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Title: An investigation into the management style of eastern-owned and western-owned organizations in Hong Kong & the respective employee satisfaction and commitment
Authors: Leung, Ching-fung Raymond
Degree: M.Phil.
Issue Date: 1999
Abstract: This study was carried out to explore the management style of the eastern-owned and the western-owned companies operating in Hong Kong; and to measure the employee outcomes under the respective management style. In addition, this study also attempts to find out which main variables (namely, job characteristics, paternalism, co-worker tie and supervisory tie) engender job satisfaction and organizational commitment among Hong Kong employees. Literature reviews that, due to cultural difference, eastern management style emphasizes a more paternalistic approach, whereas western management style adopts a more sophisticated human relations approach. The ultimate aim is to induce employee job satisfaction and organizational commitment, which have long been identified as factors to improve job performance. Since Hong Kong people ingrain with both eastern and western culture, it is interesting to see which management style and which main variables better predict satisfaction and commitment. A model was derived in part from the literature review, which identifies the eastern management style as paternalism, with paternalistic value (familial relationship) as the core characteristic; and, the western management as sophisticated human relations, with job characteristics as the core feature. In addition to such core features, that is, paternalistic value and job characteristics, relationship with co-worker and supervisors are expected to be the main determinant variables of satisfaction and commitment. Growth need strength and demographic characteristics such as gender, age, marital status, educational level, position and tenure in the company are also tested in the study as moderating variables across the model. Data were obtained from company interviews, general survey and in-depth survey from 3 case studying companies. The company interviews, with either HR managers or HR directors, were used to explore the HR policies of the eastern-owned and the western-owned companies and thus identified their management style. The general survey was used to measure the employee attitudes in both types of firms, and the case study survey provided both the general understanding of the employee outcomes for individual companies and the additional insight for further research. In accordance with the literature, the result indicates that eastern-owned companies operating in Hong Kong adopt a more paternalistic approach, whereas western-owned firms adopt a more sophisticated human relations approach. Employees in eastern-owned and western-owned also reported to experience a higher aspect of paternalistic value and job characteristics respectively. Job characteristics are found to positively predict both extrinsic and intrinsic and identification and loyalty commitment. Co-worker tie is found to positively predict extrinsic satisfaction and identification commitment. Paternalism and supervisory also show their positive prediction power in loyalty commitment. Interestingly, paternalism is discovered to have negative impact in intrinsic satisfaction and identification commitment in eastern-owned companies; but such impacts remain positive in western-owned companies. The growth need strength and demographic factors of individual employees are found to have no regular correlational pattern with either satisfaction and commitment. The research findings suggest to human resource professionals that employee satisfaction and commitment rely on company's HR policies rather than the growth need strength or demographic characteristics. In addition, the above main variables worth to take a closer look, as generally speaking, they show positive prediction power predicting employee job satisfaction and organizational commitment. Finally, several limitations to this research are noted. Since this study relied on self-report, response bias is likely to have taken place. This study also generates an interesting finding---the negative impact of paternalism on satisfaction and commitment in eastern-owned firms in Hong Kong---for further investigation.
Subjects: Industrial management -- China -- Hong Kong
Personnel management -- China -- Hong Kong
Job satisfaction -- China -- Hong Kong
Organizational commitment -- China -- Hong Kong
Organizational behavior -- China -- Hong Kong
Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations
Pages: vii, 114, [15] leaves : ill. ; 30 cm
Appears in Collections:Thesis

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