Research in the organizational psychology and organizational behaviour literature has identified the existence of multiple dimensions of OC and found different relationships between these dimensions and important organizational factors and outcomes. In an attempt to add to the efforts to clarify these relationships, this study focuses on the relationships between organizational factors such as human resources management (HRM) practices, leadership and trust, and organizational commitment within an academic environment. A sample of 246 employees from eleven South African institutions of higher learning was used in the study. The sample was made up of 67.88% respondents from Technikons and 28.86% from Universities. Females accounted for 45.12% of the sample while males were 54.51%. The average age of respondents was 41.9 years. ANOVA was used to determine the relationship between demographic factors and organizational commitment. The results of the ANOVAs showed no significant relationship between the demographic factors and organizational commitment. The only significant relationship was found between the type of academic institution and total organizational commitment. Tukey’s studentized range test indicated significant differences in the means of respondents from full-time residential institutions and those from institutions with a combination of fulltime residential and part-time non-residential students. Respondents from the later type of institutions had reported more total organizational commitment. Pearson’s Product Moment Coefficient was used to determine the inter-relationships between the total scales and subscales of the different variables. Significant inter-correlations were found between trust and HRM, trust and organizational commitment, leadership style and trust, and leadership style and HRM. Multiple Regression Analysis indicated weak predictions of organizational commitment by the different independent variables. Structural equations models could not be accepted as they showed weak fits with the data. In light of these findings, suggestions are provided for academic institution managers to evaluate the role of HRM practices, leadership style and trust in influencing commitment to the organization and organizational trust. Suggestions are also made as to how leadership style and HRM practices can affect the role of trust in the development of organizational commitment, and how OC research can provide practical results for academic institutions.
Thesis (PhD (Organizational Behaviour))--University of Pretoria, 2005.