Journal of Intercultural Communication, ISSN 1404-1634, issue 50, July 2019

Intercultural Sensitivity and Organizational Citizenship Behaviour of Uganda Hotels’ Staff

Joshua Gukiina1, Joseph Mpeera Ntayi1, Waswa Balunywa1 & Augustine Ahiauzu2

1Makerere University Business School, Uganda; 2School River State University of Science & Technology, Nigeria

Abstract

The study examined the extent to which; intercultural sensitivity and organizational citizenship behaviour are constructs of the social exchange theory and intercultural sensitivity explains organizational citizenship behaviour. A mixed research design was applied to determine the predictive relationship intercultural sensitivity and organizational citizenship behaviour. Intercultural sensitivity significantly predicts Organizational citizenship behaviour.The instruments were adapted to the Uganda hotels’ environment. It was cross sectional yet, behaviour unfolds gradually. Limited qualitative inquiry was undertaken because; only explanations for the quantitative results were sought. The paper domesticates intercultural sensitivity and organizational citizenship behaviour within the social exchange theory and directly tested for the predictive relationship between intercultural sensitivity and organizational citizenship behaviour.

Keywords: Organizational Citizenship Behaviour, Intercultural sensitivity


Background

World over, unproductive employee behaviours continue to challenge both management scholars and practitioners yet, organizational efficiency and effectiveness remain largely a function of constructive employee behaviours (Karina, 2017). This is probably the reason interested scholars have been invited to focus on to constructive employee behaviours called Organizational Citizenship Behaviour (OCB) (Weiping et al, 2017; Han & Hovav, 2016). As a concept, OCB was pioneered by Barnard (1938) when he coined that of willingness to cooperate. Against this background, (Katz, 1964; Katz and Kahn, 1966) later conceptualized three forms of employee behaviors necessary in fostering organizational efficiency and effectiveness to date. These are; the decision to join and stay in the organization, the undertaking of one’s prescribed roles in a responsible manner and the performance of innovative and spontaneous activities beyond the mandatory job description. Subsequently, it was that of innovative and spontaneous behaviors that was reconceptualized as Organizational Citizenship Behavior by Organ, (1988). However, while most recent scholarship on innovative employee behaviours, points to the need for enhanced attention on OCB (Weiping et al, 2017; Han & Hovav, 2016; Ekowati et al., 2013), current studies on OCB in the hospitality industry have concentrated on how it impacts on other variables (Yurcu & Akıncı, 2017), whether these behaviours exist or not (Erkiliç, & Güllüce, 2017) instead on the factors that could explain their growth since they are degenerating within certain hotels in Uganda as indicated in the following story.

Contextually, an in-depth interview with hotel supervisors in Uganda revealed that these behaviours are degenerating. For instance, it was indicated that certain employees do not want to help their colleagues who might have excess workload. They work for specified schedules and after which they sign out. There is rampant dodging of work, and unnecessary absenteeism. Further, some do not mind about the errors that their colleagues make and do not alert their colleagues about those mistakes that they have committed even when they know that their mistakes have a spiral effect on what their colleagues do. Some offer selective assistance to those that subscribe to their cultural backgrounds. In addition, certain employees complain a lot regardless of the minute nature of the problems. They are intolerant to problems manifested through reported perpetual dissatisfaction, grumbling, failure to take initiatives, pretense to be so busy by walking around the hotels and engaging in unnecessary conversations about their supervisors and friends who engage in voluntary behaviours. Above all, certain employees were reported to have no regard for the hotels and what actually they stand for. As a result, some segregate customers depending on who gives them money in return for the services. Some continue to give limited information to customers and at times just ignore them. The reason for the degeneration of OCB was the staff unwillingness to freely interact with one another regardless of their differences in cultural backgrounds. This is what is termed as intercultural sensitivity. It was reported that such staff only care about colleagues from the same cultural backgrounds and it is these that they help with excess workload.

Theoretically, OCB is largely rooted in the Social Exchange Theory (SET) associated with Cropanzano & Mitchell, (2005). This theory posits that organizations function through mutually desirable relationships in which the parties involved reciprocate a variety of benefits, including those that are socio-emotional in nature. As such; individuals engage in OCB as a gesture of reciprocation so as to maintain harmonious workplace interactions but without necessarily expecting to be paid (Homans, 1961). This is because; organizational social exchanges cause a high degree of interdependence between parties. These interdependencies negate any discrimination such as that based on cultural differences. As a result, the high-quality relationships recognize the need to harmoniously relate with others from different cultural backgrounds (intercultural sensitivity) because of the associated disadvantages. In so doing, offering services beyond the call of duty is inevitable. Therefore, within the context of this theoretical framework, the challenges of OCB among Uganda hotels’ staff, is attributed to the rejection of the postulates of the social exchange theory. However, to date there is a dearth of empirical literature that relates intercultural sensitivity to OCB most importantly in the hospitality industry. To this extent, the objective of this study was threefold: Firstly; to demonstrate that Intercultural sensitivity and OCB are constructs of the Social exchange theory (Cropanzano & Mitchell, 2005). Secondly, both intercultural sensitivity and OCB are related and thirdly, that Intercultural sensitivity is a significant predictor of the OCB of Uganda hotels’ staff.

