This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

Newcomers’ Trait Affectivity and Social Assimilation in Organizations




Li, Hairong

Type of Degree

Master's Thesis




Becoming assimilated into the organizational social environment is critical and challenging to newcomers. This study examined whether newcomers’ trait positive affectivity (PA) and negative affectivity (NA) could predict social assimilation through proactive relationship building behaviors (i.e., general socializing, relationship building with boss, and networking). Using a three-wave survey design, data was collected from 289 newcomers from three organizations in China. A process model was tested examining whether PA/NA could predict newcomers’ relationship building behaviors, which in turn are related to their social assimilation outcomes in organizations (i.e., social integration& affective organizational commitment) during the first three-month post-entry. SEM results showed that newcomers’ trait PA was positively related to, whereas NA did not show significant relationships with the three dimensions of relationship building behavior. Among these three dimensions, general socializing, was found to be positively associated with newcomer socialization outcomes (i.e., social integration and affective organizational commitment). That is, general socializing mediated the relationships between PA and social integration and affective organization commitment. However, no significant relationship was found between relationship building with boss/networking and newcomer social assimilation outcomes. Theoretical implications, limitations, future research directions, and practical implications were discussed.