Three Components of an Attitude
Marten van der Zee, Student (University), Netherlands
Stephen P. Robbins and Timothy A. Judge, in their book 'Organizational Behavior' define an attitude as a predisposition or a tendency to respond positively or negatively towards a certain idea, object, person, or situation.
According to them, attitudes are complex and contain three components:
1. Cognition: this is the judgement, for example: 'my chef gave my colleague the promotion but I deserved it more'. It's the component of an attitude that is a description of something or a believe that something is what it is. This does NOT lead to actual behavior.
2. Affect: This is the feeling or emotion, for example: I hate my chef!'. Affect CAN lead to actual behavior.
3. Behavior: this is the actual action, for example: I am looking for another job and I told everyone, even my boss'.
To get a better understanding on the complexity of attitudes and their relation to behavior you need to keep these three components in mind.