What is attribution theory? What are three determinants of attribution? What are its implications for explaining organizational behaviour? Attribution theory
A theory that explains how individuals pinpoint the causes of their own behaviour and that of others. People will believe others actions to be caused by internal or external factors based on three types of information: Distinctiveness, Consensus and Consistency. The attributions may not always accurate. For example, an executive with Capital Cities Communications/ABC who had a very positive relationship with his boss was not held responsible for profit problems in his district. The boss blame problem on the econonmy. Supervisors and employees who share perceptions and attitudes tends to evaluate each other highly. Supervisors and employees who do not share perceptions and attitudes are more likely to blame each other for performance problems. Kelleys proposed that individuals make attributions based on information given. Three determinants of attribution
Information regarding the extent to which other people behave in the same manner as the person being judged. For example, If lots of people find Amina attractive, consensus is high. If only Ali finds Amina attractive, consensus is low. High consensus is attributed to the stimulus (in the above example, to Amina), while low consensus is attributed to the person (in this case the person is Ali). Distinctiveness
Information regarding the extent to which other people behave in the same manner as the person being contexts. There is a low distinctiveness if an individual behaves similarly in all situations, and there exists a high distinctiveness when the person only shows the behaviour in particular situations. If the distinctiveness is high, one will attribute this behaviour more to the circumstance instead of person. For examples, Alfi is complimenting Muzammil’s work, if Alfi almost never compliments other people’s work, he shows high distinctiveness. But if he also compliments everybody’s work, this is low distinctiveness, and one will attribute the behaviour to the person. Consistency
Information regarding the extent to which other people behave in the same manner as the person being judged acts the same way at other times. Example: If Ariff is generous all the time, she shows high consistency. If Ariff is rarely generous or is generous only at specific times, perhaps around the holidays, she shows low consistency. High consistency is attributed to the person (Ariff is a generous person), while low consistency is attributed to the circumstance (the holidays make people generous). Essentials of Organizational Behaviour 10th edition. Stephen P. Robbins, Tim Judge . Publisher: Prentice Hall 2010 What are its implications for explaining organizational behaviour? The process by which persons interpret and pinpoint causes for their own personal and other's behaviour is the theory of attribution. In this motivational theory, a person always finds a way to explain things, he make inferences on why things or events occur. After explaining the events a person then predicts future events through his inferences. He wants to understand the reasons or causes behind behaviour of people and why events happen. It was first proposed by Fritz Heider in 1958 and further developed by Harold Kelly and Bernard Weiner. he attribution theory explains how individuals pinpoint the causes of their own behavior and that of other people. There are two sources of "power" that human beings believe are responsible for the outcome of their own actions. One source is internal; we normally relate success and elements under our control as an internal attribution. The second source is external: we normally relate failure and elements out of our control as an external attribution. Success in the workplace can simultaneously alternate between internal and external. You might have been prepared and researched for a project and...
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