Relationships between beliefs, personality and behaviour at work

  • Richard Ford

    Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


    This study presents an investigation into the relationship between occupational beliefs, the occupational persona and occupational behaviour. The purpose of the study was to examine the empirical implications for the author's occupational belief system model of occupational choice and occupational behaviour. The theoretical conception of an occupational belief system is introduced as a model for the personal system of evaluations that individuals place on work. The occupational persona is defined as the expression of that part of the individual that he thinks he reveals publicly at work.

    The testing of the model necessitates the development of measures for the occupational persona, occupational beliefs and occupational behaviour. An instrument to measure the occupational persona was developed on a sample of kOk individuals and the data was analysed by a hierarchical factor analytic model with Factored Homogeneous Item Dimensions (FHIDs) as the basic unit of the factor analyses. A sharp structure of 7 factors emerged to describe the occupational persona. An index to measure occupational beliefs was deductively constructed from the theoretically based formulations of the author's occupational belief system. The work orientation concept is introduced as reflecting the beliefs an individual holds about work. Occupational behaviour was measured by career patterns, occupational choice and reasons for leaving jobs.

    A second sample of 422 individuals was used to explore the relationships between occupational beliefs, the occupational persona and occupational behaviour. In general, the data do not refute the central propositions of the theory which are that occupational behaviour, occupational beliefs and the occupational persona are all a function and a consequence of each other. However, demographic variables explained more of the occupational behaviour variance, and the author emphasizes the need for crossvalidation studies. The implications of the results for occupational choice theory, occupational guidance, work motivation theory, and organizational analysis are discussed.
    Date of AwardOct 1981
    Original languageEnglish
    Awarding Institution
    • Polytechnic of Wales

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