A Field Study of the Relationship Between the Organizational Feedback Environment and Performance

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This field study used the Job Feedback Survey (Herold & Parsons, 1985) and performance data gathered from multiple sources to examine the relationship between the perceived organizational feedback environment and performance. Regression analyses indicated that, while holding the other feedback variables constant, feedback from supervisory and organizational sources was related to reported job performance while feedback from peers and self was not. Most of the unique variance in performance explained by feedback was also accounted for by feedback from organizational and supervisory sources. Negative expressions from organizational/supervisory sources (e.g., the supervisor expressing anger, the company communicating dissatisfaction with poor performance) were related to lower performance, and positive job changes initiated by these sources (e.g., increasing responsibility, assignment to special jobs) were related to higher performance. Higher performers did not receive more feedback than lower performers but did receive more total positive feedback. Supplemental issues, possible explanations, and implications of the findings are discussed.

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Personnel Psychology, v. 42, issue 2, p. 343-358

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