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Exploring Community Psychology Value Congruence in Academic Settings

Exploring Community Psychology Value Congruence in Academic Settings by  Olya Glantsman and Leonard Jason

Author(s): Olya Glantsman and Leonard Jason

Abstract:

This study focused on the relationship of value congruence between the individuals who belong to the field of Community Psychology and their workplace in relation to the work-related outcomes in an academic setting such as job satisfaction, organizational commitment, and willingness to recommend one’s workplace. 735 academic members of SCRA were identified and sent an email requesting their participation in this study. Results showed that departments rated higher on community psychology values had a greater number of faculty possessing similar values employed in those departments. In addition, better value fit predicted higher job satisfaction scores and higher organizational commitment scores, as well as a stronger willingness to recommend the department as a good place to work. At the same time, results provided a better understanding of the concepts of job satisfaction and organizational commitment in the academic settings. Furthermore, the findings highlighted the importance of values in relation to “organizational culture” beyond those strictly related to work/job.


Article:

Download the PDF version to access complete article, including Tables and Figures. 

 

Community Psychology

The roots of Community Psychology are in different parts of the world, while the field’s rapid growth spurt occurred in the US during the 20th century. The context of the 1960’s played a major role on the way the field has been shaped. While the antecedents of Community Psychology vary, most community psychologists agree that the field can be best defined by its values (Kloos, Hill, Thomas, Wandersman, Elias, & Dalton, 2012; Moritsugu, Duffy, Vera,& Wong, 2019). According to Kloos et al. (2012), US-centric values that guide the field include “individual and family wellness, sense of community, respect for human diversity, social justice, empowerment and citizen participation, collaboration and community strength, and empirical grounding” (p. 26). Similarly, Jason, Glantsman, O’Brien, and Ramian (2019) list respect for diversity, active citizen participation, grounding in research and evaluation, interdisciplinary collaboration, sense of community, empowerment, policy, promotion of wellness as important principles that shape and drive the field. Jason et al. (2019) also suggest that the field has three recurring themes: prevention, social justice, and an ecological understanding of people within their environments.     

 

In 2009, Community Psychology values were examined through a survey completed by the attendees of the Society for Community Research and Action (SCRA) Biennial Conference. Specifically, the conference attendees were provided with a survey asking them to identify top three values of Community Psychology that drive their research and teaching. This examination yielded fourteen highly rated Community Psychology values including: (1) social justice, (2) respect for diversity, (3) empowerment, (4) collaboration, (5) ecological perspective, (6) empirical grounding, (7) sense of community, (8) strength-based approach, (9) citizen participation, (10) prevention, (11) working with marginalized populations, (12) action research, (13) second order change, and (14) program efficacy.

 

Community Psychology is a relatively new field, having been established in the US in the 1960s. As of December 2019, there were over 1,200 members of the Society for Community Research as Action, the field’s professional organization. Practitioners make up a large group of these members. There are currently 18 undergraduate, 19 Masters, and 30 Doctoral programs related to Community Psychology offered in the US (SCRA, 2019). However, the need to expand the field has been highlighted in numerous journal articles and conference presentations. One way to do this is by having more Community Psychology faculty in as many psychology departments of colleges and universities as possible, thereby allowing departments to create and offer Community Psychology courses and programs to train those interested in both academia and practice. This will allow for a more diverse training with a focus on the ecological perspective, preventative approach, and social justice orientation (Jason et al. 2019). However, the question is, when a faculty member joins a department that has little or no Community Psychology faculty representation, will that individual be satisfied with and committed to his or her workplace? If not, the individual is more likely to leave, which means the department will not have representatives of the field or offer courses in Community Psychology and, thus, will not attract potential Community Psychology faculty and students. Thus, it is necessary to explore whether the make-up of the department affects the current and perhaps even potential faculty who will train the future generations of community psychologists, both academics and practitioners. One way to measure the effects of the departmental values (i.e., environment) on the faculty (i.e., individual) is to use the Person-Environment Fit measure that looks at the fit between the person’s values and the values of the setting they are in.

