Organizational Citizenship Behavior


This measure (Organizational Citizenship Behavior) was developed by Smith, Organ, and Near (1983). The mea­ sure uses 16 items to describe two dimensions of organizational behavior. The two dimensions are altruism and generalized compliance. Altruism is defined as helping co-workers personally, such as assisting a co-worker lift a heavy load. Generalized compliance is impersonal helpful behavior, such as punctuality and not wasting time on the job.


Coefficient alpha values for altruism ranged from .86 to .91. Alpha for gen­eralized compliance was .91 (Cropanzano, Howes, Grandey, & Toth, 1997; Wayne, Shore, & Liden, 1997).


Altruism correlated positively with generalized compliance, developmental experiences, promotions, supervisor’s liking for an employee, perceived organizational support, leader-member exchange (LMX), affective commit­ ment, and employee performance ratings. Altruism correlated negatively with intentions to quit (Cropanzano et al., 1997; Wayne, Shore, & Liden, 1997). Wayne, Shore, and Liden (1997) found through factor analysis that altruism was empirically distinct from employee performance ratings and supervisor’s liking for an employee.


Smith, C. A., Organ, D. W., & Near, J.P. (1983). Organizational citizenship behavior: Its nature and antecedents. Journal of Applied Psychology, 68, 653-663. Items were taken from Table 1, p. 657. Copyright© 1983 by the American Psychological Association. Reprinted with permission.


Responses are obtained using a 7-point Likert-type scale where 1 = never and 7 = always. The respondent is asked to think about someone who works or has worked for or with the respondent.

Altruism items:

  1. Helps others who have been absent
  2. Volunteers for things that are not required
  3. Orients new people even though it is not required
  4. Helps others who have heavy workloads
  5. Assists supervisor with his or her work
  6. Makes innovative suggestions to improve department
  7. Attends functions not required but that help the company image

Generalized compliance items:

  1. Punctuality
  2. Takes undeserved breaks (R)
  3. Attendance at work is above the norm
  4. Coasts toward the end of the day (R)
  5. Gives advance notice if unable to come to work
  6. Great deal of time spent with personal phone conversations (R)
  7. Does not take unnecessary time off work
  8. Does not take extra breaks
  9. Does not spend time in idle conversation Items denoted with (R) are reverse

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Mohammed Looti, PSYCHOLOGICAL SCALES (2023) Organizational Citizenship Behavior. Retrieved from DOI: 10.13140/RG.2.2.31575.96163