The Effect of Internal Marketing on Organizational Commitment: Job Involvement and Job Satisfaction as Mediators

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  • http://eaq.sagepub.com/Quarterly

    Educational Administration

    http://eaq.sagepub.com/content/47/2/353The online version of this article can be found at:

    DOI: 10.1177/0013161X10387589November 2010

    2011 47: 353 originally published online 5Educational Administration QuarterlyShueh-Chin Ting

    Involvement and Job Satisfaction as MediatorsThe Effect of Internal Marketing on Organizational Commitment: Job

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    - Nov 5, 2010 OnlineFirst Version of Record

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  • Educational Administration Quarterly47(2) 353382

    The University Council forEducational Administration 2011

    Reprints and permission: http://www.sagepub.com/journalsPermissions.nav

    DOI: 10.1177/0013161X10387589http://eaq.sagepub.com

    387589 EAQ

    1Graduate Institute of Educational Entrepreneurship and Management, National University of Tainan, Taiwan

    Corresponding Author:Shueh-Chin TingEmail: tingsc@ms49.hinet.net

    The Effect of Internal Marketing on Organizational Commitment: Job Involvement and Job Satisfaction as Mediators

    Shueh-Chin Ting1

    Abstract

    Purpose: After reviewing previous research, this study found that few school or educational studies have simultaneously explored both internal marketing and organizational commitment, and of those that have, only direct effects were examined. This study clarifies the relationship between school organiza-tions internal marketing and teachers organizational commitment by exami-ning the mediating role of teachers job involvement and job satisfaction. Research Methods: The participants in the study were 275 elementary school teachers. This is an empirical study based on questionnaire surveys. A nested model and structural equation modeling (SEM) were used for analy-sis. Findings: The results show that internal marketing, job involvement, and job satisfaction all have a direct impact on organizational commitment. Moreover, job involvement and job satisfaction play partial mediating roles in the relationship between internal marketing and organizational commit-ment. Implications: Research implications are that we cannot neglect the effect of job involvement and job satisfaction in explaining the relationship between school organizations internal marketing and teachers organizational commitment.

    Article

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  • 354 Educational Administration Quarterly 47(2)

    Keywords

    internal marketing, job involvement, job satisfaction, organizational commitment, teacher

    Barnes, Fox, and Morris (2004) suggested that marketing has traditionally concentrated on external customers but in recent years has begun to emphasize the need to understand internal customers and their relationships with the organization and external customers. Internal marketing is a perquisite for successful external marketing. By satisfying the needs of its internal customers, the organization becomes a whole with its employees; in turn, employees want to satisfy the needs of the external customers.

    Internal marketing, which is derived from marketing management in the service industry, emphasizes that organizations should treat, value, and respect employees from an internal customers perspective (Longbottom, OsseoAsare, Chourides, & Murphy, 2006) to attract, develop, motivate, and retain qualified employees (Berry & Parasuraman, 1991). Internal marketing is important to organizations because it is related to employees job satisfaction and organizational commitment (Sihombing & Gustam, 2007). According to Ham (2003), schools rarely systematically monitor and pay attention to internal customers (teachers) needs; thus, there may be gaps between the schools operations and the teachers expectations, as well tangible and intangible losses. Schools are a location for the cultivation of talents and teachers are one of the schools most important assets. In order for teachers to commit to their school, this study believes the concept of internal marketing, originating from business, deserves an infusion into educational leadership. Thus, it is an important issue for schools to understand the influence of internal marketing on teachers.

    Kushman (1992) suggested that teachers are critical to schools and their identification with the organization and devotion are essential factors that enhance school efficacy. The teachers commitment to a school reveals their identification with and devotion to the organization. Chien and Lin (2002) suggested that teachers with more organizational commitment perform better, have a significant emotional attachment to the school, and put forth greater efforts to accomplish the organizational objectives. According to related research, internal marketing is aimed at satisfying internal customers needs in order to obtain organizational employees commitment (Longbottom et al., 2006). In other words, internal marketing positively influences organizational commitment (Caruana & Calleya, 1998; Hogg, 1996). Although internal marketing has an influence on employees organizational commitment, this study believes that the influence is not a direct relationship of input/output or

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    stimulation/reaction but involves the transformation process of mediators. Baron and Kenny (1986) indicated that all active organisms could be actively involved in the process of input/output or stimulation/reaction and the process could influence their individual behaviors and performance through transformation. In other words, there is little empirical evidence of a positive relationship between internal marketing and organizational commitment. There is even less research examining the mechanics of this relationship. Thus, by treating organizational internal marketing as an input and organizational commitment as an output, this study wants to understand the transformation process between input and output. Therefore, this study searches for mediators to explain the transformation process.

    First, in terms of job satisfaction, internal marketing treats employees as customers and their works as products in order to satisfy internal customers demands and needs (Sihombing & Gustam, 2007). Thus, it is reasonable to believe that internal marketing could lead to job satisfaction (Bansal, Mendelson, & Sharma, 2001). Hogg (1996) suggested that internal marketing is the best approach to obtain employees organizational commitment. According to Rafiq and Ahmed (2000), Collins and Payne (1991), and Tansuhaj, Randall, and McCullough (1991), organizational internal marketing could enhance employees job satisfaction and organizational commitment. Unfortunately, few studies have examined whether internal marketing directly or indirectly influences organizational commitment through job satisfaction.

