Employee Attitude Surveys in Multinational Organizations

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Employee Attitude Surveys in Multinational Organizations
Anneke Zwart, Student (University), Netherlands

Globalization has resulted in an increasing amount of multinational organizations (MNOs). These multinationals are faced with many challenges, including the need of understanding and communicating with employees of various countries. Which is not an easy task...
The different nationalities in MNOs also leads to a new challenge when we are establishing Employee Attitude Surveys (EASes): we mus ensure “Conceptual Equivalence” across the various versions of the survey. Conceptual Equivalence means that each version of the survey has (must have) a similar meaning across different cultures in MNCs.
In establishing surveys that are "conceptually equivalent", language differences and other cultural differences are important factors that need to be considered. Conceptual Equivalence in EASes must not be underestimated. If equivalence is not realized, the conclusions about employees’ attitudes towards certain jobs will be incorrect; as a result, organizational changes based on the conclusions of nonequivalent surveys can be problematic, inefficient or harmful.

Source: Ryan, A.M., Chan, D., Ployhart, R.E. and Slade, L.A. (1999) “Employee Attitude Surveys in a Multinational Organization: Considering Language and Culture in Assessing Measurement Equivalence” Personnel Psychology Vol. 52 pp 37-58



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