Literature review and hypothesis development

A review of some recent relevant literature that relates Intercultural sensitivity and Organizational citizenship behaviour has been attempted. However, it is noted that some inherent weaknesses exist that justify a new study. The review is as follows:

Intercultural Sensitivity and Organizational Citizenship Behaviour

Extant literature does not competently present a clear relationship between Intercultural sensitivity and Organizational citizenship behaviour. This is because; it is awash with mere statements against which general extrapolations have been made to underscore the relationship under consideration. However, the following arguments lay bare this relationship.

In an effort to explore the role of interactions in fostering OCB, Ghasem et al., (2016) argue that during such voluntary cooperation, individuals undertake duties beyond their responsibilities and use their energy and insight for developing their abilities in favor of the organization. However, intercultural sensitivity is denoted among others by effective interactions with people from different cultural backgrounds. This is in part, the essence of voluntary cooperation. Therefore, these authors imply that when people cooperate freely with each other, they end up engaging in activities beyond their official responsibilities. Therefore, harmonious interactions explain OCB. However, while this could be true, this relationship was simply observed in passing because; the study by Ghasem et al., (2016) examined the relationship between OCB and organizational performance. It only adapted a quantitative design and performed a correlation analysis alone without relaying the need for prediction. The current study examined the predictive relationship between Intercultural sensitivity and OCB and it adopted a mixed methods research design in which both qualitative and quantitative results were obtained for the purpose of gaining convergence on reality.

In a study by Noor et al., (2014), diversity receptiveness is closely associated with intercultural sensitivity. It means a condition in which people interact with others of different background at the workplace. Behjat and Chowdhury (2012) have argued that diversity receptiveness encourages good coexistence between individual, groups and the organization because, it enhances communication, creates and promotes cultural sensitivity. As such, since diversity is often interpreted as the mixing of people different backgrounds, it appears that diverse employees who perceive that they are well managed by the supervisors in turn would lead them to exercise greater OCB (Noor et al., 2014). Therefore, on the basis of a near relationship with diversity receptiveness, intercultural sensitivity could explain OCB. However, the study by Noor et al., (2014), was not about the relationship between Intercultural Sensitivity and OCB. Therefore, while it might be right to believe that Intercultural sensitivity is related to OCB based on the findings by Noor et al., (2014), this conclusion should not be based on constructs that are conceptually different.

Kandlousi et al (2010) argue that supervisor–subordinate based job-related communication and co-workers information exchange relate to OCB. This means that understanding how to communicate to one another whether as a supervisor or a worker, is a significant predictor of worker behaviours such as OCB since to Ryan et al, (2010) cultural norms of society shape communicative behaviour in workplaces. This could indirectly denote a relationship between intercultural sensitivity and OCB because; the ability to communicate to others so that they can engage in OCB is in some form considerate of Intercultural sensitivity. However, this assertion is based on a mere inference from a study about the power of cultural norms on effective communication in a workplace but, not between Intercultural sensitivity and OCB in particular.

According to Tachia (2014) and Shore et al., (2010), diversity inclusion leads to OCB. This is because, when individual differences are appreciated, through giving equal opportunity to all, they can enhance organisational citizenship behaviour, among others (Shore et al., 2010). Interestingly however, all these very beautiful revelations are based on inferences and not a direct study of the relationship between Intercultural sensitivity and organizational citizenship behaviour. This study examined the direct relationship between these two constructs that have probably been ignored by contemporary scholars. Against this background, it was appropriate to hypothesize that:

H1. There is a significant and positive relationship between Intercultural Sensitivity and Organizational Citizenship Behaviour

Methods

The study adopted a mixed methods design strategy (Creswell, 2003). Using this strategy, both quantitative and qualitative data were collected using two data collection methods: a questionnaire and an interview guide. The purpose was to overcome any weaknesses associated with any one method which could have affected the awaited convergence on what OCB is and its explanations by the two designs (Saunders et al.; 2007).

