Organizational Citizenship Behaviors


This measure was developed by Williams and Anderson (1991). It uses 21 items to describe three types of organizational citizenship behaviors. These are behaviors directed at specific individuals (OCBI), behaviors directed at an organization (OCBO), and employee in-role behaviors (IRB). Organiza­tional citizenship behaviors directed at an individual are those of immediate benefit to a specific person and that indirectly contribute to the organization, such as helping those who are absent or taking a personal interest in another employee. Organizational citizenship behaviors that focus primarily on ben­ efiting the organization include providing advance notice of inability to come to work and the adherence to informal rules. In-role behaviors are those that are recognized by the formal reward systems and that are part of the job requirements. These include performance of duties and undertaking activities that are expected.


Coefficient alpha values ranged from .61 to .88 for organizational citizen­ ship behaviors directed at individuals, .70 to .75 for organizational citizenship behaviors directed at the organization, and .80 to .94 for in-role behaviors (Funderburg & Levy, 1997; Morrison & Phelps, 1999; Randall, Crapanzano, Bormann, & Birjulin, 1999; Thompson & Werner, 1997; Williams & Anderson, 1991; Van Dyne & LePine, 1998). Exploratory factor analysis showed that the items loaded on the three hypothesized dimensions as expected (Williams & Anderson, 1991).


Organizational citizenship behaviors benefiting specific individuals correlated positively with higher employee ratings of intrinsic and extrinsic job characteristics, perceived organizational support, employee self-esteem, employee internal locus of control, affective organizational commitment, and working for a supervisor who encourages participation. OCBI corre­ lated negatively with turnover intentions (Funderburg & Levy, 1997; Randall et al., 1999; Thompson & Werner, 1997; Williams & Anderson, 1991). Peer ratings of OCBI correlated negatively with employee internal locus of control and working for a supervisor with participatory style (Funderburg & Levy, 1997). Organizational citizenship behaviors benefit­ ing the organization correlated positively with higher employee ratings of intrinsic and extrinsic job characteristics and perceived organizational sup­ port. The OCBO subscale also correlated negatively with turnover inten­ tions (Funderburg & Levy, 1997; Randall, 1999; Thompson & Werner, 1997; Williams & Anderson, 1991). In-role behaviors correlated positively with perceived organizational support, job satisfaction, affective organiza­tional commitment, interpersonal helping, personal industry, individual ini­tiative, and loyal boosterism (Funderburg & Levy, 1997; Randall et al., 1999; Thompson & Werner, 1997; Van Dyne & LePine, 1998; Williams & Anderson, 1991).

Funderburg and Levy (1997) found that self-ratings and peer ratings of OCBI had opposite-sign correlations (self-ratings positive; peer ratings neg­ative) with internal locus of control and participatory supervisory style. Van Dyne and LePine (1998) found that self-ratings of in-role behaviors corre­lated positively with peer ratings of in-role behaviors.


Williams, L. J., & Anderson, S. E. (1991). Job satisfaction and organiza­ tional commitment as predictors of organizational citizenship and in-role behaviors. Journal of Management, 17(3), 601-617. Items were taken from Table 1, p. 606. Copyright© 1991. Reproduced with permission.


Responses are obtained using a 5-point Likert-type scale where 1 = strongly disagree and 5 = strongly agree. The measure can be used for peer, super­ visor, or self-reports.

Items for OCBI:

  1. Helps others who have been absent.
  2. Helps others who have heavy work loads.
  3. Assists supervisor with his/her work (when not asked)
  4. Takes time to listen to co-workers’ problems and worries
  5. Goes out of way to help new employees
  6. Takes a personal interest in other employees.
  7. Passes along information to co-workers.

Items for OCBO:

  1. Attendance at work is above the norm.
  2. Gives advance notice when unable to come to work.
  3. Takes undeserved work breaks (R)
  4. Great deal of time spent with personal phone conversations (R)
  5. Complains about insignificant things at work (R)
  6. Conserves and protects organizational property.
  7. Adheres to informal rules devised to maintain order.

Items for IRB:

  1. Adequately completes assigned duties.
  2. Fulfills responsibilities specified in job description.
  3. Performs tasks that are expected of him/her.
  4. Meets formal performance requirements of the job.
  5. Engages in activities that will directly affect his/her performance.
  6. Neglects aspects of the job he/she is obligated to perform (R)
  7. Fails to perform essential duties (R)


Items denoted with (R) are reverse scored.