 

Person-Environment (P-E) and Person-Organization (P-O) Fit

According to Person-Environment (P-E) Fit Theory, individuals are naturally drawn to settings that reflect components of their personalities, including values, which are relatively stable systems (Jin & Rounds, 2012; Lusk & Oliver, 1974) and which may shape and influences one’s behavior (England, 1967; Rokeach, 1973). Additionally, when there is compatibility between one’s personality characteristics and his or her situation, an individual tends to experience more positive affect such as happiness, joy, enjoyment, and pleasure, and less negative affect such as depression, unhappiness, frustration, anger, and worry (Diener, Larson, & Emmons, 1984).

 

Compatibility between one’s personality characteristics and his or her setting may also be translated to the workplace in a form of Person-Organization (P-O) Fit (Amos & Weathingtin, 2008). Cable and Judge (1996) suggested that potential employees’ perception of fit depends on the match between their perceptions of values of the organization and their own values. When such a match between employees' and an organization values exists, the values are said to be congruent. An individual’s fit (i.e., congruence) with a work environment has been shown to affect work-related attitudes and behaviors (Boxx, Odom, & Dunn, 1991; Ren & Hamann, 2015; Saks & Ashforth, 1997).

 

According to Schneider’s (1987) Attraction-Selection-Attrition (ASA) framework, value congruence is related to the type of organization an individual will choose (i.e., Attraction), get hired by (i.e., Selection), and remain at (i.e., Attrition). Specifically, Schneider (1987) suggested that individuals may be inclined to choose an organization whose goals, culture, structure, and processes match their personality. Furthermore, the author suggested that individuals will be selected by the organization based on the set of specific characteristics of those individuals that are perceived as desirable by the organization (i.e., recruiters, employers). Finally, according to Schneider (1987), individuals who do not fit a work environment are more likely to leave it.

 

When individuals seek employment, they recognize an organizational culture (i.e., characteristics such as what the organization rewards, supports, and expects) and use these characteristics to choose an organization whose goals, culture, structure, and processes match their personality (Schneider, 1987). Thus, individuals try to find a match between their personal values and the values of the institutions in which they choose to work (Chatman, 1989, 1991; Judge & Bretz, 1992; Tom, 1971). Additionally, those individuals who do not perceive value congruence with their organization are at a higher risk of turnover (Amos & Weathington, 2008; Cable & Judge, 1996; O’Reilly, Chatman, & Caldwell, 1991; Ren & Hamann, 2015).

 

Job Satisfaction and Commitment

Furthermore, an individual’s fit with a work environment has been shown to affect individual characteristics, such as work-related attitudes and behaviors (e.g., job satisfaction and organizational commitment) (Boxx et al., 1991; Saks & Ashforth, 1997). Job satisfaction includes employee feelings about both intrinsic and extrinsic elements of his or her job (Howard & Frink, 1996). Job satisfaction measures indicate the employees’ affective responses to their job (i.e., the extent to which individuals like or are satisfied with versus dislike or are dissatisfied with their jobs). Organizational commitment includes believing in and accepting the goals and values of the organization one is a part of, a willingness to exert significant effort on behalf of the organization, as well as a strong desire to stay a member of an organization (Beasley & Jason, 2015; Meyer & Herscovitch, 2001). Typically, measures of organizational commitment require employees to respond to statements or questions that represent their beliefs and attitudes about their relationship with the organization for which they work (Fields, 2002).

 

Therefore, when it comes to workplace congruence, individuals tend to report being more satisfied with and committed to work settings that match their own values and those individuals who are more satisfied with and are more committed to the organizations tend to perform better, which in turn, increases the organization’s effectiveness (Adkins, Ravlin, & Meglino, 1996; Amos & Weathingtin, 2008; Arciniega & Gonzalez, 2005; Bretz & Judge, 1993; Cable & Judge, 1996; Chatman, 1989, 1991; Kristof, 1996; Mathieu & Zajac, 1990; Meglino, Ravlin, & Adkins 1989; O’Reilly, et al. 1991; Reb & Hamann, 2015; Verquer, Beehr, & Wagner, 2003).