Sample and procedure

According to the Hospitality report Uganda - Jumia Travel (2015), there are over 1,173,000 employees in the hospitality industry. Based on Krejcie & Morgan (1970), since our population was greater than 1,000,000, the required sample size was 384. This was obtained from the 100 hotels of the 516 (www.jovago.com/uganda hotels) in Uganda using simple random sampling and the lottery method in which cases were selected after replacement. In order to select the sample elements, sampling frames which were lists of staff in each hotel selected, were obtained from the human resource departments of the 100 (one hundred) hotels in Uganda that were selected. Atleast five respondents were targeted due to the busy schedule of the staff there in. Of the five respondents, one was a supervisor and the remaining four were subordinates.

After selection of the five elements from each hotel that participated in the study, a self-administered questionnaire was issued to each respondent in the 100 hotels that were located in sixteen districts in Uganda. As a result, 500 questionnaires were distributed however, only 350 questionnaires were realized. After aggregation using the name hotel, these were represented seventy (70) hotels. After data cleaning, 47 questionnaires were eliminated because of incomplete answers, and a remainder of 303 questionnaires was used for analysis. The questionnaire consisted of two parts. First part was about demographic characteristics regarding the respondents. The second part focused on the measurements of the study variables.

The sample included 57.0 % (173) males and 43.0% (130) females; more than half of the sample were older than 31 years representing 54.0% (163). The majority of the sample was composed of graduates 47.0% (143) and diploma holders 32.0% (97) with the remaining consisting of certificate holders 19.0% (57), postgraduate holders 02% (0.6) and professors (15.0%). The years of service of the participants ranged from 5 years 32% (96) to between 6-10 years; 42% (127) to more than 10 years 26% (80). In terms of designation, supervisors were 22.0% (65) and subordinates were 78.0% (238).

Measures

The study variables were operationalized based on earlier scholarly scales. The two variables that were examined are: Intercultural sensitivity and Organizational Citizenship Behaviour. All the items were anchored on a five point likert scale which ranged from 1= strongly disagree to 5= Strongly Agree. This is because the distances of scores such as 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 are equal and yield data which are approximately normally distributed (Likert (1932). The description of the measurements for each variable is as follows:

Intercultural sensitivity

Extant literature provides varying scales of Intercultural sensitivity but this study adapted the Intercultural sensitivity scale by Chen & Starosta (2000). This is a five dimension scale and these are: (i) interaction engagement, (ii) respect for cultural differences, (iii) interaction confidence, (iv) interaction enjoyment, and (v) interaction attentiveness. This scale was adapted because; it has been tested in the field of human resource management (Zakaria, 2000). Some of the sample items that have been adapted are: i enjoy interacting with fellow employees that come from different cultures and I am open-minded to my fellow staff from different cultures. These now appear as follows: As an employee of this hotel, i enjoy interacting with fellow employees that come from different cultures. As an employee of this hotel, I am open-minded to my fellow staff from different cultures.

Organizational Citizenship Behaviors

Like its related variables aforementioned, OCB has numerous scales but this study adapted that by Organ (1988) which has altruism, courtesy, conscientiousness, sportsmanship and civic virtue. This is because, in face of all the various factor structures proposed by the diverse scholars examined, Podsakoff et al.,(2009) as cited in Chun-Fang and Tsung-Sheng (2012:181), maintain that Organ’s (1988) five dimension remain popular.

Data management and analysis

Data were entered and analyzed using SPSS. We checked and managed data entry errors and missing values. A missing completely at random (MCAR) test was performed to determine the percentage of missing values in the data set. MCAR test results indicate that data was missing completely at random. Imputation of missing values was performed using the linear interpolation method. We tried to manage common methods bias using procedural methods as advocated for by Podsakoff et al., (2012). The study equally tested for the reliability of all the measurement scales using Cronbach alpha coefficient and none of the constructs had a cutoff point of less than 0.70 (Nunnally,1978) as summarized in the table below.

Table 1: Reliability of the measurement scales

VariableCronbach’s alpha
Intercultural sensitivity.771
Organizational Citizenship Behaviours.770

The study equally determined the content validity of the measurement items. This was done by a team of experts. The experts were: three professors from the behavioural psychology and human resource management. The results indicate that none of the constructs had a content validity index of less than 0.70 as summarized in Table 2 below.

