The Effect of Socio-Affective Variables in the Relationship between Organizational Trust and Employee Turnover Intention
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The Effect of Socio-Affective Variables in the Relationship between Organizational Trust and Employee Turnover Intention

Authors: Paula A. Cruise, Carvell McLeary


Employee turnover leads to lowered productivity, decreased morale and work quality, and psychological effects associated with employee separation and replacement. Yet, it remains unknown why talented employees willingly withdraw from organizations. This uncertainty is worsened as studies; a) priorities organizational over individual predictors resulting in restriction in range in turnover measurement; b) focus on actual rather than intended turnover thereby limiting conceptual understanding of the turnover construct and its relationship with other variables and; c) produce inconsistent findings across cultures, contexts and industries despite a clear need for a unified perspective. The current study addressed these gaps by adopting the theory of planned behavior (TPB) framework to examine socio-cognitive factors in organizational trust and individual turnover intentions among bankers and energy employees in Jamaica. In a comparative study of n=369 [nbank= 264; male=57 (22.73%); nenergy =105; male =45 (42.86)], it was hypothesized that organizational trust was a predictor of employee turnover intention, and the effect of individual, group, cognitive and socio-affective variables varied across industry. Findings from structural equation modelling confirmed the hypothesis, with a model of both cognitive and socio-affective variables being a better fit [CMIN (χ2) = 800.067, df = 364, p ≤ .000; CFI = 0.950; RMSEA = 0.057 with 90% C.I. (0.052 - 0.062); PCLOSE = 0.016; PNFI = 0.818 in predicting turnover intention. The findings are discussed in relation to socio-cognitive components of trust models and predicting negative employee behaviors across cultures and industries.

Keywords: Context-specific organizational trust, cross-cultural psychology, theory of planned behavior, employee turnover intention.

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