Job satisfaction is simply defined as the affective orientation that an employee has towards his or her work (Price, 2001). In other words, it is an affective reaction to a job that results from the comparison of perceived outcomes with those that are desired (Kam, 1998). Shortly, job satisfaction describes the feelings, attitudes or preferences of individuals regarding work (Chen, 2008). Furthermore, it is the degree to which employees enjoy their jobs (McCloskey and McCain, 1987).
And also, it is possible to see a number of theories developed to uderstand its nature in literature. Vroom (1964), need/value fulfilment theory, states that job satisfaction is negatively related to the discrepancy between individual needs and the extent to which the job supplies these needs. On the other hand, Porter and Lawler (1968) collect the influences on job satisfaction in two groups of internal and external satisfactory factors.
According to them, internal satisfactory factors are related the work itself (such as feeling of independence, feeling of achievement, feeling of victory, self-esteem, feeling of control and other similar feeling obtained from work), whereas external satisfactory factors are not directly related to work itself (such as good relationships with colleagues, high salary, good welfare and utilities).
So, the influences on job satisfaction can be also divided into work-related and employee-related factors (Glisson and Durick, 1988). On the other hand, Arvey and Dewhirst (1976), took 271 scientists as a study sample, and found that the degree of job-satisfaction of the workers with high achievement motivation exceeded that of workers with low achievement motivation. Also autonomy is an important concern for employees’ job satisfaction.
For example, Abdel-Halim (1983) investigated 229 supervisory and non-supervisory employees in a large retail-drug company and concluded that individuals who have high need-for-independence performed better and were more satisfied with high participation for non-repetititive tasks (Kam, 1998). Additionally, administrative styles, professional status and pay are known as important factors influencing job satisfaction. For example, Carr and Kazanowsky (1994) successfully showed that inadequate salary was very lelated to employees’ dissatisfaction.
And recent studies showed that a participative (democratic) management style was mostly prefered by today’s managers to increase their employees’ job satisfaction (Dogan and Ibicioglu, 2004; Knoop, 1991). Consequently, numerous researches have been going on job satisfaction for many years. And it is common thought that job satisfaction influence organizational behavior, namely it positively affects employee working performance and organizational commitment, and negatively influences employee turnover (Agarwal and Ferrat, 2001; Poulin, 1994; Chen, 2008).
Moreover, the relationships between job satisfaction and many variables such as motivation, stress, salary, promotion, role conflict, distributive and procedural justice, role ambiguity, autonomy, workload, leadership style, educational level, emotional intelligence are still being analyzed in different fields as an attractive and important subject of management literature (Ross and Reskin, 1992; Agho et al. , 1993; Stordeur et al. 2001; Chu et al. , 2003; Kafetsios and Zampetakis, 2008). For example, Sengin (2003), and Hinshaw and Atwood (1984) identify variables that influence employee job satisfaction as: (1) demographic variables: education, experience, and position in the hiererchy; (2) Job characteristics: autonomy, tasks repetetivenes, and salaries; and (3) organizational environment factors: degree of professionalization, type of unit.
And Mrayyan (2005) says that the variables of encouragement, feedback, a widening pay scale and clear job description, career development oppurtunity, supportive leadership style, easy communication with colleagues and social interaction positively affect job satisfaction, whereas role stress has a negative influence on it.
Similarly, the research made by Chu and his friends (2003) demonstrates that satisfaction is positively related to involvement, positive affectivity, autonomy, distributive justice, procedural justice, promotional chances, supervisor support, co-worker support, but it is negatively related to negative affectivity, role ambiguity, work-load, resource inadequacy and reutilization.