An investigation of the effects of job complexity, ethnic origin and anomie on the job satisfaction of blue collar employees



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The purpose of this research was to determine the effects of job complexity, ethnic group membership and anomie on the need satisfaction of blue collar workers. In depth job analyses were employed to determine job level. The sample included 61 black, 48 white and 58 Chicano subjects (N = 167). Anomie was measured by the McClosky and Schaar (1965) anomie scale and job satisfaction was determined by a modified version of Porter's need satisfaction questionnaire. It was found that, in general, job satisfaction scores were not related to job complexity, anomie or ethnic group. Significant (p<.05) differences were found only for the esteem need category between subjects in high and low job complexity positions. Significant differences in fulfillment scores were observed across job complexity and in fulfillment and expectancy scores among ethnic groups. These results are interpreted as indicating that the range of levels within blue collar jobs in this study was not sufficient for significant differences in need satisfaction to appear. It was found that while significant differences in need fulfillment among job complexity levels existed a corresponding non-significant trend for expectancy scores to increase was also noted. This finding is interpreted in light of the balance theories of social psychology. The results comparing need satisfaction, fulfillment and expectancy scores among ethnic groups were evaluated in terms of the differences in each ethnic group's perceptions in the conmunity versus the research setting. The lack of significant differences between low and high anomie groups questions the use of anomie or alienation as a factor label in studies employing situational and biographical indices as independent measures. Areas worthy of additional investigation are presented.



Job satisfaction, Minorities, Employment, Anomy