 

Rationale

While much work on organizations focuses on performance and profitability ideals within an organizational context, the community psychology tenet, through its focus on well-being and psychological needs of people, can bring a humanistic perspective into the study of organizations, including academic institutions (Boyd & Angelique, 2002). Given the value-driven nature of the field of Community Psychology (Fryer, 2008), scholars found a need to expand traditional conceptualization to examine how Community Psychology values influence individuals who belong to the professional organization of the field and who work in academia. Additionally, it is important to examine whether the ASA framework translates to academia in relation to specific values. Thus, if the values of the organization (i.e., university/college department) match those of the individual (e.g., community psychologists), the person may be more likely to report higher satisfaction and higher commitment to his or her job. Specifically, community psychologists within an academic setting might be more satisfied with their jobs, as well as be more committed to their workplace, if they believe there is a better match between their own values and the values of their department. In turn, high value congruence with the workplace might also be positively related to positive organizational outcomes, such as better performance. Finally, because many community psychologists spend at least part of their life within an academic setting, it is important to study the construct of Community Psychology value congruence that explores the relationship between faculty and their departments in academic settings.

 

Thus, this study focuses on the relationship of value congruence between individuals in the field of Community Psychology and their workplace (i.e., department) in relation to the work-related outcomes in an academic setting (i.e., job satisfaction, organizational commitment, and willingness to recommend one’s workplace. We hypothesized that (1) departments that will be rated higher on the Community Psychology Values survey will have a higher number of faculty who report stronger Community Psychology values, (2) Participants who report better scores on the Community Psychology Person-Organization Fit (CPV P-O Fit) survey will report higher scores on the Job Satisfaction and on the Organizational Commitment scales and will report a stronger willingness to recommend their department as a good place to work.

 

Method

Research Participants & Procedure

Participants

This study focused on those who hold a professional position (i.e., faculty and staff) in academia. The criteria for inclusion in the study required membership to the professional organization Society for Community Research and Action, and currently working and/or teaching at a higher education institution in the United States. Those participants who did not meet the criteria of being an academic or residing in the U.S. were excluded.

 

The final sample consisted of 217 participants. The majority of participants (70.2%) were White, 9.6% were Black or African Americans, 9.6% were Hispanic/Latino/Latina, 5.1% were Asian, and 5.1% were reported to be other. The majority of participants were married (65.7%), 22.2% were single/never married, 8.6% were divorced and 1% was separated.

 

Procedures

In the fall of 2011, we obtained a list of all members of SCRA through the SCRA’s website to help identify a pool of faculty from which to sample.  Names of 1,357 members of the Society for Community Psychology Research and Action were identified. Those individuals whose affiliation was clearly identified as non-academic or international were excluded from search (N = 64). The researchers were able to obtain 735 emails.

 

The total number of the Society for Community Research and Action members who responded to the survey was 217, which is a return rate of 32% and was 18% of the total SCRA members that year. Twenty-two surveys (10% of the total surveys returned) were excluded because the participants did not meet the criteria of being an academic. Thirty-one surveys (14%) were incomplete and, thus, were not used in all analyses. The final sample consisted of 107 females and 88 males, which brought the return rate down to 27%, though it is unclear how many of the non-responders were academics and how many were not. The mean age of our sample was 44.09 years (SD = 3).

 

Each participant was contacted via email. The email included an introduction from the researchers, a brief description of the study, and a link to study questionnaires. In addition, in the email, the researchers informed all potential participants that their participation was completely voluntary and that individual responses were going to be held in strict anonymity. Clicking on the survey link took the participant to the survey sharing website (limeservice.com). The last item on the survey asked the participants to provide the researchers with contact information of any additional individuals who might be interested in participating in this study.

 

After initial contact, 49 emails were returned indicating a non-existent account, eight individuals identified themselves as non-academics, and one person asked not to be contacted again. Forty-three participants contacted the researchers either via email or in person indicating that they have completed the survey. At least two weeks following the initial contact, the remaining 634 individuals were sent a reminder email.