    Second, in terms of job involvement, Cheloha and Farr (1980) as well as Rabinowitz and Hall (1977) indicated that job involvement is positively related to job satisfaction. Lee, Carswell, and Allen (2000) indicated that there is a positive correlation between job involvement and organizational commitment. Brown (1996) suggested that job involvement could influence both job satisfaction and organizational commitment at the same time. Thus, there is a close relationship among job involvement, job satisfaction, and organizational commitment. Since job involvement and job satisfaction are related to organizational commitment, if the predication of organizational commitment only depends on job involvement and job satisfaction, it would possibly result in a spurious phenomenon, as suggested by Williams and Anderson (1991). Thus, when studying the influence of internal marketing on organizational commitment through job satisfaction, it is necessary to consider job involvement.

    The review of literature suggests that only a few studies have probed into internal marketing and organizational commitment, and those that have mostly focused only on the direct relationship, such as Bansal et al. (2001) and Farzad, Nahavandi, and Caruana (2008), but the studies regarding the mediating eff ects are very few. Thus, the purpose of this study is, from the perspective of an overall

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    model, to probe into the path of influence of internal marketing strategies of schools on organizational commitment of teachers by including teachers job involvement and satisfaction in the mediating process.

    Teachers of public elementary schools in Taiwan were used as the empirical targets for this research. The Taiwan factor is important because it has some specific characteristics. All public elementary schools in Taiwan have to follow the national curriculum standards, using approved textbooks. Under the educational system in Taiwan, many aspects of teachers jobs have been clearly stipulated and defined so that the Taiwanese teachers have lacked the autonomy to develop their own curriculum and instructional plans (Fwu & Wang, 2002).

    Literature ReviewInternal Marketing

    Internal marketing is an application of marketing philosophy and method with the purpose of stimulating employees to complete the tasks (Greene, Walls, & Schrest, 1994). Palmer (2001) defined internal marketing as the application of the principles and practices of marketing to an organizations dealings with its employees. Internal marketing treats the employee as an internal customer, regards jobs as products, and intends to satisfy the employees demands through products (Longbottom et al., 2006). Kotler and Armstrong (1991) viewed internal marketing as the building of customer orientation among employees by training and motivating both customercontact and support staff to work as a team. Zeithaml and Bitner (2000) indicated that in the Golden Triangle model of service, external marketing aims to construct commitment, interactive marketing aims to fulfill commitment, and internal marketing aims to enhance an employees ability to fulfill commitment. Although external and interactive marketing are important, internal marketing places greater value on internal employees human resources management and applications. Gronroos (1994) asserted that without active and continuous internal marketing efforts, the interactive marketing impact on customers will deteriorate, service quality will suffer, and customers will start to defect with negative effects on profitability as a result. Gummesson (2000) suggested that internal marketing is a strategic operation that combines marketing and human resources management in order for firstline service personnel to provide the best service when interacting with customers. Joseph (1996) suggested that internal marketing motivates, mobilizes, recruits, and manages employees by using marketing and human resource management approaches to continuously improve services to employees, which was consistent with Kotler and Levy (1969), who defined internal marketing as follows: firms successfully hire, train,

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    and motivate employees to provide better service to customers. In summary, internal marketing embraces the notion that a company should treat its internal employees as external customers in satisfying their needs. Thus, through management satisfying the needs of internal customers, employees become more motivated and committed to the company, which leads to ext ernal customers being well served (Barnes et al., 2004).

    Many academic studies in the internal marketing literature identified key elements of internal marketing, including Conduit and Mavondos (2001) market training and education, management support, internal communication, personnel management, and employee involvement in external communication; Ahmed, Rafiq, and Saads (2003) top management support, business process support, and crossfunctional coordination; Tsai and Tangs (2008) service training programs, performance incentives, and vision for service excellence. After reviewing these studies and focusing on Conduit and Mavondos (2001) dimensions, this study developed four dimensions to measure internal marketing as support, motivation, communication, and training.

    Organizational CommitmentIn the field of organizational behavior, organizational commitment is an important influential variable on an organization. Steers (1977) suggested that organizational commitment is valued for the following reasons: (1) organizational commitment can predict employee turnover, (2) employees with high levels of organizational commitment perform better at work, and (3) organizational commitment could be an index to predict organizational efficacy. Organizational commitment is a psychological state of identifying with an organization (Buchanan, 1974). The employees identification with an organization could be regarded as their psychological attachment to the organization (OReilly & Chatman, 1986). Mowday, Porter, and Steers (1982) suggested that when there is a positive connection between individuals and their organization (i.e., high level of individual commitment to their organization) it leads to good results for individuals, organizations, and society. Thus, the teachers commitment could be a bridge between individuals and their school. When teachers have a high level of commitment to their school, it means that they are involved and devoted.

    Hypothesis DevelopmentDirect relationship between internal marketing and organizational commitment.

