Psychological Contracts in Employment: Cross-National Perspectives


Edited by: Denise M. Rousseau & René Schalk

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    This book has been a team effort in the writing as well as in the production process. We wish to thank Carole McCoy for word processing and Cathy Senderling for copy editing; both having displayed great creativity and patience. Harry Briggs and Marquita Flemming of Sage Publications supported us from the outset of this project to its completion. Astrid Virding coordinated the final editorial work on the manuscript. It is a blessing to work with people who love books.

    Support for this project was provided by the H. J. Heinz II Endowment and the Carnegie Bosch Institute. Particularly we thank Mark Kamlet and Michael Trick for making this support available to us and taking a developmental (i.e., long-term) view of this project.

  • About the Contributors

    Soon Ang heads the Division of Strategy, Management and Organization at the Nanyang Business School in Singapore. She is Director of the Singapore-Human Resource RoundTable (HARRT-Singapore), an institutional affiliate with HARRT-UCLA, and is Deputy Director of the Information Management Research Center (IMARC). She received her PhD from the University of Minnesota in management information systems with concentrations in management and industrial/organizational psychology. She specializes in cross-cultural OB, managing high-technology professionals, and outsourcing. Her papers have appeared in the Academy of Management Journal, Organization Science, Social Forces, Information Systems Research, MIS Quarterly, and other journals. She has won Best Paper Awards at the Academy of Management Meetings and the Hawaiian International Conference in Systems Sciences (HICSS) for research in compensation and outsourcing of information technology professionals. She is an associate editor for Information Systems Research and MIS Quarterly and serves on the editorial boards of Group and Organizational Management and Journal of Organizational Behavior.

    Loïc Cadin (ESSEC, Doctorat de gestion) is Associate Professor at ESCP-EAP (Paris, Oxford, Berlin, Madrid), Graduate School of Management. Before becoming a full time professor he had different positions in the Human Resource Management function in several companies. His current research deals with careers and international comparisons of Human Research Management practices. He has also published about organizations and competencies development. He contributed recently to a book edited by M. Peiperl, M. Arthur, R. Goffee, T. Morris, Career Frontiers: New Conceptions of Working Lives.

    George Zhen Xiong Chen received his PhD from the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology and is currently Assistant Professor at Hong Kong Baptist University. He specializes in organizational commitment, loyalty to supervisor, and Chinese management. His current research focuses on cross-cultural management, leader-member exchange, organizational justice, and psychological contracts in Chinese context.

    Hector R. Diaz-Saenz is working on his PhD in organizational communication in the Department of Communication Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. Formerly, he was Director of Executive Education at the Graduate School of Business and Leadership of ITESM, Monterrey Campus (Monterrey Institute of Technology). His areas of interest are organizational culture and leadership, with a focus on change and the usage of internal communication practices in organizations established in Mexico. He has published articles in COMARI, the Mexican Confederation of Industrial Relations magazine, and coauthored a recent article in Management Communication Quarterly. He is a member of the Monterrey (Mexico) chapter of Executives of Industrial Relations Association.

    Charissa Freese received her master's degree in work and organizational psychology from Tilburg University in the Netherlands, where she is working on a dissertation on the dynamics of psychological contracts during organizational transformation. The English-language journals in which she has published are Leadership and Organization Development Journal and European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology.

    Peter Herriot is consultant with CSA Management Consultants, UK. He is Visiting Professor at the City University Business School and at the University of Surrey. He has consulted and written widely on career management and the nature and conduct of the employment relationship. His most recent book is Trust and Transition: Managing Today's Employment Relationship (with Wendy Hirsh and Peter Reilly, 1998). He is about to retire as editor of the European Journal of Work and Organisational Psychology (1995–2000). He is a convinced Europhile and is concerned about relating more closely the practitioner and academic perspectives on work and organizations.

