Testing Proximal Withdrawal States with an Interaction Model



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Current thesis project evaluates some of the assumptions by Hom, Mitchell, Lee, and Griffeth's (2012) Proximal Withdrawal States Theory (PWST). Hom et al. (2012) describe four cognitive states that may lead employees to either participate or withdraw from organizations; these are formed based on two factors: Perceived Control and Preferences to Stay or Leave. However, it remains unclear whether PWS come from such factors stated by Hom et al. (2012); and whether such factors lead to employee withdrawal. An Exploratory Factor Analysis (EFA) and a Confirmatory Factor Analysis (CFA) were used to develop reliable measures of preferences to stay or leave and perceived behavioral control. Also, linear and multinomial regression analyses were used to investigate whether preferences to stay or leave, internal perceived control and external perceived control; interacted to predict self-selected PWS and withdrawal outcomes (e.g., job search and turnover intentions). The EFA and CFA supported a three-factor structure but highlighted the consideration of a four-factor structure. Moreover, linear and multinomial regression analysis indicated how preferences to stay or leave; internal perceived control and external perceived control did not interact to predict self-selected PWS, nor they interacted to predict withdrawal outcomes. In sum, current findings show how future research must replicate my findings utilizing an accurate conceptualization of control or perhaps implementing a person-center analytic approach to further evaluate Hom et al.'s (2012) PWST. Moreover, these findings lead researchers questioning if, Hom et al.'s (2012) PWST (specifically their conceptualization of control) in truth, is accurate, valid and reliable to evaluate further. And lastly, if Hom et al.'s (2012) PWST appropriately assessed the construct of control, there needs to be an empirical evaluation of how PWS arise and if they lead to withdrawal outcomes.