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Abstract

Using data from the 1999–2002 Canadian Workplace and Employee Survey, the authors investigate the relationship between job satisfaction and high-involvement work practices such as quality circles, feedback, suggestion programs, and task teams. They consider the direction of causality, identifying both reasons that work practices might affect job satisfaction, and reasons that satisfaction might affect participation in high-involvement practices. They find that satisfaction was positively associated with high-involvement practices, a result that held across different specifications of the empirical model and different subsets of data. Conversely, worker outcomes that might signal dissatisfaction, like work-related stress or grievance filing, appear to have been unrelated to high-involvement jobs. However, the data suggest the presence of self-selection: satisfied workers were more likely to increase participation in high-involvement practices, but participation did not predict future increases in satisfaction.

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