Business Studies

The team project is a research project designed to answer one of two questions:

  • ·  What causes employees to be satisfied with their jobs?
  • ·  What causes employees to remain committed to their organizations?


Part I – Hypotheses Development

In this first phase of the project, your team will develop hypotheses about what causes employees to have high or low levels of satisfaction or organizational commitment (depending on which question your team is assigned). Each team should conduct in-depth interviews with at least three (3) people who are as different from one another as possible in terms of age, gender, race, work background, and national origin. The specific questions you use will be left up to you. The only criterion for question development is that the questions must be open-ended and should explore the interview subjects’ beliefs about what fosters job satisfaction or commitment. For example, one of your questions might be “When you think about a time when you were really committed (or not committed) to your organization, what factors do you feel contributed to such commitment levels?” or “When you think about times when you were most satisfied (or dissatisfied) at your job, what factors contributed to that level of satisfaction?” NOTE: This is an exploration. As such, you should use open-ended questions that will allow your interviewees to elaborate on their answers. Let them tell you what’s important. Do not “lead” them or provide these concepts for them.

Once your interviews are completed, your team will condense the most interesting themes into specific predictions (hypotheses) that can be tested with data. Each project should include exactly two (2) hypotheses, phrased something like this: “The amount of decision-making on the job will be positively related to organizational commitment” or this: “Job stress will be negatively related to job satisfaction.” Your hypothesis should use concepts that we discuss in class but may go beyond those as well. Although more than one concept may come up in your interviews, each hypothesis should contain only one concept as the independent (predictor) variable. Other than that, feel free to focus on concepts that interest you and might interest your classmates.

The following are examples of two hypotheses that predict job satisfaction. In the example below, “job stress” and “worker control” are the independent variables and job satisfaction is the dependent variable.


H1: Job stress will be negatively related to job satisfaction.   ( – )


Job Stress  ——à Job satisfaction


H2: Worker control will be positively related to job satisfaction.

 ( + )

Worker Control ———à Job Satisfaction

Part I Deliverable: Teams will turn in a Word document containing the following:

  1. A general description of your three interview participants (e.g., where they work, how long they’ve worked, age, race, gender, national origin).
  2. The question(s) asked in the interview
  3. Verbatim highlights of the interviewees’ responses – use quotation marks please
  4. Each hypothesis stated and expressed in diagram form (i.e., your predictor in a box with an arrow flowing into your dependent variable). Follow the examples presented above.


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