    Kerr Inkson is Professor of Management at the Auckland campus of Massey University, New Zealand. He has held positions at the University of Aston (UK) and the Universities of Otago and Auckland in New Zealand. His research areas have included organization structure, orientations to work, and, more recently, career theory and development. He has published eight books and many refereed papers. In 1997 he was awarded Best International Paper at the Academy of Management. His most recent book (with Michael B. Arthur and Judith K. Pringle) is The New Careers: Individual Action and Economic Change (1999).

    Maddy Janssens joined the faculty of the Applied Economics Department of Catholic University of Leuven in Belgium after receiving her PhD in Psychology in 1992. She studied at Northwestern University, where she received a Master of Science degree in Organization Behavior. She held a faculty appointment at INSEAD in France during 1996 and was a visiting faculty at the Stern School of Business, New York University, during 1999. Her research is oriented toward Intercultural Management and Human Resource Management. She has published international articles in the areas of expatriate management, cross-cultural methodology, transnational teams, and international HRM. As guest editor, she just finished a special issue about new theoretical developments within Human Resource Management. Her current research interests focus on diversity in HRM, intercultural processes in transnational teams, and multiparty collaboration in the context of minority children's integration in the school system.

    Nerina L. Jimmieson received her PhD in 1998 from the University of Queensland, where she examined a range of different organizational characteristics as moderating variables in the stress-strain relationship. She is currently a full-time Lecturer in the School of Management at the Queensland University of Technology, where she teaches research methodology and topics related to human resource management. Employing both laboratory and field methodologies, her research is concerned with the identification of organizational characteristics that may assist employees to use work control opportunities more effectively under conditions of work stress. Recent publications have appeared in the International Review of Industrial and Organizational Psychology, Journal of Organizational Behavior, Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology, Applied Psychology: An International Review, and Journal of Occupational Health Psychology.

    Boris Kabanoff received his PhD in 1979 from the Flinders University of South Australia, where he examined the effects of task type and group structure on group performance. He is currently Head of School in the School of Management at the Queensland University of Technology. He has published more than 40 book chapters and journal papers, including papers in such leading international journals as Psychological Bulletin, Academy of Management Review, Academy of Management Journal, and Journal of Applied Psychology. For the past 8 years, his main research concentration has been on the application of computer-aided text analysis (CATA) methodology to the study of a number of issues in industrial and organizational psychology. His leadership role in this emerging methodology has been recognized in the form of his editorship of a special issue for the Journal of Organizational Behavior in 1997 and the publication of some 10 papers and chapters employing this methodology.

    Moshe Krausz is on the faculty of Bar Ilan University's Psychology Department in Ramat Gan, Israel. He received his doctorate from the University of California at Berkeley. His research focuses upon absenteeism and turnover and the effects of shiftwork and employment status on job attitudes.

    Cynthia Lee received her PhD from University of Maryland and is currently Associate Professor at Northeastern University. She specializes in managing change, performance management, and work motivation. Her current research focuses on cross-cultural management including interaction and effectiveness in teams, understanding the changing nature of psychological contracts, and justice perceptions in Chinese contexts.

    Malcolm J. Lewis has a Diploma of Business, a Bachelor of Business (public administration), and a Master of Business Administration. He is currently a full-time Lecturer in the School of Management at the Queensland University of Technology. He has an extensive background in human resource management and management consulting in both the public and private sectors. His particular interests are in the human resource aspects of work and performance, training and development, and organizational consulting. He consults to a wide range of organizations related to his research and teaching interests.

    Lynne Millward (BA Hons, PhD. CPsychol, AFBPSs) is Course Director of the Master of Science course in Occupational & Organizational Psychology at the University of Surrey, Lecturer in Organizational Psychology and part of the Centre for Defence Psychology. Her research interests include issues pertaining to the Psychological Contract, and also Team and Group Processes. Before arriving at Surrey in 1994, she was a Consultant Business Psychologist at Wal-pole Ltd. in Farringdon, London where she specialized in the design and implementation of training and development solutions to organizational problems.

