Relationships among leader-member exchange, person-organization fit and work attitudes in Japanese and Korean organizations: Testing a cross-cultural moderating effect

Yuhee Jung, Norihiko Takeuchi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

18 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study examines a possible national culture difference in the moderating effect of leader-member exchange (LMX) on the relationship between person-organization (P-O) fit and work attitudes, including job satisfaction and organizational commitment, in Japan and Korea. Specifically, we use trait activation theory as a lens to explain the complementarities between P-O fit and LMX that may exert an influence on employees' work attitudes. We hypothesize that from the cross-cultural management perspective, such complementary effects would work in Japan where organizations encourage more decentralization and empowerment than those in Korea, which may enable supervisors in Japanese organizations to provide unambiguous reward expectancies for their immediate subordinates. Using samples of 138 Japanese and 144 Korean employees working for privately owned firms in Japan and Korea, we demonstrate that a significant three-way interaction of employees' P-O fit, LMX and a national culture difference (i.e. nationality) influences their work attitudes. Specifically, LMX moderated the positive relationships between P-O fit and both job satisfaction and organizational commitment for Japanese employees, tending to weaken them. For Korean employees, however, no such interactions were observed. The findings are used to discuss the applicability and generalizability of trait activation theory in East Asian cultures. In addition, suggestions are made regarding the discussion of HRM practices from a cross-vergence perspective. Limitations and directions for future research are also discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)23-46
Number of pages24
JournalInternational Journal of Human Resource Management
Volume25
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Jan 1

Keywords

  • Japan
  • Korea
  • leader-member exchange
  • person-organization fit
  • trait activation theory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Strategy and Management
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management
  • Management of Technology and Innovation

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