Table 2: Content validity of the measurement scales

VariableDimensionsPartial CVIOverall CVI
Intercultural sensitivityInteraction engagement0.750.85
Respect for cultural differences0.80
interaction confidence0.75
interaction enjoyment0.70
interaction attentiveness0.73
Organizational Citizenship BehaviourAltruism0.770.80
Conscientiousness0.87
Sportsmanship0.77
Courtesy0.80
Civic virtue0.83

Source: Experts’ opinion

Factor analysis was performed to identify the patterns in data and to compress data to a controllable level (Field, 2005; Hair, Anderson, Tatham, & Black, 1998). Using principal component analysis, only those factors with an Eigen value greater than 1 were retained (Guttman-Kaiser rule). The Kaiser- Meyer- Olkin (KMO) and Bartlett’s (1954) test of sampling adequacy was computed to ensure that factor analysis yielded distinct and reliable factors (Kaiser, 1974). The following criteria were used to determine the sampling adequacy (Kaiser, 1974): 0.90=Marvelous; 0.80=Meritorious; 0.70=Middling; 0.60=Mediocre; 0.50=Miserable and below 0.50, unacceptable. The KMO for these study variables ranged between 0.89 and 0.98 and as such, ranged between meritorious and marvelous. Equally, it is only items with communalities of 0.60 and above that were retained.

Results from the exploratory factor analysis yielded varying factors: For instance, Intercultural sensitivity yielded five factors and these were: Interaction engagement, Respect for cultural differences, Interaction confidence, Interaction enjoyment and Interaction attentiveness. These accounted for 69.07% of the variance. Organizational citizenship behavoiurs retained five factors and these are: Altruism, Conscientiousness, Courtesy, Sportsmanship and Civic Virtue. These accounted for 72.31% of the variance.

In order to determine the construct validity of the study variables, the following analyses were carried out: chi-square, GFI, RMSEA, CFI, NFI, RFI, IFI, and AGFI. Relatedly, to determine the relationship between the variables of the study: Intercultural sensitivity and organizational citizenship behaviours, the Pearson correlation analysis was run, and to further determine the influence of the variables on each other, linear regression analysis was used. In addition, structural equation modeling was used to test the fit of the research model. Below are the confirmatory factor analysis results for the variables of the study.

The measurement models (CFA) of the study constructs

Since the constructs are not directly observed (James et al., 2006), there was need to specify a measurement model for each study variable. Furthermore, the measurement model is essential because it provides thorough testing for the reliability and validity of the scales employed to measure the latent constructs and their manifest variables (Loehlin, 1998). Note that for the measurement model to be reliable the Cronbach’s alpha (α> 0.7) and Composite Reliability (CR> 0.70) Convergent validity is measured by Average Variance Extracted (AVE) which should be (AVE>0.5). According to Hamdan et al., (2011), discriminant validity test shows how much variance in the indicators that are able to explain variance in the construct. Discriminant validity value obtained from the square root of AVE value. The square root of AVE should be greater than the values of correlation between the respective constructs (Fornell-Larcker, 1980). It is important to note that all the variables met this criterion. Below is a report of the confirmatory factor analyses of each study variable.

The measurement model of Intercultural sensitivity

AMOS software was used to assess the relevance of the various indicator variables at explaining the latent variable called Intercultural sensitivity. The dimensions of Intercultural sensitivity are: Interaction engagement (ENG), Respect for cultural differences (RESP), Interaction confidence (CON) and Interaction attentiveness (ATT). The model results indicate that Interaction engagement (ENG), retained three items which had outer model loadings above 0.700, and these ranged from 0.70 to 0.80. Respect for cultural differences (RESP), retained three items that had acceptable loadings which were above 0.700 and these ranged from 0.73 to 0.78. Interaction confidence (CON) retained three items whose loadings were above 0.70 and these ranged from 0.75 to 0.80. Interaction attentiveness (ATT) retained three items and these equally had loadings above 0.70 and they ranged from 0.73 to 0.82. The detailed model is as follows:

Figure 1: The measurement model of Intercultural sensitivity

All of these indices met recommended guidelines and the model fit was considered acceptable (Byrne, 2010; Hair et al., 2010). Based on the model fit indices in Fig: 01, it is evident that all of these indices met recommended guidelines and the model fit was considered acceptable (Byrne, 2010; Hair et al., 2010). Based on the CFA results in the above figure, the four separate factors of the hypothesized model were moderately correlated and they all indicate desirable internal consistency attributes for all of the subscales. Evaluation of the confirmatory factor analysis results further indicates that the four factor model produced a better fit in terms of the stated indices above. Confirmatory factor analysis was used to load each summated factor onto its respective latent factor and the intercorrelations among these latent factors were examined clearly and it is here in stated that each manifest (measured) factor is theoretically relevant. This outer model loading results were further summarized in the table: 4, below for the purpose of relaying clarity of the fitness of the model.