    Internal marketing could motivate an employees sense of belonging and identification (Kudo, Satoh, Hosoi, Miki, Watanabe, & Kido, 2006). According to

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    Makanjee, Hartzer, and Uys (2006), there is a positive correlation between internal marketing and organizational commitment. Hogg (1996) suggested that when traditional internal communications cannot function, internal marketing is the best approach to obtain an employees organizational commitment. Therefore, internal marketing positively influences organizational commitment (Bansal et al., 2001; Farzad et al., 2008). Based on the above, this study proposes the first hypothesis:

    Hypothesis 1: Internal marketing has a direct and positive influence on organizational commitment.

    In order to probe into the mediating effects of job involvement and job satisfaction on the relationship between internal marketing and organizational commitment, and according to Baron and Kenny (1986), this study first identified significant correlations between independent variables and mediators, and between mediators and dependent variables, and then elaborated on the effect of mediators on the relationship between independent and dependent variables.

    Direct relationship among internal marketing, job involvement, job satisfaction, and organizational commitment. Regarding the influence of internal marketing on organizational commitment, job involvement and job satisfaction are two critical variables. Job involvement is an employees psychological identification with his or her current work (Knoop, 1995), or devotion to his or her work (Brooke, Russell, & Price, 1988). Job satisfaction is individual satisfaction with work and an index by which they judge whether they would stay at the job (Thatcher, Stepina, & Boyle, 2003). Job satisfaction is a pleasant or active feeling based on evaluation of the employees work and work experience.

    As to job involvement, organizations are interested in learning how the organization influences or changes employees behaviors through internal marketing. In fact, organizations could gradually develop employee attitude and change employee behaviors through internal marketing. Job involvement reveals an attitude toward work and the psychological identification with (Knoop, 1995) or devotion to their jobs (Brooke et al., 1988). Blau (1985) suggested that job involvement means that individuals subjectively identify with their jobs, care about their work, and treat their jobs as a focus of their life. They recognize that work can satisfy their needs; therefore, it is a key part of a healthy psychological life. Internal marketing treats employees as customers and jobs as products, which results in an employees sense of belonging and identification (Kudo et al., 2006). Hence, internal marketing could be regarded as an antecedent factor of individual job involvement. Thus, this study proposes the second hypothesis:

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    Hypothesis 2: Internal marketing has a direct and positive influence on job involvement.

    Brown (1996) indicated that job involvement could influence organizational commitment. However, according to Knoop (1995), there is a moderating relationship between job involvement and organizational commitment. Lee et al. (2000) suggested that only job involvement with job satisfaction would affect organizational commitment. Therefore, there are different views with regard to the relationship between job involvement and organizational commitment, and further study and validation is necessary. Thus, this study proposes the third hypothesis:

    Hypothesis 3: Job involvement has a direct and positive influence on organizational commitment.

    Given that internal marketing can satisfy employees demands, this study suggests that internal marketing would result in employees job satisfaction. Shimizu, Feng, and Nagata (2005) suggested that employees job satisfaction reveals their overall subjective evaluation of the work environment. It reflects whether the organization has successfully met the employees needs for techniques, value, and achievement, and functions as an index to judge the fairness and legitimacy of organizational rules. Berry and Parasuraman (1991) indicated that internal marketing is aimed at satisfying internal employees needs through jobs (products). Theoretically, internal marketing treats employees as internal customers, adjusting the work to be internal products of satisfying internal customers needs and meeting organizational objectives by marketing the internal products to the employees (Berry, 1981). The implementation of internal marketing in organizations can not only enhance employee job satisfaction but also influence employee behavior (Tansuhaj et al., 1991). Thus, this study proposes the fourth hypothesis:

    Hypothesis 4: Internal marketing has a direct and positive influence on job satisfaction.

    Job satisfaction is a critical predictor with regard to the employees attitude and behavior and is related to organizational commitment (Brooke et al., 1988; Freund, 2005; Meyer, Stanley, Herscovitch, & Topolnytsky, 2002). Most studies have supported the perspective that job satisfaction will influence organizational commitment (Lin, 2003; Mowday et al., 1982; Williams & Hazer, 1986) since the concept of job satisfaction is microcosmic, whereas organizational

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    commitment is macroscopic (Farrell & Rusbult, 1981; Williams & Hazer, 1986). In other words, the targets (e.g., salary, welfare, or the work place) of job satisfaction are limited, and organizational commitment refers to the overall cognition of the organization (Mowday et al., 1982). Hence, job satisfaction is regarded as an antecedent to organizational commitment. Thus, this study proposes the fifth hypothesis:

    Hypothesis 5: Job satisfaction has a direct and positive influence on organizational commitment.

    Job involvement and job satisfaction are closely related; however, they are different work attitudes (Cheloha & Farr, 1980). Saleh and Hosek (1976) suggested that work performance and experience would influence the employees feelings. Thus, job satisfaction could be regarded as an outcome variable of job involvement. Thus, this study proposes the sixth hypothesis:

    Hypothesis 6: Job involvement has a direct and positive influence on job satisfaction.

