Organizational Commitment: Definition, Indicators & How to Build

Commitment in the Organization – In carrying out daily activities, we cannot be separated from the name of the organization. Whether it’s in the form of companies, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), trade unions, neighborhood associations, and others like that. In order for the organization to run as expected, it requires commitment from each individual involved. Without commitment, the course of the organization will be lame. So, how is the commitment in the organization?

Definition of Organizational Commitment

In the Big Indonesian Dictionary, commitment can be interpreted as an attachment to doing something. Commitment can be proven by the existence of alignments or tendencies because they feel they have a bond with something, be it a relationship, promise, work, trust, activities, and so on. Commitment describes the meaning of responsibility.

Commitment is very important for someone to have. The depth of one’s commitment can measure the amount of consistency and responsibility, whether in conditions that are easy or difficult, happy or difficult, light or heavy. Without commitment, there will be no consistency.

A good organization consists of highly committed people. The higher the value of commitment from each individual, the better the achievement of the organization. Committed people always give their best for what they are committed to.

Commitment in the organization can be interpreted as an attitude or behavior that is displayed by someone towards the organization by proving loyalty to achieve the vision, mission, values ​​and goals of the organization. Loyalty is formed because of mutual trust, emotional closeness, and alignment of expectations between members and the organization. Therefore, a member has a strong desire to remain an important part of the organization.

This definition is an abbreviated understanding of several definitions that have been submitted by experts. There are many experts who define organizational commitment that you can refer to. The following are some definitions of organizational commitment that we present to you.

1. Greenberg and Baron

In their journal published in 2003, Jerald Greenberg and Robert A. Baron define organizational commitment as the degree or measure in which an employee is involved in the course of his organization. He also has a desire to remain a part of it. During his time as part of the organization, he showed loyalty and willingness to work optimally.

2. Steers and Porters

Richard M. Steers and Lyman W. Porter define organizational commitment as the attitude of an employee in identifying himself with the goals and expectations of the organization. He did this identification to adjust to what the organization wanted. He also tries to maintain organizational membership to achieve common goals.

3. McShane and Von Glinow

Both said organizational commitment has a very strong influence in the organization. Someone will identify a demand that exists and he is motivated to make it happen, even when the source of motivation is no longer there.

4. Allen and Meyer

Both of these experts say that organizational commitment can be described in the form of emotional closeness, involvement, and individual identification in the operational implementation of the organization. This emotional closeness encourages a member to still want to be part of the organization.

Dimensions of Organizational Commitment

Organizational commitment has several different dimensions. Each dimension has a variety of explanations. The following are dimensions of organizational commitment that you need to know.

1. According to Allen and Mayer

Allen and Mayer divide organizational commitment into three dimensions, namely:

a. Affective Commitment

This commitment is guided by the emotional connection between members and the organization. Members have a strong desire to continue working within the organization because they have aligned goals and values. People who have high affective commitment want to stay there so that they fully support the goals of the organization and try to play a role in the progress of the organization.

This type of commitment relies on a sense of love for the organization. The will to survive arose from within their own hearts. There is no compulsion to survive.

b. Continuance Commitment

This commitment encourages someone to stay in the organization because of the profit or loss analysis they get. The economic value that is felt to be beneficial will encourage employees to remain in the organization rather than leaving it. In general, the longer a person has worked in an organization, the greater the fear of losing what has been invested so far.

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This commitment makes someone to think again if they want to leave the organization. Leaving the organization will make life’s burden even heavier due to cost considerations. Plus the investment in the form of participation in the progress of the organization will simply disappear if he leaves the organization.

c. Normative Commitment

Someone has this commitment because they are burdened with the obligation to remain in the organization due to pressure from other parties. Employees with high levels of normative commitment are very concerned about what other people say about them. He didn’t want to disappoint his boss and was afraid that his co-workers would have bad thoughts because of his resignation.

In general, research has shown that employees with strong affective commitment decide to stay because they want to. While employees with high continuance commitment choose to stay because they have to live together there.

2. According to Curtis and Wright

Organizational commitment is divided into three dimensions, namely:

  • Desire to remain a member of the organization.
  • Believe in and accept the values ​​and goals of the organization.
  • Ready to work hard wholeheartedly to contribute to the progress of the organization.



Benefits of Organizational Commitment

The existence of strong organizational commitment is certainly beneficial for many parties. Both members of the organization and the organization that oversees each benefit. Among the benefits obtained are:

  • Organizational members will work in totality.
  • The initiative of the members of the organization for high organizational progress will give birth to many innovations.
  • A dynamic work environment makes the atmosphere not monotonous or boring.
  • The level of solidarity is high, both among members and between departments, so as to create an atmosphere that works hand in hand.
  • Members feel comfortable so they feel happy.
  • Organizational members are willing to do their best, even when the source of motivation is no longer there.
  • The organization becomes a missed place.
  • Organizations thrive because the people in them are happy and responsible.

Factors Influencing Organizational Commitment

Organizational commitment certainly varies from one organization to another. The difference is due to the causal factors. This time we will discuss the factors that influence commitment in the organization.

1. Individual Characteristics

The characteristics referred to this time are divided into two types, namely demographic characteristics and dispositional characteristics. Demographic characteristics include age, gender , marital status, education level, ethnicity, and the length of time a person has worked in the organization. While dispositional characteristics include personality and values ​​maintained by members of the organization.

Dispositional characteristic factors have a stronger influence on organizational commitment. Because personality and values ​​are fundamental and motivate someone to work. Like a word, aging is certain but being mature is a choice.

