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«A Dissertation Submitted to the Graduate Faculty of the Louisiana State University and Agricultural and Mechanical College in partial fulfillment of ...»

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ORGANIZATION BENEFITS – THE PANACEA FOR ALL THAT AILS YOU? A DYADIC,

DUAL-EARNER INVESTIGATION OF ORGANIZATION-OFFERED BENEFITS AND

THEIR EFFECT ON INDIVIDUALS AND THEIR PARTNERS

A Dissertation

Submitted to the Graduate Faculty of the

Louisiana State University and

Agricultural and Mechanical College

in partial fulfillment of the

requirements for the degree of

Doctor of Philosophy in The Department of Psychology by Suzanne M. Booth-LeDoux B.S., McNeese State University, 2008 M.A., Louisiana State University, 2011 December 2013

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

Thank you Dr. Russell Matthews for always supporting me, challenging me to push myself, and guiding me. You were always there for me whether in person, by phone, or email.

You have truly been the best advisor I could have ever wished for. To Dr. Emily Elliott, thank you for agreeing to take such a prominent role in my graduate career. From helping to mold me into the teacher I am today to giving me feedback on my various projects over the years, your input has been invaluable to me. Thank you Dr. Tracey Rizzuto for your never failing willingness to support me in my endeavors. You took the time to help me personally in my development when you did not have to, and I truly appreciate it.

Thank you Dr. Daniel Whitman for agreeing to serve on my committees. Your ideas and insights were extremely helpful for improving my research. Also, thank you Dr. Jason Hicks for being an active contributor to my development over the years. You have always been supportive, and I truly appreciate you agreeing to serve on my dissertation committee.

Thank you to Dr. Frank Adair, Dr. Tyler Renshaw, Dr. Hettie Richardson, Jen Beighley, Joe Harris, Danielle Lutfi-Proctor, Ben McLarty, Sarah Miller, Justin Ory, Rob Rieske, and Kristie Schultz for your assistance in making this project possible.

To my parents, you have been there for me, supported me, listened to me, and loved me, and I cannot tell you enough how grateful I am to you and how much I love you. To Rachel, Cameron, Carson, James, Jane, Amanda, Robert, Kristie, Brandon, Monique, and Paula, thank you for the jokes, the texts, and the endless words of support.

To Jared, you are my best friend, and I could not have done this without your support and your endless supply of coffee. Thank you, and I love you.

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS….…...………………………..…..……………………………..…...ii LIST OF TABLES…..……………………....……………….……………………………...….... iv LIST OF FIGURES..…………..………………….……………….….………………..….……... v ABSTRACT……….……………….……....….……..…….…………..…..………….……........ vi INTRODUCTION.……………………………………….……….……………………………… 1 REVIEW OF LITERATURE.……………………………………………………….……..…...... 8 Family-supportive Organization Perceptions..…………..……………….……………..... 8 Employer-offered Work Benefits………….……….…….……….…..……….….……… 9 The Beneficial Role of Family-supportive Organization Perceptions………………....... 14 Crossover between Partners……….…………………………………………………...... 19 MATERIALS AND METHODS………….……………….…..……………………..……..….. 29 Sample…….………………...…….……………….…………………………..……...… 29 Procedure………………………………..……………………………………………..... 29 Measures.…….…….……………...………….………………………….…..….……..... 30 RESULTS…..………………………………………………………………………………...…. 35 Analytic Strategy………………………………………………………………………... 35 Preliminary Results...……………………………...…………………………..……….... 35 Initial Model Assessment………………………………………………………….……. 37 Hypothesis Testing…………………………………………………………………….... 39 Research Question Findings…………………………………………………………….. 41 Additional Findings of Interest……………………………………………………..…… 43 DISCUSSION..………………………………………….………………………………………. 46 Organization-offered Benefits…………………………………………………………... 46 Family-supportive Organization Perceptions as an Antecedent………………………… 50 Type of Couple………………………………………………………………………….. 52 Theoretical Contributions……………………………………………………………….. 53 Future Research…………………………………………………………………………. 54 Limitations.……….…………………………..…….…………………….……………... 56 CONCLUSIONS...…………………………………………………………...…………………..59 REFERENCES……………………………………………..………..………………….………..60 APPENDIX: INSTITUTIONAL REVIEW BOARD APPROVAL……………………………. 70 VITA……………………………………….……………..………….……………………….…. 71

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1. Internal Consistency Reliability Estimates and Inter-correlations for Study Variables…….. 36

2. Paired Sample T-test and Effect Size Estimates for Study Variables……………………….. 37

3. Constructs Set Free to Correlate within the Conceptual Path Model……………………….. 38

4. Independent Samples T-test and Effect Size Estimates for Study Variables across Couple Type…………………………………………………………………………………………. 44

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1. The Proposed Model………………………………………………………………………….. 4

2. Model with Unstandardized and Standardized Parameter Estimates……………………….. 39

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In an effort to attract and retain top talent, organizations often offer and implement various organization benefits. The focus of this dissertation is on the outcomes of those offered organization benefits on employees and their partners. Three types of organization benefits were assessed: family-friendly benefits, financial and compensation benefits, and health care and wellness benefits. Additionally, the connection between the offering of these benefits with family-supportive organization perceptions was also examined. Family-supportive organization perceptions was shown to directly and indirectly link to individual-level outcomes including work-to-family conflict and psychological wellbeing. Moreover, because individuals do not exist in a vacuum (i.e., ecological systems theory), individuals and their partners were assessed concurrently. Individual family-supportive organization perceptions was shown to relate to partner perceptions of the individual’s experiences. Additionally, individual experiences of benefits were shown to crossover and affect partners, specifically male partner family-friendly benefits indirectly linked to female partner wellbeing. Finally, in an effort to extend the current research on types of dual-earning couples, the effects of couple type (i.e., traditional vs.

contemporary egalitarian ideal) were explored.