    Mediating effects of job involvement and job satisfaction on the relationship between internal marketing and organizational commitment. As discussed above, internal marketing has a direct and positive influence on job involvement and job satisfaction, and job involvement and job satisfaction have a direct and positive influence on organizational commitment. Will job involvement and job satisfaction reveal mediating effects? This study assumes that according to the SOR (stimulationorganismreaction) model suggested by Woodworth (1928), in the process of internal marketing as a stimulation and organizational commitment as a reaction, humans are organisms with expectations, motivations, and judgments. Facing external stimulation, the individuals first transform it through expectations, motivations, and judgments and then choose reactions. In other words, if organizational internal marketing cannot result in an employees high level of job involvement and job satisfaction, the employees would not respond with organizational commitment. Reviewing Vrooms (1964) job involvement expectation theory, Kanungos (1982) job involvement motivation model, and Adamss (1963) equity theory, all revealed that after an employee receives the actions of organizational internal marketing, no positive reaction is guaranteed. There is a weak relationship between internal marketing and organizational commitment. Successful internal marketing should enhance employees job satisfaction by marketing and human resources management strategies to influence employees behaviors, and thus, the employees would be proud of being part of the organization. Only when

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    internal marketing results in employees job involvement and job satisfaction would the employees show organizational commitment. Thus, previous studies tended to probe into the direct relationship between internal marketing and organizational commitment because mediating variables were unknown. Therefore, this study suggests that there are mediating effects of job involvement and job satisfaction on the relationship between internal marketing and organizational commitment, respectively. Thus, this study proposes the seventh hypothesis:

    Hypothesis 7: Job involvement and job satisfaction reveal mediating effects on the relationship between internal marketing and organizational commitment.

    Research MethodResearch Framework

    This study aims to propose a generalized theoretical framework to elaborate on the influence process of internal marketing on organizational commitment and, in particular, probes into possible roles of job involvement and job satisfaction in the influence process of internal marketing on organizational commitment. The construction of structure parameters in this study is shown in Figure 1.

    Sample and Data CollectionTo test the model, this study used survey data collected from the teachers of public elementary schools from Tainan in Taiwan. Based on the ratio of the average number of teachers under different school sizes, this study used a stratified probability sampling procedure to select 386 teachers. Of these 386, this study obtained valid data from 275.

    Although the data of this study are just from Tainan, it can be representative at the national level (Taiwan). The structures of sample and national level (Taiwan) are described as follows:

    Gender. Eightfive were male (31%) and 190 were female (69%); female teachers greatly outnumbered male teachers similar to the Taiwan national statistics published by the Department of Statistics, Ministry of Education. Among the 100,319 teachers in public elementary schools at this same time, 32,142 were male (32%) and 68,177 were female (68%).

    Years of service. Fortynine people (17.7%) had less than 5 years of service, 70 people (25.3%) had more than 5 years but less than 10 years, 114 people (41.6%) had more than 10 years but less than 20 years, and 42 people (15.4%)

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    had more than 20 years of service, which resembles the Taiwan statistics published by the Department of Statistics, Ministry of Education. According to the statistics published by the Department of Statistics, Ministry of Education, with regard to teachers service years, 26,540 people (26.5%) had less than 5 years, 21,311people (21.2%) had more than 5 years but less than 10 years, 33,699 people (33.6%) had more than 10 years but less than 20 years, and 18,769 people (18.7%) had more than 20 years.

    Educational level. Nine people (3.2%) were in an undergraduate program or below, 229 people (83.2%) were undergraduates, and 37 people (13.6%) completed graduate school (including 40 credit programs). Most of the targets were undergraduate (83.2%), which is consistent with the Taiwan statistics of the Ministry of Education that 3,802 teachers were in an undergraduate

    Figure 1. Structure parameters

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    program or below (3.8%), 84,290 teachers were undergraduates (84.0%), and 12,149 teachers completed graduate school (12.2%).

    School size. Twentynine people (10.5%) had less than 12 classes, 38 people (13.8%) had 13 to 24 classes, 57 people (20.9%) had 25 to 48 classes, and 151 people (54.8%) had more than 49 classes. More than 49 classes (151 people) and 25 to 48 classes (57 people) were most significant (75.7%). As to school size at the Taiwan level, the Ministry of Education did not publish the related statistics, and thus, this research was unable to compare it with the population.

    According to the above, it is clear that with regard to gender, service years, and educational levels, the sample structure of this study is similar to the teachers structure of all public elementary schools in Taiwan. Generally speaking, although the data from this study are limited to Tainan in Taiwan, they can be representative of public elementary school teachers in Taiwan.

    This study evaluated nonresponse biases by comparing early with late respondents, following the procedure suggested by Armstrong and Overton (1977). No significant differences were found with all background and research variables, suggesting that nonresponse bias should not be a problem.

    Definition and Measurement of Research VariablesThis study used the questionnaire as a measurement instrument. Each research variable was measured through multiple items. A preliminary instrument was developed, and five practitioners and five professors in management were asked to review and respond to it. They were asked to provide feedback about face and content validity, wording of the items, and structure of the questionnaire. Only minor changes resulted. Then, this study conducted a pretest with the first draft on 50 teachers based on convenience sampling. The scale of this study was based on a 5point Likerttype scale (1 = strongly disagree; 5 = strongly agree).

