Linkage research identifies the relationship between employee perceptions of the work environment and objective measures of business performance (e.g., productivity) and other relevant organizational outcomes (e.g., customer satisfaction). Workplace perceptions are typically gathered through employee surveys, and measures of business performance are selected on the basis of what outcomes are relevant to the firm’s strategy.

Linkage research is relevant from two perspectives. First, scholars are interested in addressing the long-standing assumption of the relationship between an organization’s climate and its effectiveness. This pursuit has evolved alongside a more general interest in understanding the origins of competitive advantage in human capital. Second, and from a more functional perspective, practitioners seek ways to demonstrate the efficacy of survey-based action planning efforts for improved organizational performance and to help ...

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