Perceptions of Organizational Justice in Global Teams on the Basis of Cultural Values

Martina Simone Weisser

Student thesis: Master thesis

Abstract

The research conducted in this thesis aims to add new insights on how perceptions of organizational justice differ in global teams on the basis of cultural values. On the basis of previous studies, this paper proposes a relationship between a global work context and perceptions of organizational justice, a relationship between a global work context and the extent to which individual cultural values differ from national cultural values, and a relationship between individual cultural values and perceptions of organizational justice, moderated by salary type and bonus type. The global work context has been regarded from three points of view: the type of global team, the degree of national diversity within this team and the experience of working abroad as a result of dispersion. Hofstedeā€™s cultural framework has been used to assess cultural values, mapping them on six dimensions: individualism versus collectivism, power distance, masculinity versus femininity, uncertainty avoidance, long-term versus short-term orientation and indulgence versus restraint. Perceptions of organizational justice have been regarded from three dimensions: perceptions of distributive justice, perceptions of procedural justice and perceptions of interactional justice.
A web-based survey has been launched in order to collect data from an international workforce. A non-probability sample and two company samples have been used and 241 usable answers have been obtained. The survey included measures to calculate individual cultural value scores and perceptions of distributive, procedural and interactional justice. Furthermore, demographic and company data have been collected, allowing for drawing conclusions on whether the respondents worked abroad or in their home countries, as well as for assessing the global team type respondents work in and the degree of internationality within these teams.
The results of the study supported the expectation that a global work context influences perceptions of organizational justice. However, only the dimensions of distributive and interactional justice and the components team internationality and working abroad yielded relevant results. Neither did team type show any causal relationship with any of the dimensions of organizational justice, nor did any of the components of a global work context show an influence on perceptions of procedural justice. When the extent to which individual cultural values differ from national cultural values has been examined, the results were consistent with the assumption that these differences are shaped by a global work context. Interestingly, the results of the study did not support the expectation that individual cultural values have an influence on perceptions of organizational justice, since only power distance and uncertainty avoidance resulted relevant for perceptions of interactional justice. These findings indicate that individual cultural values are weak predictors for perceptions of organizational justice. However, including the moderators salary type and bonus type resulted in significant interactions between moderators and individual cultural values. The most relevant finding was the moderating effect of salary type on the relationship between indulgence versus restraint on an individual level and perceptions of distributive justice. Auxiliary analyses have been conducted in order to assess the results for overall justice perceptions, i.e. a mean score of the three dimensions, which supported the validity of the named moderating effect. Additional auxiliary analyses have been conducted in order to further examine the relationship between national cultural values, a global work context and perceptions of organizational justice. The results have shown that team type, internationality of the team and working abroad have a moderating influence on the relationship between national cultural values and perceptions of organizational justice, but especially on perceptions of interactional justice.
Perceptions of organizational justice differ in global teams, but rather on the basis of national cultural values moderated by a global work context than on the basis of individual cultural values. Individual cultural values implicitly contain the effects of a global work context, since the extent to which they differ from national cultural values is influenced by a global work context. Individual cultural values account for variations in perceptions of organizational justice if they are moderated by salary type and bonus type. The research thus indicates the importance of a global work context and reward structures in the pursuit of positive perceptions of organizational justice, since they interact with the cultural values of employees.

EducationsMSc in Business, Language and Culture - Diversity and Change Management, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
LanguageEnglish
Publication date2017
Number of pages119
SupervisorsMinna Paunova