Individuals hold central beliefs about two broad aspects of work. First, they have beliefs regarding how they ought to behave in work-relevant contexts (working hard, acting with integrity, respecting others). Second, they have preferences regarding what the work environment will provide for them (a challenging job, high pay). Although authors have usually focused on one or the other of these different approaches to work values, they are, in fact, related. Work values defined as generalized beliefs about modes of conduct at work form a primary component of the self-schema, the ought self, whereas work preferences compose a part of the desired self. Self-relevant beliefs tend to be the most deeply held and influential of cognitions, and thus values are stable and central beliefs, having powerful ...

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