    Internal marketing. Based on the views of Tansuhaj et al. (1991), Berry and Parasuraman (1991), and Joseph (1996), this study defined internal marketing as the treatment of teachers as internal customers causing the school to conduct activities that satisfy teachers needs. The measures of internal marketing were designed by referring to Conduit and Mavondo (2001), who categorized internal marketing into five dimensions (i.e., market training and education, management support, internal communication, personnel management, and employee involvement in external communication). Because the general teachers in elementary schools have less necessity for participating in the communication between their school and external people, this study dropped the dimension of employee involvement in external communication. In addition,

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    the dimension of personnel management was renamed motivation because Conduit and Mavondos (2001) personnel management focused on actions (including human resource policies and reward systems) that provided the motivation for employees to adopt new behaviors and attitudes; therefore, this study directly uses motivation to reflect the content of the measure. Finally, this study designed the measure of the internal marketing of elementary schools as follows: training (8 items), support (6 items), communication (6 items), and motivation (5 items). Higher scores refer to higher levels of internal marketing in the schools.

    Job involvement. Referring to Kanungos (1982) view of job involvement, this study defined teacher job involvement with a school as the teachers willingness to be devoted to their work. Based on a scale developed by Lodahl and Kejner (1965) and according to the organizational uniqueness of schools and research purposes, this study modified the scale into five items. Higher scores refer to higher levels of teachers job involvement.

    Job satisfaction. For the definition of job satisfaction, this study adopted the view of Steers (1977), who suggested that job satisfaction is a condition of pleasant or active feelings after an employee evaluates his or her work. In other words, it reflects the level of school employees positive attitude at work. Based on the Job in a General scale (JGS) developed by Ironson, Smith, Brannick, Gibson, and Paul (1989) and according to the organizational uniqueness of schools, this study modified the scale into four items. Higher scores refer to higher levels of teachers job satisfaction.

    Organizational commitment. Organizational commitment in this study is based on the views of Porter, Steers, Mowday, and Boulian (1974), who suggested that organizational commitment is the level of an individuals identification and devotion to a certain organization. This study defined school teachers organizational commitment as follows: The teachers of a school identify with their schools goals, values, and beliefs and are willing to be devoted to and stay with the school. Based on the Organization Commitment Questionnaire (OCQ), developed by Porter et al. (1974), and according to the organizational uniqueness of schools, this study modified the scale into six items. Higher scores refer to higher levels of the teachers organizational commitments.

    Scale Purification and Overall EvaluationPurification measurement. In purification measurements, this study analyzed

    internal marketing, job involvement, job satisfaction, and organizational commitment, respectively, by internal consistency and exploratory factor analysis.

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    First, we analyzed the reliability of the dimensions and eliminated any items with an itemtotal correlation coefficient lower than .3 and items that can enhance Cronbachs if they were deleted, in order to increase Cronbachs . In addition, we conducted exploratory factor analysis on each dimension, ext racted common factors by Principal Component Analysis, and used varimax rotation for common factor orthogonal rotation. According to Hair, Anderson, Tatham, and Black (1998), eigenvalues of the factors should be greater than 1, absolute values of factor loadings of orthogonal rotation of varimax rotation should be greater than .5, and the gap between the two factor loadings should be greater than .3. After completing factor analysis on each dimension and eliminating those items with a factor loading lower than .5 and those items with two factor loadings gap less than .3, we extracted one factor for each dimension; finally, we retained 19 items of internal marketing (7 items for support dimension, 5 items for motivation dimension, 3 items for communication dimension, and 4 items for training dimension), 3 items of job involvement, 4 items of job satisfaction, and 3 items of organizational commitment. These measured items are shown in the appendix. Factor loadings of items were between .62 and .82. Overall explained variance of each dimension was between 56.01% and 85.67%. As to reliability analysis, Cronbachs was between .81 and .89.

    The scale of this study met the criteria suggested by Hair et al. (1998) with regard to factor loading, overall explained variance, and reliability analysis, thus showing good purification results.

    Overall evaluation. Twolevel factor analysis of the Internal Marketing scale showed the following: chisquare = 13.85 (p = .000 < .05), df = 5, GFI = .947, CFI = .924, AGFI = .899, RMR = .046. Although chisquare reached the significance level, it was easily influenced by the sample size, and other fit measures were acceptable. Thus, overall model fit of this scale met the standard.

    Onelevel factor analysis of the Job Involvement scale showed that chisquare = 1.44 (p = .488 > .05), df = 2, GFI = .998, CFI = .999, AGFI = .993, RMR = .013. Overall model fit of this scale met the standard.

    Onelevel factor analysis of the Job Satisfaction scale showed that chisquare = 14.09 (p = .000 < .05), df = 5, GFI = .942, CFI = .924, AGFI = .884, RMR = .032. Chisquare was easily influenced by the sample size. Thus, according to other fit measures, overall model fit of this scale was acceptable.

    Onelevel factor analysis of the Organizational Commitment scale showed that chisquare = 7.70 (p = .021 < .05), df = 5, GFI = .987, CFI = .985, AGFI = .961, RMR = .045. Although chisquare reached the significance level, other fit measures were acceptable. Overall model fit of this scale met the standard.