 

Measures

The first portion of the survey collected individuals’ demographic information for  217 participants. Participants were asked to identify their sex, age, ethnicity, marital status, and highest degree earned. In addition, they were asked to what extent they identified with being a Community Psychologist, whether or not they hold a Community Psychology degree, to what extent they are involved with the Society for Community Research and Action, whether they have taught at least one Community Psychology course in the past three academic years, their employment status (i.e., full vs. part-time), how many jobs in an academic setting they held since receiving their graduate degree, their tenure at the current position, the type of institution they are a part of (i.e., private faith-based, private, public, community/junior college, four-year undergraduate institution, college/university with graduate programs, professional school, and other), the type of college their department is a part of, the type of department they are a member of, and the types of degrees in Community Psychology offered by the department (i.e., none, BA, MA, PhD, other).

The Community Psychology Values Person-Organization Fit Survey

Participants also completed the Community Psychology Values Person-Organization Fit (CPV P-O Fit) survey, specifically designed for this study. The CPV P-O Fit survey measured how individuals rated themselves (i.e., individual value ratings) and their department (i.e., departmental value ratings) on a number of Community Psychology values. Specifically, the participants were provided a list of 14 Community Psychology values and were asked to rate themselves and their department on such values. The Community Psychology values included: (1) social justice, (2) respect for diversity, (3) empowerment, (4) collaboration, (5) ecological perspective, (6) empirical grounding, (7) sense of community, (8) strength-based approach, (9) citizen participation, (10) prevention, (11) working with marginalized populations, (12) action research, (13) second order change, and (14) program efficacy. As stated previously, these particular values were selected on the basis of responses to an open-ended survey asking the participants to identify the top three values of Community Psychology that influence their research and teaching. The survey was given to the attendees of the Society for Community Research and Action (SCRA) Biennial 2009.

 

To calculate value congruence, for each value item (e.g., social justice, respect for diversity, etc.), the individual value rating was subtracted from the departmental value rating. Absolute values of these scores were calculated and summed up. The value congruence between a participant and department was assessed. Higher scores on CPV P-O Fit survey indicated greater distance from zero and thus, less fit.

 

In order to test the relationship between ratings of the department on the Community Psychology values and the number of faculty who hold similar values, a portion of the CPV P-O Fit survey that describes value makeup of the participant’s department was used. Participants were asked to answer this question: “In your opinion, what percentage of the members of your department will score high on the values you have used earlier to rate your department?” Responses could range from “0%” to “100%.”

 

It needs to be noted that level of CPV P-O Fit was a measure of distance, with higher scores representing greater distance between one’s own values and the values of the department (i.e., worse fit) and lower scores representing smaller distance between one’s own values and the values of the department (i.e., better fit). Cronbach's alphas for the 14 personal and 14 departmental values items of the CPV P-O Fit survey were .76 and .91 respectively.

 

Job Satisfaction Survey

The Michigan Organizational Assessment Questionnaire (MOAQ) (Cammann, Fichman, Jenkins, & Klesh, 1983) was used to measure general job satisfaction. The MOAQ measures the perceptions of organizational members. We replaced the word “organization” with “department” given that the authors have explicitly stated that the term “organization” could be replaced with a more appropriate term. Instead of leaving a space for the participant to insert an organization’s name, the phrase “your college/university” was used. For this study, the three-item subscale of the MOAQ was selected to measure satisfaction with the social dimensions of one’s job and organization. Satisfaction was rated on a 7-point Likert-type scale (1 = strongly disagree; 7 = strongly agree). Sample items included: All in all, I am satisfied with my job; In general, I don’t like my job (R); and In general, I like working here. For scoring purposes, participants’ responses to all of the items within a satisfaction scale were averaged to yield an overall score. Items denoted with (R) were reverse-coded (e.g., 1 = 7; 7 = 1) before averaging the overall score. Internal consistency (alpha) for the three-item subscale of the MOAQ was .77 (Cammann, et al., 1983) and ranged from 0.67 to 0.95 (Hochwarter, Perrewe, Ferris, Brymer, 1999; McFarlin & Rice, 1992; McLain, 1995; Sanchez & Brock, 1996; Siegall & McDonald, 1995). The subscale of the Michigan Organizational Assessment Questionnaire that measures satisfaction with the social dimensions of one’s job and organization consisted of three items and appeared to have good internal consistency, alpha = .91.

