SA Journal of Industrial Psychology - latest Issue
Volumes & issues
Volume 43, Issue 1, 2017
Source: SA Journal of Industrial Psychology 43, pp 1 –9 (2017) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/sajip.v43.1393More Less
Orientation: In order to ensure harmonious relationships in the workplace, work values of different generational cohorts need to be investigated and understood.
Research purpose: The purpose of this study was to investigate the work values of a South African sample from a generational perspective, in order to foster an understanding of the similarities and differences of different generational cohorts in terms of work values.
Motivation of the study: Understanding the work values of different generational cohorts could assist organisations to manage and retain human capital in an increasingly competitive environment. Furthermore, it could assist organisations to develop an advanced understanding of employee behaviour, which should inform conflict-resolution strategies to deal with reported conflict between different generational cohorts.
Research design, approach and method: The study was conducted within the positivist paradigm and was quantitative in nature. Data were gathered from 301 employees representing three different generational cohorts, namely the Baby Boomers, Generation X and Generation Y. A cross-sectional study was conducted, and data were collected once off by means of the Values Scale. The psychometric properties of the Values Scale have a reliability coefficient of 0.95, and the scale has been applied successfully in various iterations.
Main findings: The findings indicate statistically significant differences and similarities between the various generational cohorts in terms of work values. More specifically, similarities and differences between the various generational cohorts were observed with regard to the values of authority, creativity, risk and social interaction in the work context.
Practical/managerial implications: Organisations can use the findings of the study to strengthen employee interaction within the work environment. In addition, the findings can be used to inform retention and management strategies, in order to ensure harmonious relationships in the workplace.
Contribution/value-add: The study contributes to the literature on South African generational cohorts and work values.
Validating strengths use and deficit correction behaviour scales for South African first-year studentsSource: SA Journal of Industrial Psychology 43, pp 1 –12 (2017) http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/sajip.v43.1395More Less
Orientation: It is well known that the first year at university can be very challenging and stressful for students. While some students mainly depend on the university to assist them through this time, other students want to proactively manage this stressful period themselves by focusing on their strengths and developing in their areas of weakness. Two new scales measuring proactive strengths use and deficit correction behaviour have recently been developed for employees. However, the psychometric properties of these new scales have not yet been tested on first-year students in the South African context.
Research purpose: To examine the validity, measurement invariance and reliability of the proactive strengths use and deficit correction scales for South African first-year university students.
Motivation for the study: In order to cope in the demanding university environment, first-year university students need to develop and apply proactive strategies, including using their strengths and developing in their areas of weaknesses. Several studies have indicated that proactive behaviour, specifically strengths use and deficit correction behaviour, lead to favourable outcomes such as higher engagement, lower burnout and more life satisfaction. Therefore, it is important to validate scales that measure these constructs for first-year students.
Research design, approach and method: A cross-sectional research approach was used. A sample of South African first-year university students aged between 18 and 23 years (N = 776) was collected. The two scales were tested for their factor structure, measurement invariance, reliability, and convergent and criterion validity.
Main findings: A two-factor structure was found for the strengths use and deficit correction behaviour scales. Measurement invariance testing showed that the two scales were interpreted similarly by participants from different campuses and language groups. Cronbach’s alpha coefficients (α ≥ 0.70) indicated that both scales were reliable. In addition, the scales demonstrated convergent validity (comparing them with a general strengths use and proactive behaviour scale). Strengths use and deficit correction behaviour both predicted student burnout, student engagement and life satisfaction, with varying strengths of the relationships for strengths use and deficit correction behaviour.
Practical implications: Strengths use and deficit correction behaviour could enable students to manage study demands and enhance well-being. Students will experience favourable outcomes from proactively using strengths and developing their weaknesses, including reduced burnout and enhanced engagement and life satisfaction. Universities and lecturers can be informed, which allows them to develop support structures and provide students with opportunities to apply their strengths and develop their deficits.
Contribution/value-add: The present study adds to the limited research available on initiating proactive behaviour to use strengths and improve deficits for university students by validating two new scales. This could help in facilitating positive outcomes for first-year university students within the South African context.