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    Data Analysis

    This study aimed to probe into the relationship among internal marketing, job involvement, job satisfaction, and organizational commitment. Since regression analysis can only provide simple validation of the relationship among the constructs and cannot provide comprehensive analysis, in order to accurately validate the hypotheses of this study, structural equation modeling (SEM) was adopted to examine the causal relationships among latent variables to validate the hypotheses. Based on the suggestion of Hayduk (1987) and the approach of Niehoff and Moorman (1993), this study adopted a twophase procedure to conduct the analysis: first, simplify twolevel factor model of internal marketing into onelevel factor model to reduce the estimates of parameters, and second, validate the hypotheses by nestedmodels analyses in order to reduce the effects of colinearity.

    The sample size required for SEM, according to Anderson and Gerbing (1988), should be more than 200. In addition, Hayduk (1987) suggested that 50 to 500 would be proper and less than 50 samples would not lead to a convergence. The number of samples collected in this study was N = 275, which met the requirement. Thus, the number of samples was appropriate for SEM.

    Model Construction and Nested-Model AnalysesThe model proposed by this study (Figure 1) emerged from the literature review. In order to validate the first six hypotheses, this study validated the paths among the constructs by comparing a based model (Model A) and six nested models (Model 1 to Model 6). The construction of the nested models is below:

    Model A: The path coefficients of all latent variables were not limited; thus, it was the fittest model. Degrees of freedom of this model were 71. Chisquare of this model was the base for comparing the six nested models.

    Model 1: It validated 31

    (Hypothesis 1) the direct effect of internal marketing on organizational commitment; thus, restricted

    31 = 0,

    and degrees of freedom were 72.Model 2: It validated

    11 (Hypothesis 2) the direct effect of internal

    marketing on job involvement; thus, restricted 11

    = 0, and degrees of freedom were 72.

    Model 3: It validated 31

    (Hypothesis 3) the direct effect of job involvement on organizational commitment; thus, restricted

    31 = 0, and degrees of

    freedom were 72.

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    Model 4: It validated 21

    (Hypothesis 4) the direct effect of internal marketing on job satisfaction; thus, restricted

    21 = 0, and degrees of

    freedom were 72.Model 5: It validated

    32 (Hypothesis 5) the direct effect of job satis

    faction on organizational commitment; thus, restricted 32

    = 0, and degrees of freedom were 72.

    Model 6: It validated 21

    (Hypothesis 6) the direct effect of job involvement on job satisfaction; thus, restricted

    21 = 0, and degrees of free

    dom were 72.

    ResultsThis section will discuss the reliability and validity of measurements, evaluation of theoretical models, direct effect validations, mediating effect validations, and explained variances of latent dependent variables.

    Reliability and Validity of MeasurementContent validity was established through a literature review and through consultation with experienced practitioners and researchers. On the basis of these procedures, it was concluded that the measures have content validity. Scale reliability and convergent and discriminant validity were assessed by confirmatory factor analyses.

    In Table 1, as to reliability, with the exception of the motivation dimension of internal marketing, which revealed lower individual item reliability (.45), the reliabilities of the other items were between .50 and .77, which demonstrates that the overall items have a certain degree of individual item reliability. As to composite reliability, the composite reliabilities of the four latent variables were between .80 and .90, which are more than the criterion (.6), as suggested by Fornell and Larcker (1981). This demonstrates the good composite reliability of the latent variables. As to validity, factor loading () of the latent variables was between .67 and .88, which is more than the threshold value (.45), as suggested by Jreskog and Srbom (1992). It shows that all items reflect their latent variables constructed. In addition, the average variance extracted from the four latent variables was .54 to .69, which is higher than the threshold value (.5). Thus, it demonstrated good reliability and validity of measurement.

    Next, this study confirmed discriminant validity by comparing two nested models for each pair of variables in which we either allowed the correlation between two variables to be free or restricted the correlation to 1. Discriminant

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  • Tabl

    e 1.

    Mea

    sure

    Ana

    lysi

    s of

    Mea

    sure

    men

    t M

    odel

    Mea

    sure

    d va

    riab

    les

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    nt v

    aria

    bles

    Item

    sFa

    ctor

    lo

    adin

    gt v

    alue

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    dard

    ized

    er

    ror

    Indi

    vidu

    al it

    em

    relia

    bilit

    yN

    ames

    of

    vari

    able

    sC

    ompo

    site

    re

    liabi

    lity

    (CR

    )A

    vera

    ge v

    aria

    nce

    extr

    acte

    d (A

    VE)