    Motohiro Morishima (PhD, University of Illinois, 1986) does research on the strategic aspects of Japanese corporations’ human resource management and industrial relations and has published widely in both U.S. and Japanese journals. He is currently Professor of Human Resource Management at the Graduate School of Business Administration at Keio University and also Special Visiting Researcher at the Japan Institute of Labour. Previously, he taught in the Faculty of Policy Management at Keio University; served as Visiting Associate Professor in the Institute of Labor and Industrial Relations at the University of Illinois and as Visiting Professor at the Institute of Economic Research at Hitotsubashi University; and was Senior Research Fellow at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. He also consults with major firms in Japan and conducts management development seminars for them. Recent publications include “Strategic Diversification of Japanese HRM” in Research in Personnel and Human Resource Management, edited by P. Wright, L. Dyer, J. Boudreau, and G. Mikovich.

    Human Resource Management, edited by P. Wright, L. Dyer, J. Boudreau, and G. Mikovich.

    Kok Yee Ng is a doctoral student in organizational behavior at Michigan State University and a Senior Tutor with the Nanyang Business School in Singapore. She received a first-class honors bachelor's degree in accounting from the Nanyang Business School and was awarded the prestigious Senior Tutorship overseas scholarship to pursue her doctoral studies at Michigan State. To date, she has published and presented her research at the Academy of Management meetings and has won the 1998 best paper award from the Human Resources Division. She has also presented research at the European Minority Influence Conference. Her primary research interests include cultural influences on psychological contracts, devil's advocacy, and extrarole behaviors. Her recent research examines the role of individual differences in motivation in dual-task environments.

    Bert Overlaet received his PhD in psychology in 1985 with a study on small group communication. He worked for 14 years at the Department of Work and Organizational Psychology at the Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium. His research and teaching focused on group dynamics, communication, and distributive justice. For 3 years he was management trainer in industry and works since 1988 as a freelance management consultant. Projects focus on management development, teambuilding, improvement of work systems, and crisis management. Since 1993, he is a full-time faculty member of the OB-group of the Department of Applied Economic Sciences. He teaches the Organization Theory and Organization Behavior classes in the MBA program and Philosophy of Science in the doctoral program. Present research interests include organizational knowledge and learning, membership processes, culture studies, and unconscious processes in organizations.

    Simon Peel is a Lecturer in Management and International Business at Massey University, Albany Campus, in Auckland, New Zealand. He has also taught at the University of Auckland and Auckland University of Technology. His teaching has been in the areas of management and organization, human resource management, and organizational behavior. He is currently on the editorial board of the Journal of Organizational Behavior His primary and present research is into issues surrounding the management of contractors. Other research interests include psychological contracts, performance appraisal, and organizational justice.

    Denise M. Rousseau is H. J. Heinz II Professor of Organizational Behavior and Public Policy at Carnegie Mellon University, jointly in the Heinz School of Public Policy and Management and in the Graduate School of Industrial Administration. A graduate of the University of California at Berkeley, she has been a faculty member at Northwestern University, the University of Michigan, and the Naval Postgraduate School (Monterey) and visiting faculty at Renmin University (Beijing), Chulalongkorn University (Bangkok), and Nanyang Technological University (Singapore). Her research, which addresses the changing psychological contract at work, has appeared in academic journals such as the Journal of Applied Psychology, Academy of Management Review, Academy of Management Journal, Journal of Organizational Behavior, and Administrative Science Quarterly. Her books include Psychological Contracts in Organizations: Understanding Written and Unwritten Agreements, which won the Academy of Management's best book award in 1996; the Trends in Organizational Behavior Series with Cary Cooper; Developing an Interdisciplinary Science of Organizations with Karlene Roberts and Charles Hulin; The Boundaryless Career with Michael Arthur; and Relational Wealth with Carrie Leana. She is a Fellow in the American Psychological Association, the Society for Industrial/Organizational Psychology, and the Academy of Management and is editor-in-chief of Journal of Organizational Behavior.

