This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

Empowerment and Organizational Climate: An Investigation of Mediating Effects on the Core-Self Evaluation, Job Satisfaction, and Organizational Commitment Relationship




Crawford, Alleah

Type of Degree



Nutrition and Food Science


Job satisfaction and organizational commitment have each been a central focus of human resources issues in hospitality for academicians and practitioners alike. These two concepts have been examined in the literature and support has been garnered for the strong relationship they share with each other (Knoop, 1995; Lam & Zhang, 2003; Rayton, 2006; Silva, 2006; Vandenberg & Lance, 1992) as well as other important organizational variables, including empowerment (Carless, 2004) and intention to quit (Allen & Meyer, 1996; Lum, Kervin, Clark, Reid & Sirola, 1998). One strong relationship that has been established throughout job satisfaction research is with one’s disposition, a natural inclination of mood or spirit. Core self-evaluation (CSE) as introduced by Judge, Locke, and Durham (1997) has received attention within the disposition literature. Core self-evaluation is defined as the basic assessment one makes about his/her abilities, competencies, and overall value (Judge et. al, 1997) and is a higher order trait comprised of self-esteem, locus of control, neuroticism, and self-efficacy. Core self-evaluation literature has supported a strong relationship with job satisfaction (Judge, 1998, 2000, 2005), however there is a lack of understanding as to what process links these variables. Can the work environment play a role in this relationship? Work environment factors, such as employee empowerment and organizational climate were included in this study as potential mediators in order to assess the work environment’s role in the core self-evaluation, job satisfaction relationship. Also, organizational commitment has not been included in the core self-evaluation literature. This study also sought to understand if any relationship existed between core self-evaluation and organizational commitment. The sample consisted of 152 quick-service restaurant employees of one franchise with different levels of restaurant experience, education, and responsibility. Findings from the study did support mediation of job satisfaction and core self-evaluation as well as organizational commitment and core self-evaluation. These findings begin to fill the gap in the literature and have supplied a base of information for academicians to build upon for further development not only of the core self-evaluation concept, but also in understanding the relative importance of the workplace environment.