    Trai

    ning

    Supp

    ort

    Com

    mun

    icat

    ion

    Mot

    ivat

    ion

    .82

    .71

    .73

    .67

    11

    .85

    12.1

    911

    .05

    .33

    .50

    .47

    .55

    .67

    .50

    .53

    .45

    Inte

    rnal

    m

    arke

    ting

    .82

    .54

    Qua

    lity

    upgr

    adin

    g.7

    1

    .50

    .50

    Job in

    volv

    emen

    t.8

    2.6

    0Sa

    crifi

    ce fo

    r w

    ork

    .72

    10.9

    8.4

    8.5

    2

    Full

    dev o

    tion

    .88

    12.7

    8.2

    3.7

    7

    Scho

    ol e

    nvir

    onm

    ent

    .80

    .3

    6.6

    4Jo

    b sa

    tisfa

    ctio

    n.9

    0.6

    9W

    ork

    cont

    ent

    .82

    15.0

    7.3

    3.6

    7

    Prou

    d.8

    415

    .50

    .29

    .71

    Sa

    tisfie

    d w

    ith t

    he

    job

    .87

    16.2

    4.2

    4.7

    6

    Des

    ervi

    ngEx

    tra

    time

    for

    scho

    olSt

    ay

    .82

    .74

    .71

    13

    .56

    13.0

    0

    .33

    .45

    .50

    .67

    .55

    .50

    Org

    aniz

    atio

    nal

    com

    mitm

    ent

    .80

    .57

    Not

    e: t

    valu

    e w

    ith

    is t

    he c

    rite

    rion

    par

    amet

    er t

    o co

    nstr

    uct

    the

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    e of

    late

    nt v

    aria

    bles

    .

    368

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  • Ting 369

    validity was supported; the chisquare statistic was significantly lower (p < .05) in the unconstrained model than in the constrained model for all variables.

    Evaluation of the Overall ModelAccording to the analysis of SEM, the GFI of the overall model was .90, CFI was .94, and RMR was .032. Thus, the legitimacy of the overall model in this study was validated.

    Validation on Direct EffectsThe first six hypotheses of this study were validated by the six nested models. In order to avoid colinearity, this study adopted chisquare difference tests. The gap of the degree of freedom between the nested model and the base model was 1; thus, when the chisquare of the nested model is more than that of the base model 3.84 (p < .05), it means that the coefficient is significant.

    The analytical results of the nested model are shown in Table 2. The difference between the chisquare of the six models and that of the theoretical model (Model A) was significant. Using Model 1 as an example, the chisquare difference between Model 1 and Model A was 38.22, which is significant. In other words, the two models are different. Thus, the path coefficient of the direct effect of internal marketing on organizational commitment is not 0. Chisquare differences between Model 2, Model 3, Model 4, Model 5, Model 6, and Model A were 40.92, 10.03, 26.27, 36.27, and 26.27, respectively; all reached the significance level of p < .05.

    This study estimated the parameters of the structural model by SEM, and the results are shown in Figure 2. The significance level of the path coefficient is shown in Table 3. As seen, the parameter of the influence of internal marketing on organizational commitment was .35 (t value was 5.84) and reached significance (p < .05). It indicates the direct and positive influence of internal marketing on organizational commitment. Thus, Hypothesis 1 was validated. In addition, other parameters were .55, .26, .31, .48, and .58, and they all reached the significance level (p < .05). Thus, Hypothesis 2, Hypothesis 3, Hypothesis 4, Hypothesis 5, and Hypothesis 6 were validated.

    In addition, as to the importance of the variables, the teachers organizational commitment was positively influenced by internal marketing, job involvement, and job satisfaction. Job satisfaction was the most influential (.48). As seen, job satisfaction is a key factor of teachers organizational commitments. Job satisfaction was mainly affected by internal marketing (.31) and

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    job involvement (.58), which demonstrates that internal marketing and job involvement are critical antecedent variables of job satisfaction.

    Validation of Mediating EffectsThe mediating effects of job involvement on the relationship between internal marketing and job satisfaction are shown in Table 4 and Figure 2. Internal marketing influenced job satisfaction at both direct and indirect levels. Through job involvement, the indirect level of influence of internal marketing on job satisfaction was .32. The direct level of the influence of internal marketing on job satisfaction also revealed a significant level, indicating that

    Table 2. Nested Model Analyses

    Models 2 df 2 GFI AGFI CFI RMR

    Model A: Theoretical model (base model)

    208.73 71 .90 .85 .94 .032

    Model 1: Internal marketing does not directly influence organizational commitment

    246.95 72 38.22** .89 .83 .93 .038

    Model 2: Internal marketing does not directly influence job involvement

    249.65 72 40.92** .88 .83 .91 .110

    Model 3: Job involvement does not directly influence organizational commitment

    218.76 72 10.03** .90 .85 .94 .035

    Model 4: Internal marketing does not directly influence job satisfaction

    235.00 72 26.27** .89 .84 .93 .042

    Model 5: Job satisfaction does not directly influence organizational commitment

    245.00 72 36.27** .89 .83 .93 .037

    Model 6: Job involvement does not directly influence job satisfaction

    235.00 72 26.27** .89 .84 .93 .042

    Null structural model 5,899.33 88 5690.6

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    job involvement includes partially mediating effects. According to the research findings, internal marketing can indirectly influence job satisfaction by the mediating processes of job involvement.

    Mediating effects of job satisfaction on the relationship between job involvement and organizational commitment are shown in Table 4 and Figure 2. The influence of job involvement on organizational commitment involves both direct and indirect levels. The indirect level of the influence of job involvement on organizational commitment through job satisfaction was .28. In addition, direct levels of the influence of job involvement on organizational com mitment reached the significance level. Job satisfaction revealed partially mediating effects on the relationship between job involvement and organizational commitment. The results showed that job involvement can indirectly influence organizational commitment through mediating processes of job satisfaction.

