THE INDEPENDENT VARIABLES
The independent variables are the major determinants of productivity, absenteeism, Organizational citizenship behavior (OCB), turnover, and Job satisfaction. Consistent with our belief that organizational behavior can best be understood when viewed essentially as a set of increasingly complex building blocks, the base, or first level, of our model lies in understanding individual behavior.
Organizational Citizenship Behavior (OCB)
Discretionary behavior is not a part of an employeeâ€™s formal job requirements but promotes the effective functioning of the organization.
Successful organizations need employees, who will do more than their usual job duties who will provide performance that is beyond expectations. In todayâ€™s dynamic workplace, where tasks are increasingly done in teams and where flexibility is critical. Organizations need employees whoâ€™ll engage in â€œgood citizenshipâ€? behaviors such as helping others on their team, volunteering for extra work, avoiding unnecessary conflicts, respecting the spirit as well as the letter of rules and regulations. They must be in a position to gracefully tolerate the occasional work-related impositions and nuisances.
Organizations want and need employees who will do those things that arenâ€™t in any job description. The evidence indicates that the organizations that have such employees outperform those that donâ€™t. As a result, Organizational Behavior is concerned with organizational citizenship behavior as a dependent variable.
It has been said that managers must work with used not new human beings. The individuals when they enter an organization are a bit like used cars. Each is different. Some are â€œlow-mileageâ€?- they have been treated carefully and have had only limited exposure to the realities of the elements. Others are â€œwell worn,â€? having been driven over some rough roads. It means that people enter organizations with certain intact characteristics that will influence their behavior at work.
The more obvious of these are personal or biographical characteristics such as age and gender; personality characteristics; an inherent emotional framework; values and attitudes; and basic ability levels. These characteristics are essentially in place when an individual enters the workforce, and, for the most part, there is little management can do to alter them. Yet they have a very real impact on employee behavior. Therefore, each of these factors biographical characteristics, ability, values, attitudes, personality, and emotions are considered as independent variables.
There are four other individual-level variables that have been shown to affect employee behavior: perception, individual decision making, learning, and motivation.
The behavior of the people in groups is more than the sum total of all the individuals acting in their own way. The complexity of our model is increased when we acknowledge that peopleâ€™s behavior when they are in groups is different from their behavior when they are alone. Therefore, the next step in the development of an understanding of OB is the study of group behavior.
Organization Systems Level Variables
Organizational behavior reaches its highest level of sophistication when we add formal structure to our previous knowledge of individual and group behavior. Just as groups are more than the sum of their individual members, so are organizations more than the sum of their members groups. The design of the formal organization; the organizationâ€™s internal culture; and the organizationâ€™s human resources policies and practices (that is, selection processes, training and development programs, performance evaluation methods) all have an impact on the dependent variables.