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Exploring the exit, voice, loyalty, and neglect typology: The influence of job satisfaction, quality of alternatives, and investment size

Abstract

The current theory proposes that responses to dissatisfaction differ in constructiveness versus destructiveness and activity versus passivity, defining four categories of response: exit, voice, loyalty, and neglect. The manner in which employees react to job dissatisfaction is determined by three variables: overall job satisfaction; quality of job alternatives, and magnitude of investments in the job. This article presents a meta-analysis of the results of five studies in a program of research designed to test the current theory. Ten of 12 theory predictions received good support: Greater job satisfaction was associated with greater tendencies toward voice and loyalty, and with lesser exit and neglect. Superior alternatives were associated with greater tendencies toward exit and voice, and with lesser neglect. Greater investment size was associated with greater tendencies toward voice and loyalty, and with lesser neglect.

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Farrell, D., Rusbult, C.E. Exploring the exit, voice, loyalty, and neglect typology: The influence of job satisfaction, quality of alternatives, and investment size. Employ Respons Rights J 5, 201–218 (1992). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF01385048

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/BF01385048

Key Words

  • exit, voice, loyalty, and neglect
  • responses to job dissatisfaction
  • job commitment
  • employee retention