Table 3: Summary of the measurement model for Intercultural Sensitivity

Latent VariablesIndicatorsLoadingsIndicator ReliabilityComposite ReliabilityAVEDiscriminant Validity
ENGINENG20.800.720.790.82YES
INENG40.710.76
INENG50.700.80
RESPINRES20.720.850.790.73YES
INRES40.820.71
INRES50.770.70
CONINCON30.750.740.800.73YES
INCON50.780.72
INCON60.720.77
ATT1NATT20.870.730.760.74YES
INATT40.710.76
INATT50.760.70

Results in the table above, indicate that four dimensions were retained by the measurement model of intercultural sensitivity. These are: Interaction engagement, Respect for cultural differences, Interaction confidence and Interaction attentiveness. It is also clear that all the dimensions adopted in this intercultural sensitivity model were reliable since they obtained the Composite Reliability and Cronbach’s Alpha values more than 0.7.

Measurement model of Organizational Citizenship Behaviour

AMOS software was used to assess the relevance of the various indicator variables at explaining the latent variable called Organizational Citizenship behaviour. The dimensions of Organizational Citizenship behaviours are: Altruism (ALT), Courtesy (COU), Sportsmanship (SPT) and Civic virtue (CIV). The model results indicate that Altruism (ALT), retained four items which had outer model loadings above 0.70, and these ranged from 0.72 to 0.80. Courtesy (COU) retained four items which had outer model loadings above 0. 70 and these ranged from 0.70 to 0.80. Sportsmanship (SPT) retained four items that had acceptable loadings which were above 0.70 and these ranged from 0.71 to 0.83. Civic virtue (CIV) retained four items whose loadings were above 0.70 and these ranged from 0.72 to 0.80. The detailed model is as follows:

Figure 2: The measurement model of Organizational Citizenship Behaviour

Based on the CFA results in Fig: 02 above; the four separate factors of the hypothesized model were moderately correlated. All indicate desirable internal consistency attributes for all of the subscales (Byrne, 2010; Hair et al., 2010). Evaluation of the confirmatory factor analysis results further indicates that the four factor model produced a better fit in terms of the stated indices above. Confirmatory factor analysis was used to load each summated factor onto its respective latent factor and the intercorrelations among these latent factors were examined clearly and it is here in stated that each manifest (measured) factor is theoretically relevant. This outer model loading results were further summarized in the table: 2 below for the purpose of relaying clarity of the fitness of the model.

Table 4: Summary of Reflective Measurement model for Organizational Citizenship Behaviours

Latent VariablesIndicatorsLoadingsIndicator ReliabilityComposite ReliabilityAVEDiscriminant Validity
ALTALT10.710.720.800.82YES
ALT20.800.78
ALT40.750.71
ALT60.720.72
COUCOU20.770.750.770.70YES
COU30.800.71
COU40. 720.76
COU50.700.71
SPTSPT20.710.740.800.73YES
SPT30.730.73
SPT40.760.73
SPT50.830.72
CIVCIV20.760.740.830.74YES
CIV30.770.78
CIV40.800.76
CIV50.720.72

Results in the table above, indicate that four dimensions were retained by the measurement model of Organizational virtuousness. These are: Courtesy, Sportsmanship, Conscientiousness and Civic virtue. It is also clear that all the dimensions that were retained in this Organizational Citizenship behaviour model are reliable since they obtained the Composite Reliability and Cronbach’s Alpha values more than 0.7. In order to subject the data to further statistical tests such as correlation and regression, we had to determine the extent to which it conformed to parametric assumptions. After a careful analysis, it was determined that the data was in conformity with the parametric assumptions in terms of; linearity, normality, homogeneity of variance and multicolinearity as recommended by (Field, 2009).

Results

In this section, we present the correlation and regression results that were performed.

Zero Order Correlations

Table 5, presents Means, Standard Deviations (SD) and Zero Order Correlations of the study constructs. The study established a significant positive relationship between Intercultural Sensitivity and Organizational Citizenship Behaviour (r =.313, p≤ 0.01). This means that the more Ugandan Hotels are interculturally sensitive, the more their employees engage in organizational citizenship behaviour. In other words, the more staffs of Uganda hotel embrace a culture of harmonious interaction with others regardless of their divergent cultural backgrounds, the more they engage in organizational citizenship behaviour.

Table: 5: Showing Means, Standard Deviations (SD) and Zero Order Correlations

VariableMeansSD12
Intercultural Sensitivity (1)4.000.681
Organizational Citizenship Behavior (2)4.020.54.313**1

**. Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2-tailed); N=303

Regression results

In order to determine the potential of Intercultural sensitivity to predict Organizational citizenship behaviour, there was need to perform a regression analysis. This produced the following results.