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In today’s labor market, the ability to recruit and retain the most capable and talented employees is of the utmost import for organizations to remain competitive (e.g., Deery, 2008).

As such, organizations often implement various enticements in order to attract top talent. Such enticements include competitive compensation and increased paid time off. Increasingly though, organizations have begun to consider the importance of providing what are generally known as family-friendly benefits. Interestingly, although preliminary research suggests that organizations do not necessarily gain monetarily by making family-friendly benefits available to employees (Bloom, Kretschmer, & Van Reenen, 2011), organizations do stand to gain increased public appeal and increased commitment from employees (e.g., Miller, 2012, May; Mulvaney, 2011;

Wang, Lawler, & Shi, 2011). Specifically, the cost of implementing various family-friendly practices is often offset by the gains in productivity that result (e.g., increased flextime relates to decreased lost time and absenteeism, and increased productivity; Bloom et al., 2011).

Additionally, the approach of utilizing benefits to attract top talent directly reflects the finding that 60% of working adults reported that they remain with their employer because of the benefits they receive (Workforce Retention Survey; APA, 2012, August).

Further, because family-friendly workplace practices link to a variety of desirable organizational outcomes, researchers have been particularly interested in examining whether and how employees benefit from these practices. For instance, researchers have shown that familyfriendly workplace practices (e.g., flextime, flexplace, dependent care support) are related to individual outcomes such as work-family conflict, job self-efficacy, job and family satisfaction, stress and strain, and physical health (Breaugh & Frye, 2007; Butler, Grzywacz, Ettner, & Liu, 2009; Mesmer-Magnus & Viswesvaran, 2006; Mulvaney, 2011). However, additional research

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his/her employing organization.

One external factor that has emerged is the role that partners play in the formation of an employee’s job attitudes. For example, Wayne, Casper, Matthews, and Allen (2013) showed that an employee’s organizational commitment is influenced by the employee’s partner’s satisfaction with the focal employee’s job and job demands. Although extant research supports that partners can and do affect each other (Wayne et al., 2013; see also, Westman, 2001), research on dyadic effects between partners (i.e., members of a couple affecting each other’s work and/or family lives) comprises a relatively small amount of work-family research. Specifically, Casper, Eby, Bordeaux, Lockwood, and Lambert (2007) reported that only 13% of work-family research incorporates relationships between dyads in which one partner affects the other (i.e., crossover).

Although the data from Casper et al.’s study are now 12 years old and several dyadic studies have been completed since then, a gap still remains.

In addition to the call for research on crossover relationships between members of dyads by Casper et al. (2007), Bronfenbrenner (1979) supports with his work on ecological systems theory that individuals do not exist in a vacuum and thus ought not to be assessed as such.

Mainly, Bronfenbrenner argued that individuals are a product of not only their own experiences but also of those around them, and in order to more fully understand an individual, those around him/her need to be taken into consideration. Thus, given the gap in work-family literature regarding the experiences of dual-earner couples, combined with Bronfenbrenner’s argument, the current dyadic study is offered as an appropriate and necessary addition to the current body of work-family literature.

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the U.S. workforce is married (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2011) and 80% of these couples are dual-earning (Matos & Galinsky, 2012), members of dual-earning couples are the primary population of interest. Dual-earning couples are dyads in which both members of the couple work outside the home for pay. Further, in the present study, dual-earning couples are of interest in order to ascertain the effect that partners and their individual work situations have on each other. To start, the relationship between an individual’s family-supportive organization perceptions (i.e., the degree to which an individual believes that his employer is familysupportive; Allen, 2001), as driven by employer-offered benefits, and his psychological wellbeing is explored. Additionally this relationship is further examined to determine the influence of the individual’s perceptions of his partner’s organization’s family-supportiveness (i.e., the degree to which an individual believes his partner’s organization is family-supportive) on the individual’s wellbeing. Past research supports the link between an individual’s employeroffered benefits and the individual’s psychological wellbeing, but the moderating effect of the individual’s perception of his partner’s organization’s family-supportiveness remains to be determined. Also, an individual’s perception of his partner’s organization’s familysupportiveness is offered as an extension of Allen’s (2001) family-supportive organization perceptions.

As depicted in Figure 1, an individual’s family-supportive organization perceptions are posited to be derived as a function of employer-offered benefits available to the individual. Next, family-supportive organization perceptions are hypothesized to directly link to individual psychological wellbeing. Thus, the degree to which benefits are related to employee wellbeing is predicted to be a function of how family-supportive the organization is perceived to be by the

–  –  –

benefits and employee wellbeing. However, this mediated process is argued to be influenced by the individual’s reported work-to-family conflict; put another way, the individual’s reported work-to-family conflict partially mediates the relationship between family-supportive organizational perceptions and psychological wellbeing.

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