Focus on hospitality employee turnover.
Wednesday, 22nd August 2012
Source : Cornell Center for Hospitality Research
A new study from Cornell's Center for Hospitality Research (CHR) at the School of Hotel Administration pins down the corrosive effects of negative employee attitudes on hospitality employee turnover.

Cornell Report Highlights the Effects of Employee Attitudes on Turnover

Hospitality managers have long suspected that there's a connection between the industry's high turnover and employee attitudes. A new report from the Cornell Center for Hospitality Research focuses on how that connection works. The report has found that co-workers' attitudes over time play a large role in whether a person leaves or not. The study, "The Contagion Effect: Understanding the Impact of Changes in Individual and Work Unit Satisfaction on Hospitality Industry Turnover," by Timothy Hinkin, Brooks Holtom, and Dong Liu, explains the results of a two-year longitudinal study examining the effects on employee turnover resulting from the change in individual and unit levels of satisfaction.

Hinkin is the Georges and Marian St. Laurent Professor of Applied Management at the Cornell School of Hotel Administration, Holtom is an associate professor at the McDonough School of Business at Georgetown University, and Liu is an assistant professor at the Ernest Scheller Jr. College of Business at Georgia Institute of Technology.

"We collected data from 5,270 employees in 175 locations of a diversified hospitality company," said Hinkin. "One key finding was that when employees' attitudes in a particular unit converge, it's hard for a single individual to withstand that attitude. This can be termed a 'contagion effect.' So, as the work environment becomes more positive and overall satisfaction in the unit increases over time, fewer individuals leave their jobs. Even unhappy employees are lifted by a coherently positive environment."

In contrast, when workers' attitudes vary substantially, a general increase in satisfaction has little effect on an individual's satisfaction or turnover plans. Hinkin and his co-authors advise managers to track changes in employee satisfaction over time and be aware of the variance or dispersion of attitudes.

A group of employees whose level of satisfaction is simultaneously converging and declining is a sign of impending increases in turnover. In this situation, you'll find that the best employees can always leave.

The report is available at no charge from the CHR at:


About The Center for Hospitality Research
A unit of the Cornell School of Hotel Administration, The Center for Hospitality Research (CHR) sponsors research designed to improve practices in the hospitality industry. Under the lead of the center's 78 corporate affiliates, experienced scholars work closely with business executives to discover new insights into strategic, managerial and operating practices. The center also publishes the award-winning hospitality journal, the Cornell Hospitality Quarterly.

To learn more about the center and its projects, visit www.chr.cornell.edu

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