The extent to which Intercultural Sensitivity, predicts Organizational Citizenship

Behaviours

Table 6 and figure 3 below; show the standardized regression weights, standard error, critical ratios and the probability values between the study constructs. Consistent with H1, the study finds thatIntercultural Sensitivity is a significant predictor of Organizational Citizenship behaviour (β= .212, CR= 2.021, P ≤ 0.05). This means that when Intercultural sensitivity of hotel staff improves by 1 standard deviation, Organizational citizenship behaviour of hotel staff significantly improves (.212 standard deviations).

This further means that the more employees of Uganda hotels are open-minded to one another regardless of their cultural differences and ask for assistance, the more they help one another in situations when they encounter excess workload during the delivery of hotel services to customers. It also means that the more employees of Uganda hotels find it very easy to talk in front of their colleagues from different cultural backgrounds, the more they are able to address their petty differences and as such not complain to management even over minor issues that they could handle before they get out of hand. These relationships are supported by the following qualitative findings

“……As a supervisor, I have through various meetings that I hold on every Sunday morning asked my staffs to feel free with one another because, I know that they have to assist each other at all times. Atleast my staffs know that I do not have to be asked to help” (Resp.4, operations manager of one hotel in Iganga). In a related interview, a respondent remarked that….” As a hotel manager, I want to tell you that competition is high….i take employees who are serious….. I have worked very well with employees who are not my tribe mates. They do not give you headache. You really see that they came to work and you do not here them complain…..” (Resp.6, a manager of a hotel in Jinja) To this extent, intercultural sensitivity can predict the engagement in organizational citizenship behaviours by employees of Uganda hotels.

Table 6: Showing Standardized Regression Weights

Estimate Standardized β coefficientS.E.C.R.PLabel
Organizational Citizenship Behavior<---Intercultural Sensitivity.212.1162.021.029par_7

Figure 3: Showing sem model of organizational citizenship behaviours of Uganda hotel staff

Discussion and recommendations

This study investigated the role of Intercultural sensitivity in fostering Organizational citizenship behaviour of Uganda Hotel staff. The following presentation focuses on the detailed discussion of the results.

Intercultural Sensitivity and Organizational Citizenship Behaviour

The study established that Intercultural sensitivity is a significant predictor of Organizational citizenship behaviour. This means that whenever employees enjoy interactions with their colleagues that come from different cultural backgrounds, they subsequently become encouraged to engage in more voluntary behaviours such as; helping one another during times of much workload, not giving up even when they have committed mistakes, being punctual and maintaining a clean work place. This finding is in line with that by Kandlosi, & Abdollahi, (2010) who reported that supervisor–subordinate based job-related communication and harmonious co-workers information exchange, enhance the engagement in Organizational citizenship behaviour. It is equally in line with Mohanty & Rath (2012) who argued that effective social interactions in which there is harmonious communication foster the engagement in Organizational citizenship behaviour. This relationship is further supported by the following qualitative responses.

As a dimension of intercultural sensitivity, interaction engagement that was interpreted by respondents to mean being open minded when dealing with colleagues from different cultures, was found to lead to OCB. This is because, respondents argued that every time they are open minded to the extent that they share their feelings and work related challenges with colleagues from different cultural backgrounds, they are easily assisted by these colleagues who disregard cultural differences. This is what is called altruism as a form of Organizational citizenship behaviour. Respondents noted that being frank and open minded to colleagues who may not necessarily be from the same cultural background has helped them to solve a number of work related challenges.

Respondents further revealed that whenever they are open- minded and share their views about their work, they become motivated to assist one another to the extent of preventing the occurrence of work related problems (courtesy). This is because, they believe that if a problem occurred, it has the capacity to affect the operations of the hotels that employ them. Therefore, they try as much as possible to deter the occurrence of any problems so as to secure their employment. They equally argued that being open minded has helped employees to be tolerant with the problems that they undergo while at work (sportsmanship). This is because, when they share these challenges with their colleagues, they get pieces of advice on how they can engage them other than complain to management regardless of the nature of these problems.

Relatedly, respect for cultural differences as a dimension of intercultural sensitivity, was understood to mean valuing cultural differences and found to lead to OCB. For instance, respondents revealed that when they value the ways of behaviour of their colleagues from different cultural backgrounds, in return these colleagues do not hesitate to assist one another in case of excess work load (altruism). They also cannot sit and watch him or her commit a mistake without warning him or her about that impending problem (courtesy) because, they also continue to be warned by those other colleagues who do not necessarily come from the same cultural backgrounds. That they have learnt to tolerate one another(sportsmanship) because they respect one another and can even advise one another on how to go by the rules and regulations (conscientiousness) should they sense that a colleague is likely to abuse the expectations of the hotel.

