Antecedents and Outcomes of Organizational Commitment: A Study of Salespeople

Sager, Jeffrey K.; Johnston, Mark W.
March 1989
Journal of Personal Selling & Sales Management;Spring89, Vol. 9 Issue 1, p30
Academic Journal
Organizational commitment is a promising construct for sales force research because it encompasses positive traits, among them loyalty and involvement. The article examines a unidirectional network of relationships between a specified set of antecedents and organizational commitment and between organizational commitment and proposed outcomes-effort and performance. The variables and relationships were drawn from the theoretical and empirical literature dealing with organizational commitment and in particular studies commitment in the sales force. Organizational commitment is characterized by an individual's identifying with the organization's goals and values, a willingness to put forth effort for the organization and a desire to remain in the employ of the organization. Commitment is similar to motivation in that both constructs are related to effort. However, commitment infers an individual's willingness to put forth effort, while motivation concerns the means that the salesperson employs to produce effort. Motivation is a systematic behavior that is goal directed. The various theories of motivation, among them expectancy theory, attribution theory and inducements-contribution theory are concerned with explaining the system underlying goal-directed behavior.


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