Organizational commitment
Organizational commitment in the fields of Organizational Behavior and Industrial/Organizational Psychology is, in a general sense, the employee's psychological attachment to the organization. It can be contrasted with other work-related attitudes, such as job satisfaction
Job satisfaction
Job satisfaction describes how content an individual is with his /her job. The happier people are within their job, the more satisfied they are said to be. Job satisfaction is not the same as motivation or aptitude, although it is clearly linked...

, defined as an employee's feelings about their job, and organizational identification
Organizational identification
-Definitions of Identification and Organizational Identification:Phillip Tompkins one was of the first to use the phrase 'organizational identification' and is a pioneer in the study of organizational communication . Simon has also been given credit for establishing organizational identification...

, defined as the degree to which an employee experiences a 'sense of oneness' with their organization.

Beyond this general sense, organizational scientists have developed many nuanced definitions of organizational commitment, and numerous scales to measure them. Exemplary of this work is Meyer & Allen's model of commitment, which was developed to integrate numerous definitions of commitment that had proliferated in the literature.

Model of commitment

According to Meyer and Allen's (1991) three-component model of commitment, prior research indicated that there are three "mind sets" which can characterize an employee's commitment to the organization:

Affective Commitment: AC is defined as the employee's positive emotional attachment to the organization. An employee who is affectively committed strongly identifies with the goals of the organization and desires to remain a part of the organization. This employee commits to the organization because he/she "wants to". In developing this concept, Meyer and Allen drew largely on Mowday, Porter, and Steers's (1982) concept of commitment, which in turn drew on earlier work by Kanter (1968).

Continuance Commitment: The individual commits to the organization because he/she perceives high costs of losing organizational membership (cf. Becker's 1960 "side bet theory"),including economic costs (such as pension accruals) and social costs (friendship ties with co-workers) that would be incurred. The employee remains a member of the organization because he/she "has to".

Normative Commitment: The individual commits to and remains with an organization because of feelings of obligation. These feelings may derive from many sources. For example, the organization may have invested resources in training an employee who then feels a 'moral' obligation to put forth effort on the job and stay with the organization to 'repay the debt.' It may also reflect an internalized norm, developed before the person joins the organization through family or other socialization processes, that one should be loyal to one's organization. The employee stays with the organization because he/she "ought to".

Types of employee discharge
  • Intellectual Commitment(full)
  • Emotional Commitment (full)
  • Financial Commitment (phased)

Guidelines to enhance organizational commitment.

Five rules help to enhance organizational commitment:
Commit to people-first values: Put it in writing, hire the right-kind managers, and walk the talk.
Clarify and communicate your mission: Clarify the mission and ideology; make it charismatic; use value-based hiring practices; stress values-based orientation and training; build tradition.
Guarantee organizational justice: Have a comprehensive grievance procedure; provide for extensive two-way communications.
Community of practice: Build value-based homogeneity; share and ahare alike; emphasize barnraising, cross-utilization, and teamwork; getting people to work together.
Support employee development: Commit to actualizing; provide first-year job challenge; enrich and empower; promote from within; provide developmental activities; provide employee security without guarantees.
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