In addition, respondents equally revealed that every moment they feel sure and contented of their relationship (interaction confidence); with most of their workmates, they find themselves engage in OCB. For instance, it was stated that once colleagues do not take them for granted and remain assuring that their relationship is ok and necessary, they find it important to assist one another when burdened by work (altruism), can warn one another of the likely mistakes to be committed (courtesy), can find a reason for being obedient (conscientiousness) by way of living according to established rules and regulations of the hotel and can above all demonstrate that they are part and partial of the work that they do to the extent that they can stand and even defend the hotels to any outsiders (civic virtue).

In a related revelation, it was stated that when staff enjoy the interactions (interaction enjoyment) with their colleagues from different cultural backgrounds because; they feel interested in the relationship with their colleagues and the hotel at large; they come to engage in more OCB. Illustratively, it was stated that when an employee finds the relationship with colleagues as interesting, he or she cannot ignore another with excess workload (altruism). This is because; it will appear as a disappointment on the part of the colleague and the management since it is not expected. That this positive feeling makes them warn one another of impending mistakes (courtesy) so that their colleagues do not get into such a trouble. In addition, they reported that they try as much as possible to go by the rules and regulations of the hotel (civic virtue) because; they feel that they are under obligation to portray their hotels as better and worthwhile entities.

The respondents reported further that they felt satisfied with their relationship with colleagues and the employers as hotels. In response, they are under obligation to address any minor problems they face during the process of doing their work other than complain to management at all times (sportsmanship). The satisfaction with their relationship with colleagues has made them not only help those burdened by work (altruism), but also being obedient to hotel rules and regulations (conscientiousness) as well as warn one another of impending mistakes (courtesy) because of the effect one’s mistake may have on the overall performance of the hotel.

Respondents further reported that every time they are focused on the relationship with their employer (interaction attentiveness); they have in turn been able to help their colleagues that are burdened by work (altruism), they cannot leave them to commit mistakes (courtesy), always help them to address their minor work challenges before they can complain to management (sportsmanship) and aggressively try as much as possible to live according to the rules and regulations of the hotel. Therefore, they make sure that they are focused on their work and nothing else during their shifts since they do not need to be embarrassed and probably lose their jobs because of inability to take care of their colleagues and customers.

These results support the thrusts of the social exchange theory (Cropanzano & Mitchell, 2005). This is because, according to this theory when there is reciprocity and parties in a social exchange do not take one another for granted, voluntary behavoiurs will exist within a framework in which parties relate with each other well regardless of their cultural differences.

Conclusion

On the basis of the foregoing findings about the study hypothesis, it can be deduced that Intercultural Sensitivity predicts Organizational Citizenship behaviour of the Uganda hotels’ staff. This means that when employees of Uganda hotels respect their colleagues that do not come from the same cultural backgrounds and interact with them freely, they can easily engage in more Organizational citizenship behaviour.

Theoretical implications

Overall, the social exchange theory (Cropanzano & Mitchell, 2005) is still relevant in explaining the engagement in Organizational citizenship behaviour and staff demonstration of Intercultural sensitivity. This is because, according to the study findings, as long as hotel staffs do not discriminate one another on ground of cultural differences to the extent that they interact freely with one another, they are bound to engage in Organizational citizenship behaviour.

Methodological implications

This study established that the administration of both the quantitative and qualitative research methodology provides an opportunity to strike a compromise on the same opinion so as to allow for trust to be reflected in the nature of findings. Therefore, the administration of a mixed study design to future studies on Organizational citizenship behaviour is recommended because, it strikes a balanced opinion on the reality of OCB.

Policy implications

There is need for policy makers to appreciate the components of organization citizenship behaviour in the formulation of essential policies that govern the smooth functioning of Uganda hotels. For instance, human resource management policies need to tap into staff that are willing to be altruistic, courteous, and sportsmen among others. Furthermore, there is need for policies to consider the need to eliminate discrimination on the basis of cultural differences. This is because; this tendency amongst staff has the potential to affect their innovativeness and productivity.

Managerial implications

Since Organizational citizenship behaviour is relevant in fostering organizational efficiency and effectiveness, there is need for management of hotels to ensure that these behaviours are permeated throughout hotel establishments with a view to laying a foundation for their growth and development. This is because, they are productive in nature

There is need for management to ensure that hotel staff do not discriminate one another on the basis of cultural differences. This is because; it has been proven that this practice paves way for the pervasion of an environment that nurtures staff engagement in Organizational citizenship behaviour.