 

Commitment Survey

A portion of The TCM Employee Commitment Survey (Meyer & Allen, 1997; 2004) was used to assess participants’ organizational commitment. The TCM Employee Commitment Survey measures three forms of employee commitment to an organization: (1) affective commitment (based on desire), (2) normative commitment (based on obligation), and (3) continuance commitment (based on cost) (Meyer & Allen, 1997). The three scales of the survey, the Affective Commitment scale (ACS), the Normative Commitment scale (NCS) and the Continuance Commitment scale (CCS) are well-validated. Specifically, according to Allen and Meyer (1990), ACS “correlated positively with six different types of organizational socialization programs and negatively with having an innovative role orientation within the first 6 months of entering an organization” (as cited in Fields, 2002, p.5). Given that we were interested in organizational commitment we used only the Affective Commitment scale of the survey as it measures an individual’s desire to stay in an organization rather than his or her obligation to stay. The revised version of the affective commitment scale includes six items. Commitment was rated on a 7-point Likert-type scale (1 = strongly disagree; 7 = strongly agree). Sample items included: I would be very happy to spend the rest of my career with this organization, I really feel as if this organization’s problems are my own, I do not feel like ‘part of the family’ at my organization (R), I do not feel ‘emotionally attached’ to this organization (R), This organization has a great deal of personal meaning for me, and I do not feel strong sense of belonging to my organization (R). For scoring purposes, participants’ responses to all of the items within a commitment scale were averaged to yield an overall score. Items denoted with (R) were reversed and re-coded (e.g., 1 = 7; 7 = 1) before averaging the overall score. The final score could range in value from 1 to 7 with higher scores indicating stronger commitment. Prior research on the Affective Commitment scale (ACS) has ranged from 0.77 to 0.88 (Allen & Meyer, 1990; Cohen, 1996, 1999; Cohen & Kirchmeyer, 1995; Hackett, Bycio, & Hausdorf, 1994; Meyer & Allen, 1997; Meyer, Irving, & Allen, 1998; Somers, 1995; Somers & Birnbaum, 1998). In the current sample, the affective commitment subscale had good internal consistency, alpha = .89.

 

Willingness to Recommend

In addition, the participants were asked to indicate their willingness to recommend their department, assessed with the questions, “How likely would you be to recommend your department to your friends as a good place work?” Willingness to recommend was rated on a 5-point Likert-type scale (1 = not recommend; 5 = recommend strongly). Using the same question, Cable and Judge (1996) found that P-O fit perceptions significantly predicted participants’ willingness to recommend their department to others. In addition, Wanous and Colella (1989) found a large percentage of new job applicants were referred to the organization by current employees, and those individuals who were then hired showed better performance and lower turnover (as cited in Cable & Judge, 1996).

 

Statistical Analyses

To examine relationships among the variables of interest, Pearson product-moment correlations were computed.

 

Results

As indicated in Table 1, there were eleven significant correlations.  There was a moderate positive correlation between the level of department’s Community Psychology values and the willingness to recommend one’s department as a good place to work. There was a moderate negative correlation between the level of CPV P-O Fit and the willingness to recommend one’s department. In addition, there were moderate positive correlations between the willingness to recommend one’s department and the level of job satisfaction and the level of organizational commitment. In addition, there was a moderate negative correlation between the level of organizational commitment and the level of CPV P-O Fit . Additionally, there were moderate positive correlations between the level of organizational commitment and the level of department’s Community Psychology values and the level of job satisfaction.

Table 1 (please download the PDF version to access complete article, including tables and figures)

Furthermore, there was a strong, negative correlation between the level of the department’s Community Psychology values and the level of CPV P-O Fit. Increases in the level of the department’s Community Psychology values were correlated with increases in the level of Community Psychology values fit (i.e., a smaller difference between one’s own values and the values of the department).

 

Because of the strong correlation between the scores on the CPV P-O Fit survey and the department values, department values were not included in any regression examining value fit, as was originally proposed. Furthermore, from the theoretical perspective CPV P-O Fit was a better measure of one’s value fit than the departmental scores.

