee’s values. This type of compatibility is called supplementary fit and occurs when an employee’s personal characteristics are a good match with those of the supervisor (Cable & Edwards, 2004; Latham, 2011; Muchinsky & Monahan, 1987). Supplementary fit has been found to have a positive relationship with employee satisfaction (Kristof-Brown et al., 2005; Gutierrez et al., 2012). Importantly, Cable and DeRue (2002) state that perceived fit is a better predictor of employee outcomes, such as job satisfaction and performance, than the actual congruence between the employee and the environment. This study assessed person-supervisor value congruence and its relationship with job satisfaction to address the lack of literature specific to the two variables.

Summary

Research that focused on the perception of person-supervisor fit by employees was limited in comparison to the amount of research that focused on person-organization fit perceptions (Kristof-Brown et al., 2005; Van Vianen et al., 2011). On the other hand, the field of I/O psychology was inundated with research on motivation and job satisfaction. Previous research established that there was a relationship between person-organization fit and motivation in the workplace (Kim et al., 2013; Kim, 2012), as well as person-organization fit and job satisfaction (Gabriel et al., 2013; Liu et al., 2010; Rehfuss et al., 2012; Gutierrez et al., 2012); however, it could not be assumed that a measured degree of person-organization fit was representative of an employee’s perceived degree of person-supervisor fit. The purpose of this study was to measure person-supervisor fit and explore how extrinsic motivation, intrinsic motivation, and job satisfaction influenced this fit. The goal of this study was to contribute to the limited amount of research on person-supervisor fit by investigating these relationships in greater detail, attempting to determine if person-supervisor fit had correlational relationships with extrinsic motivation, intrinsic motivation, and job satisfaction.

This literature review surveyed scholarly articles, books, and sources such as dissertations and conference proceedings relevant to issues, research, and theory in the area of person-supervisor fit and its relationships with motivation and job satisfaction. The literature review clarified the contribution person-supervisor fit research can make to the current understanding of person-environment fit. From the examination of the broader topic of person-organization fit and its relationships with value congruence and person-supervisor fit, it was concluded that the lack of usable studies focusing on person-supervisor fit may be the underlying factor impacting the statistical significance of the results of the studies reviewed, which all stated the need for more studies assessing person-supervisor fit (e.g., Kristof-Brown et al., 2005; Sun et al., 2014; Van Vianen et al., 2011). In regards to the narrower, less-researched topic of person-supervisor fit and its relationships with value congruence and leader-member exchange, it was concluded that person-supervisor fit research deserved more attention due to the positive benefits organizations may experience from high levels of person-supervisor fit among employees, including higher job satisfaction (Sluss & Thompson, 2012), higher organizational commitment (Zhang et al., 2012), and improved job performance (Mullins & Syam, 2014). The analysis of the research relating motivation to person-organization fit, person-supervisor fit, and job satisfaction concluded that while motivation was a widely-researched topic, especially with respect to job satisfaction, there were too few studies relating motivation to person-supervisor fit (Hoffman et al., 2011). The overview of the research relating job satisfaction to person-organization fit, person-supervisor fit, and value congruence concluded that while job satisfaction is also a widely-researched topic, there was a shortage of studies focusing on the relationship between job satisfaction and person-supervisor fit (Oh et al., 2014).

This literature review supported the use of the three measurement instruments that were employed in this study. A three-item person-organization fit scale (Cable & DeRue, 2002) was used in several studies to measure person-organization fit (e.g., Boon et al., 2011; Gabriel et al., 2013; Gutierrez et al., 2012; Kim, 2012; Kim et al., 2013; Liu et al., 2010; Rehfuss et al., 2012; Van Vianen et al., 2011; Van Vuuren et al., 2007) and was adapted in other studies to measure person-supervisor fit (e.g., Hoffman et al., 2011; Kim & Kim, 2013). The MOAQ-JSS (Cammann et al., 1983) was used in two studies to measure job satisfaction (e.g., Gabriel et al., 2013; Sluss & Thompson, 2012). The three-item Intrinsic Motivation Subscale (Tremblay et al., 2009) and the three-item Extrinsic Motivation Subscale (Tremblay et al., 2009) were used in four studies to measure intrinsic and extrinsic motivation (e.g., He, 2014; Parker et al., 2010; Roche & Haar, 2013; Stoeber, Davis, & Townley, 2013). Chapter 3 of this dissertation describes these instruments in detail and discusses the research methodology and design, identifies the specific data sources for data collection, discusses the validity and reliability of the selected instruments, describes the data collection and analysis procedures, and discusses ethical considerations, limitations, and delimitations of this study.

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