Organizations where the majority are filled with people who carry positive values ​​such as being honest, loyal, willing to learn, agile, flexible, and polite, of course, are more likely to have high organizational commitment. These values ​​will dominate the organization. Thus, the organization is filled with people who are highly committed.

Conversely, an organization whose majority is filled with people who are lazy, dishonest, opportunistic, unwilling to develop, rigid, and impolite will produce a negative environment. The atmosphere will dominate the organization. Finally the organization is filled with people with low organizational commitment.

2. Organizational Characteristics

Organizational characteristics become an important factor affecting commitment in the organization. Things that are included in the character of the organization are the vision, mission, goals, organizational structure, policy design, and policy outreach. These characteristics shape the people within them thereby influencing how committed they are to their organization.

The aligned vision, mission and goals between members and the organization form a strong and deep organizational commitment. The stronger the commitment within the organization, the more positive the influence on the running of the organization. Therefore, aligning the vision, mission and goals is an important step to be carried out continuously.

The three points above are not enough to foster commitment within the organization without being accompanied by a wise policy. A good goal is not enough just to be a goal. Good goals need to be realized through policies that are implemented wisely as well.

3. Organizational Experience

In addition to organizational characteristics, organizational experience in carrying out its activities also influences organizational commitment. Organizations with mature experience in implementing policies are easier to create a conducive atmosphere. This will affect the quality of organizational commitment for the better.

The positive result of a mature organizational experience is the satisfaction of its members. This satisfaction encourages members to always be involved in efforts to progress the organization. Not only that, interpersonal relationships are also more intimate, even among staff, supervisors, managers, to directors.

Organizational Commitment Indicator

Commitment to the organization is usually measured by instruments that go through testing. Some experts try to develop instruments that can measure the level of commitment of a person or team to their organization. The measurement is carried out by converting qualitative data to quantitative data so that a measurable value is obtained.

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However, there are some universal indicators that you can use. These indicators are in the form of qualitative assessments. Organizations whose members have high commitment can be shown by strong trust and acceptance of organizational goals, a strong will to advance the organization, and a desire to retain members in the organization.



How to Build Organizational Commitment

After understanding the definitions, factors, dimensions, and indicators of organizational commitment, it is incomplete if we don’t talk about ways to build commitment. Some of the steps below are recommendations recommended by Gary Dessler, an expert in human resources management .

1. Make It Charismatic

The most fundamental in the organization is the vision, mission, goals, and values. For those of you who are currently leading an organization, it is important for you to make the basic guidelines of the organization something sacred, charismatic, and of high value. The basic foundation of the organization must earn the respect of its members.

2. Build the Tradition

Positive values ​​in the organization should be maintained and cultivated so that they become habits that should be emulated by the next generation. This habit will give birth to a positive tradition as well. A positive tradition within the organization will give birth to people with great character, all of which will benefit the organization.

3. Have Comprehensive Grievance Procedures

Complaints or complaints about the organization’s products or services may occur. Both from internal and external parties. Preparing the right steps in handling complaints can foster organizational commitment because the organization has clear guidelines.

4. Create a Sense of Community

Creating a sense of belonging within the organization is essential for organizational commitment to form. You need to do things that are unique, effective, efficient, and maybe a little out of the box to form a sense of togetherness, cooperation, sense of belonging, sharing and more. All of that is important so that work in the organization is not just a mere task formality.

5. Build Value Homogeneity

It is undeniable that discrimination can hamper the positive growth of an organization. Building an egalitarian (all are equal) yet respectful culture is one way you can build organizational commitment in your team. For example, everyone has the same rights and opportunities to get a promotion, which is based on ability, contribution, work performance, diligence, acuity of vision, and interest.

6. Support Employee Development

The staff or people you lead are essentially not just people you can order according to your wishes. They are the people who are entrusted to you for you to cultivate so that they have a great contribution to the organization. By looking at it from that perspective, you will pay more attention to development as staff and as people.

The more he is given the opportunity to develop himself, the higher the value of his contribution to the company. Not only that, his respect for you will grow even greater. If that’s the case, then his commitment to the organization will form by itself.

7. Put in Writing

Avoiding “he said” without accurate data is a great way to develop a good work ethic in an organization. The culture of following “he said” reduces the ability to do analysis, investigation, development, and discipline. Data regarding vision, mission, history, philosophy, policies, calculations, forecasts, and strategies is very important to write down so that members work based on written data, not just “what they said”.

8. Here Right-Kind Managers

Many people don’t work for organizations, but for their managers. The quality of work of the majority members is influenced by the quality of the manager. The members’ commitments are no exception.

A good leader does not only use his authority in leading. He will use his authority as a leader to protect his members. In leading, he will use his charisma more, rather than using his skills or authority.

Leaders or managers with leadership skills like this will be liked by many members. As a result, members of the organization feel comfortable and ready to give their all for the organization. If you have reached that point, the formation of deep commitment within the organization is only a matter of time.

9. Walk the Walk

Sweet words or slogans without implementation will only be a beautiful theory. As a leader, it is very important to set an example for its members in doing something for the organization. Members who see how their leader does it will be moved to follow the same path.


The conclusion in this discussion is that commitment in the organization is very necessary for the progress of the organization itself. Commitment to the organization encourages its members to make an optimal contribution to their organization. Therefore, organizations need to establish a clear vision, mission, objectives and policies so that this commitment is formed.

There are many ways that you as a leader can do so that organizational commitment is formed. Being a leader is not only about how you give orders to the people you lead, but also about how you can develop their value as a human being. The existence of positive reciprocity between the organization and members fosters a strong commitment from members to the organizations they follow.