 

Regression Analyses

We conducted a linear regression to examine the first hypothesis, with the department’s values score (measured by a portion of the CPV P-O Fit survey) as the independent variable and the number of academic faculty with Community Psychology values as the outcome variable. Higher departmental scores on the CPV-PO-Fit survey [M = 3.54, SD = .76] predicted greater number of faculty possessing similar values [M = 58.23, SD = 24.29], Beta = .50, t(168) = 7.40, p < .001. The overall model fit was R2 = .25, F(1, 168) = 54.77, p < .001, indicating that about one quarter (25%) of the variance in the number of faculty in one’s department that possess similar values was explained by the department’s Community Psychology Values scores.

 

The second hypothesis explored how much of the observable variability in job satisfaction scores can be attributed to the level of CPV P-O Fit. A hierarchical linear regression model examined whether lower averaged difference scores on the CPV P-O Fit survey (i.e., better fit) predicted higher job satisfaction scores beyond personal Community Psychology values. Specifically, personal Community Psychology values scores and the scores for the value fit (i.e., the averaged difference between the personal values and the departmental values) were entered into the regression to examine how well this variable predicts satisfaction scores, while controlling for the level of personal values. Higher scores on the CPV P-O Fit survey [M = 1.08, SD = .71], predicted higher job satisfaction scores [M = 5.69, SD = 1.43]. About seven percent of the variability in job satisfaction was explained by the CPV P-O Fit, Beta = -.26, t(166) = -3.41, p < .05. The overall model fit was R2 = .07, F(2, 166) = 5.84, p < .05.

A hierarchical linear regression model was created to examine whether better fit, as measured by the CPV PO Fit survey (i.e., smaller averaged difference between the department and the individual), predicts higher organizational commitment scores beyond personal Community Psychology values. Better value fit, as measured by the CPV P-O Fit survey [M = 1.08, SD = .71], predicted higher organizational commitment scores [M = 4.38, SD = 1.40]. About 28% percent of the variability in organizational commitment was explained by the CPV P-O Fit, Beta = -1.05, t(166) = -7.98, p < .01. The overall model fit was R2 = .28, F(2, 166) = 31.84, p < .001.

 

The fourth hypothesis predicted that better fit, as measured by the CPV P-O Fit survey (i.e., smaller averaged difference between the department and the individual), will predict higher recommendation scores. Better fit, as measured by the CPV P-O Fit survey (M = 1.08, SD = .71) was a significant predictor of the likelihood of recommending one’s department as a good place to work, M = 3.78, SD = 1.14, Beta = -.44, t(163) = -6.35, p < .001. The overall model fit was R2 = .29, F(1, 163) = 40.38, p < .001. About 29% of variance in the willingness to recommend one’s department was explained by the scores on the CPV P-O Fit survey.

 

Discussion

 

The findings have important implications for the field of Community Psychology and particularly to those who practice in the field. Given that faculty members with similar values are attracted to departments with a higher number of individuals sharing their values, academic settings with little or no faculty members with Community Psychology values are less likely to attract Community Psychology faculty. These settings will thus have fewer individuals capable of teaching Community Psychology curriculum or disseminating Community Psychology values to such departments and practice competencies to their students. Furthermore, those members of SCRA who find themselves in academic settings which do not match their values will be less likely to recommend their workplace to colleagues, thus not attracting potential SCRA members to their departments. This, in turn, will hamper the department from increasing its level of Community Psychology values and, potentially, attracting more members of SCRA. Thus, based on these findings, those members of the SCRA who find themselves in academic settings with a low level of Community Psychology values might need additional support from other sources such as professional organizations (e.g., SCRA), in order to ensure that these individuals remain in such settings and raise awareness about the field. In particular, such organizations can provide support that emphasizes the value fit for those individuals beyond their workplace (e.g., SCRA councils and interest groups such as the Practice Council and the Council on Education, listserv, conferences, committees, etc.).