Limitations and suggestions for future research

As is associated with any other study, this study encountered some weaknesses that did not however, affect the nature of the findings. These are as follows:

The OCB instrument that the study used was simply adapted. This is because; it contains dimensions and items that were developed by scholars from the western world. This means that the instruments did not entirely reflect the cultural orientations of Uganda hotels’ staff. In order to manage this limitation, we sought for the qualitative understanding of the constructs and after validating them, the study generated meaningful findings. Nevertheless, future studies need to focus on the evolution of OCB operationalization and measurement from the context of common cultural traits in the developing world. This will come a long way in aiding the derivation of more understanding and explanation of OCB.

This study was purely cross sectional in nature because; the data was collected at a particular point in time. However, since OCB is like any other behaviour, it has the capacity to evolve across a long period of time. A mixed methods approach was useful in triangulating the responses and a convergence on what OCB is and its explanation was reached in such a short period of time. However, there is need for future scholars to undertake a longitudinal study so that they can be able to track progress of this behaviour. Probably, new findings could emerge.

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About the Authors

Gukiina Joshua is a Ugandan scholar, who holds a BA (SS) of Makerere University, A PGD in Human Resource Management of Busoga University, A Master of Human Resource Management of Kampala International University and a PhD in Human Resource Management of Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda. He is a lecturer at the Makerere University Business School, Jinja Campus, Department of Marketing and Management.

Professor Juma Waswa Balunywa is a scholar in management, leadership and entrepreneurship. He is also an academic administrator, who serves as the Principal of Makerere University Business School (MUBS), a public institution of higher education in Uganda. Balunywa holds a Bachelors of Commerce degree obtained in 1979 from the University of Delhi in India. He also has a Master of Business Administration, also awarded by the same University in 1981. His Doctor of Philosophy in Entrepreneurship was awarded in 2009, by the University of Stirling, in the United Kingdom

Professor Dr. Joseph Ntayi - is a distinguished international scholar, consultant and practitioner with proven professional and ethical track record in: Microfinance, Savings and Credit Cooperatives, Corporate Governance, Public Administration and Management, Project Management, research, application software (e.g Linear Structural Relations [LISREL], Analysis of Moment Structures [AMOS], SPSS, Nvivo, LINDO, HLM, PLS etc), Organizational Development and Restructuring, progress out of poverty, ICT for Development, Gender Mainstreaming, Public Sector Administration, Leadership and Governance, Business Ethics, Education, Strategic Marketing, Curriculum Development and Review, Training and Assessment and Strategy. He holds the following academic and professional qualifications: Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Dip M; MCIM, MILT, International Postgraduate diploma in Project Management, Master of Business Administration (MBA), Bachelor of Commerce [(B.Com) (Hons)] and The Maastricht School of Management Executive Program award in Management, specializing in Project Identification, Development and Management. Professor Dr. Ntayi is a certified WTO/ITC trainer in Textiles and Clothing, e-procurement, social performance management (SPM) and progress out of poverty index (PPI ), Cooperative Governance Mechanisms, SACCOs and Microfinance Governance, Institutional framing and schemas, SACCOs and Microfinance Darwinism, public administration, urban development and management and a professional case writer and developer. In 2010, Joseph Ntayi, won the second best paper award during the fourth international public procurement conference that was held in Soeul, Korea. In 2010 and 2012, Joseph received meritorious awards in recognition for his outstanding contribution to the academic research effort at Makerere University Business School. In 2013, Professor Dr. Joseph Ntayi and Dr. Sunday A. Khan won a grant from Trust Africa IDRC/CRDI to be the technical editors of the book “Opportunities and Challenges of the Ugandan Business Environment – A situational analysis. The book was published in November 2014 and was launched in Early February 2015.

Professor A Ahiauzu holds a first degree in Sociology from the University of Nigeria. Nsukka, a Master degree in Organizational Sociology and Doctorate degree in Organizational Behaviour from Birmingham: University of Aston Management Centre. His career has been fully devoted to academia. He has worked for national and international Universities as lecturer and researcher. He was the Vice - Chancellor of the Rivers State University of Science and Technology, Port Harcourt, Nigeria between 1989-1996. Currently, he is the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the International Centre for Management Research and Training based in Port Harcourt, Nigeria. He is at the moment involved in teaching and research in the field of cultures and indigenous management thought, and serves as E-AMARC Research, Training and Consulting Advisor on Indigenous Management and Development.

Authors’ Address

Joshua Gukiina
Makerere University Business School, Jinja Campus, Department of Marketing and Management, Uganda
Email: gukiina_gukiina@yahoo.com

Joseph Mpeera Ntayi
Makerere University Business School, Faculty of Business Computing, Uganda
Email: jntayius@gmail.com

Waswa Balunywa
Makerere University Business School, Uganda
Email: jwbalunywa@hotmail.com

Augustine Ahiauzu
River State University of Science & Technology, Port Harcourt, Nigeria
Email: ahiauzuaugustine@yahoo.com