Prior research has amply demonstrated that employees’ personal relationship with the organisation influences their trust in it. In this two-study investigation, we examine how employees’ beliefs about the organisation’s legitimacy relate to their organisational trust because legitimacy signals organisational trustworthiness in the impersonal system of the institutional environment. Results from Study 1, which drew on data from one organisation, reveal that employees’ legitimacy beliefs are related to their organisational trust. Furthermore, results from Study 2, which are based on data from five organisations, reveal that employees’ judgment of the organisation’s trustworthiness mediates the relationship between legitimacy beliefs and organisational trust. Overall, our findings create a new avenue for trust research by advancing the idea that employees' trust in their employer organisation derives in part from the reflection of trustworthiness that arises due to the organisation’s association with the institutional environment.
Organisational trust, organisational legitimacy, trustworthiness, institutional theory
Organizational Behavior and Theory | Organization Development
Organisational Behaviour and Human Resources
Journal of Trust Research
Taylor & Francis (Routledge): SSH Titles
LAMERTZ, Kai and BHAVE, Devasheesh P..
Employee perceptions of organisational legitimacy as impersonal bases of organisational trustworthiness and trust. (2017). Journal of Trust Research. 7, (2), 129-149. Research Collection Lee Kong Chian School Of Business.
Available at: http://ink.library.smu.edu.sg/lkcsb_research/5354
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