    René Schalk is currently Assistant Professor of Work and Organizational Psychology at Tilburg University in the Netherlands. He has also worked at Utrecht Business School, Tilburg Institute for Academic Studies, and Nijmegen University, from which he earned his PhD in social and organizational psychology. His research focuses on the issues of organizational psychology, personnel assessment and selection, quality of work, stress and health, motivation and commitment, and employee-organization linkages, with a special focus on the psychological contract, international differences, and (virtual) teamwork. He is a consulting editor for Journal of Organizational Behavior, and his books (in Dutch) include Determinants of Frequent Short-Term Absenteeism and Older Employees in a Changing World. Among the English-language journals in which he has published articles are Journal of Organizational Behavior, International Journal of Selection and Assessment, Leadership and Organization Development Journal, Journal of Social Behavior and Personality, and European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology.

    Luc Sels is Associate Professor of Human Resource Management at the Department of Applied Economics of the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven in Belgium. After receiving his PhD in the Social Sciences in 1995, he served as Project Manager at the Higher Institute of Labor Studies, an institute specialized in research-based consultancy and contract research. He joined the Applied Economics Department of the University of Leuven in 1996. His primary substantive research interests center around developments in human resource management and the analysis of organizational transformation. He has published international articles on the diffusion of innovative organizational practices, trends regarding the nature of the employment relationship in European countries , and social systems theory. His current research deals with the salary policy of Belgian companies, new tendencies in numerical and temporal flexibility, emic features of Belgian psychological contracts, human resource management in small and medium-sized companies, and training investment policy.

    Snehal Shah is a PhD student at Carnegie Mellon University. Her research has primarily focused on different aspects of understanding organizational change. Specifically, she has looked at the impact of managerial factors on employees’ reactions to organizational changes such as empowerment. Her PhD thesis, which is a combination of field and experimental research, attempts to study the role of attributions and social accounts in the context of organizational change in general and managerial directives in particular. Her research also includes published work in the area of psychological contracts. Her articles coauthored with Professor Denise Rousseau have appeared in Journal of Applied Psychology and Journal of Organizational Behavior, among others.

    Mei Ling Tan is a doctoral student in the Division of Strategy, Management and Organization at the Nanyang Business School in Singapore. She holds a first-class honors bachelor's degree in accounting, and a Master of Business (with a special concentration in organizational behavior). Her current research interests include the management of technicians and paraprofessionals, psychological contracting, and workforce diversity. Her papers on psychological contracting in Singapore and the mediating effects of trust on guanxi in Chinese business ventures have been presented at the Academy of Management meetings and the American Sociological Association conference. Her most current research examines the psychological contracts of information technology professionals and the effects of status inconsistencies on workplace attitudes and performance of foreign paraprofessionals.

    Catherine H. Tinsley received her PhD from Northwestern University and is currently Assistant Professor at Georgetown University. She specializes in the comparative analysis of conflict resolution across cultures. Her current research focuses on understanding conflict in the Chinese culture, new approaches to the study of culture in organizational psychology, and comparative models of conflict resolution in Japan, Germany, and the United States.

    Inge Van den Brande studied at the Catholic University of Leuven, where she received her licenciate in Applied Economics. In 1995, she joined the Applied Economics Department of the Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium, as research and teaching assistant in the OB-group. Her doctoral research is about psychological contracts in Flanders, Belgium. In particular, she works on the operationalization of different types of psychological contracts in Flanders and on the role of formal contracts and HR policies in understanding these different types of psychological contracts.

    Patricia D. Witherspoon is Chair of the Department of Communication Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. She teaches and conducts research in the areas of organizational leadership, organizational change, and the improvement of internal communication in large organizations. She has been Visiting Professor in the Graduate School of Business and Leadership at ITESM, Monterrey Campus (Monterrey Institute of Technology). Her most recent book is titled Communicating Leadership: An Organizational Perspective (1997).

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