Personal and Organizational Determinants of Perceived Absence Norms
Human Relations. Vol 51. Issue 8. Year 1998
Posted: 28 May 2013
Date Written: Aug 1, 1997
A two-phase study employed a combination of qualitative and quantitative methodology to study absenteeism in a complex, hospital setting. The primary focus was to identify the bases of employees' beliefs about what is acceptable and expected in terms of absence behavior. Through a series of employee interviews, two different absence cultures were identified. We found evidence that employees' normative perceptions were influenced by their prior personal absence, and by the average level of absence within both their immediate work group and the absence culture to which they belonged. Perceived norms were also shown to predict future individual absence (total days absent) 1 year later. Theoretical and practical implications of this research were discussed.
Keywords: employee absenteeism, absence culture, group norms
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