 

Additionally, the results suggested that the Attraction-Selection-Attrition (ASA) theory works with values of the field of Community Psychology. Departments rated higher on Community Psychology Values, as measured by the CPV P-O Fit survey, predicted greater number of faculty possessing similar values employed in one’s department. In addition, better value fit predicted higher job satisfaction scores and higher organizational commitment scores, as well as a stronger willingness to recommend their department as a good place to work. Findings further supported the positive relationship between value congruence and job satisfaction, organizational commitment, and willingness to recommend one’s workplace. The same set of issues regarding the fit is relevant to both applied as well as academic settings.

 

These findings suggested that the ASA theory, usually used in discussion of non-academic settings, translates to academic settings. In addition, these findings provide a better understanding of the concepts of job satisfaction and organizational commitment in academic settings. Findings also highlight the importance of values in relation to “organizational culture” beyond those strictly related to work/job.

 

Limitations

This study had several limitations. For instance, our conclusion about the study’s return rate was limited by the fact that it was not possible to obtain the contact information of every member of SCRA and not possible to identify those individuals who are currently employed in an academic setting. That is, there is a chance that some of the individuals who had neither responded to the survey nor contacted the researchers had been in non-academic settings and did not qualify for the study. Furthermore, those who are less satisfied with their workplace may have been more overwhelmed and less likely to notice or respond to emails. However, they may have been more likely to pay attention to emails regarding the values they share. Therefore, generalizability could have been compromised.

 

Future Directions

Previous research also suggested a relationship between length of time in an organization and Person-Organization Fit (Holland, 1985). For example, individuals with low tenure who had high value congruence had higher social satisfaction compared to those with low value congruence. There was little difference in satisfaction compared to those with high tenure (Adkins et al., 1996). This suggests that those individuals who are new to a workplace that does not share their values may be at a higher risk of social dissatisfaction compared to those who have been in the department longer. Future studies should examine the relationship between work adjustment and community psychologists in academia as well as applied settings. Furthermore, given that the duration of time one is in a setting may also impact job satisfaction, future research in this area should utilize a longitudinal design to provide further insight into satisfaction of community psychologists within an academic setting.

 

Additionally, future studies might explore a more comprehensive perspective on value congruence. For example, value fit between members of a department could have important implications for job satisfaction and organizational commitment. Previous research has indicated that value congruence in the workplace may be split into (1) values between co-workers and (2) supervisors. Though both types of value congruencies have been found to have an effect on the individual’s job outcomes, there is no research that explores the interaction of the different types of value congruencies within academia.

Moreover, future research should focus on exploring the difference between perceived versus actual values. Specifically, there may be a difference between the values that are publicly put out by the organization (e.g., mission statement) and those that are being implemented (e.g., faculty and stuff often participate in volunteer work in accordance with the value of giving back to the community).  The current study only focused on the values of the field of Community Psychology. In future research, competing values such as meritocracy, competition, self-reliance should be examined. Inclusion of such values (i.e., beyond Community Psychology values) may be a better predictor of job satisfaction and organizational commitment. Finally, future studies can focus on value congruence within non-academic settings. This will help us understand the unique needs for support for practitioners who have been trained in Community Psychology related fields as they join workforce. Specifically, how working in organizations that do not share Community Psychology values affects these individuals’ satisfaction and productivity.

 

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Table 1. Correlation matrix between measures of values and work related outcomes

Author(s)

Olya Glantsman and Leonard Jason Olya Glantsman and Leonard Jason

Olya Glantsman, is a senior professional lecturer at DePaul University and a director of the Undergraduate Concentration in Community Psychology and a co-coordinator of the M.S. in Community Psychology. Her research interests include cultural diversity, improving academic environments for students and faculty, community psychology values, and the teaching of psychology.

 

Leonard A. Jason, is currently a Professor of Psychology at DePaul University and the Director of the Center for Community Research. Jason is a former president of the Division of Community Psychology of the American Psychological Association. Jason has edited or written 30 books, and he has published over 800 articles and 100 book chapters. He has served on the editorial boards of ten psychological journals. Jason has served on review committees of the National Institutes of Health, and he has received over $46,500,000 in federal research grants.


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Keywords: value congruence, community psychology, values, job satisfaction, organizational commitment