    Mediating effects of job involvement and job satisfaction on the relationship between internal marketing and organizational commitment are shown in Table 4 and Figure 2. The results demonstrated a significant relationship

    Figure 2. Structural modeling analyses

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    between independent variables (internal marketing) and mediators (job involvement and job satisfaction); there were significant relationships between mediators (job involvement and job satisfaction) and dependent variables (organizational commitment). Direct levels of the influence of internal marketing on organizational commitment reached significant levels, indicating

    Table 3. Empirical Analytical Results of Hypotheses

    HypothesesHypothetical relationship

    Parameter value t value

    Empirical results

    Hypothesis 1 Internal marketing organizational commitment

    + .35 5.84 Supported

    Hypothesis 2 Internal marketing job involvement

    + .55 7.25 Supported

    Hypothesis 3 Job involvement organizational commitment

    + .26 3.61 Supported

    Hypothesis 4 Internal marketing job satisfaction

    + .31 4.59 Supported

    Hypothesis 5 Job satisfaction organizational commitment

    + .48 6.15 Supported

    Hypothesis 6 Job involvement job satisfaction

    + .58 7.57 Supported

    Table 4. Direct and Indirect Effect Analysis

    Latent independent variables

    Latent dependent variables Indirect effect Direct effect Overall effect

    Internal marketing

    Organizational commitment

    .45 .35 .80

    Internal marketing

    Job involvement .55 .55

    Internal marketing

    Job satisfaction .32 .31 .63

    Job involvement Organizational commitment

    .28 .26 .54

    Job involvement Job satisfaction .58 .58Job satisfaction Organizational

    commitment .48 .48

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    the partially mediating effects of job involvement and job satisfaction. In other words, the influence of internal marketing on organizational commitment involves both direct and indirect levels. The indirect level (.45) was more significant than the direct level (.35). According to the results, internal marketing can indirectly influence organizational commitment by the mediating processes of job involvement and job satisfaction. Thus, Hypothesis 7, job involvement and job satisfaction reveal mediating effects on the relationship between internal marketing and organizational commitment, was supported by this study.

    Explained Variances of Latent Dependent VariablesThe model in this study revealed high explained variances (R2) on the latent dependent variables: organizational commitment (93%), job satisfaction (63%), and job involvement (31%). It shows that internal marketing, job involvement, and job satisfaction are good predictors of organizational commitment; internal marketing and job involvement can also predict job satisfaction well; additionally, internal marketing has a good predictive effect on job involvement. However, with regard to job involvement, this study only explored one independent variable, and the 69% variance of job involvement cannot be explained, thus relying on future studies.

    Conclusion and SuggestionsInternal marketing is a management strategy that treats employees as customers and jobs as products. It satisfies internal customers demands and needs through internal products in order to attract, develop, motivate, and retain qualified employees (Berry & Parasuraman, 1991). Schools are a place of cultivating talents. Only by providing good job conditions for teachers and retaining devoted teachers are the school efficacy and performance enhanced. Thus, this study probed into the process of the influence of school internal marketing on organizational commitment of teachers from a perspective using teachers job involvements and satisfaction as mediators. According to the research findings, conclusions and suggestions are proposed as follows.

    ConclusionsMain effect. As to the direct relationship between internal marketing and

    organizational commitment, this study found that internal marketing has a direct influence on organizational commitment. In addition, this study used training,

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    support, communication, and motivation to measure internal marketing, and they all had high loadings on internal marketing. Therefore, training, support, communication, and motivation could enhance teachers organizational commitment. Based on the findings, this study suggests that school management change the traditional leadership approach, adopt the perspective of marketing management, create a supportive and motivating organizational environment, establish effective communication channels, and offer planned training to enhance the employees commitment.

    Mediating effects. This study found that the influence of internal marketing on organizational commitment is not entirely a direct relationship like a simple relationship of input/output or stimulation/reaction; it is also mediated by teachers job involvement and job satisfaction. Furthermore, the indirect effect is higher than the direct effect, which indicates the importance of the mediating effects of job involvement and job satisfaction. There are three mediating paths: (1) internal marketingjob involvementorganizational commitment, (2) internal marketingjob satisfactionorganizational commitment, and (3) internal marketingjob involvementjob satisfactionorganizational commitment.

    Few studies have investigated both internal marketing and organizational commitment at the same time. This study has some academic contributions, because this study has not only extended the influential scope of the internal marketing theory to organizational commitment but also proposed the antecedent factors of organizational commitment (internal marketing, job involvement, and job satisfaction) and clarified the relationships among them. Thus, the findings of this study are helpful to explain why internal marketing activities can foster employees organizational commitment.

    Managerial ImplicationsIn the past, most schools have lacked marketing concepts, particularly the concept of internal customers. Based on the findings of this study, to enhance teachers organizational commitment, the school management should strengthen internal marketing activities for teachers. These activities would promote teachers job involvement and job satisfaction, which are helpful to teachers organizational commitment. The concept of internal marketing can become a concrete strategy for schools. According to the measure of this study on internal marketing, this study suggests that schools pay more attention to training, support, communication, and motivation for teachers.

    This study demonstrates that internal marketing would influence organizational commitment most by the mediation of a teachers job involvement

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    and job satisfaction. Therefore, schools should not view the relationship between internal marketing and organizational commitment the same as the relationship between input and output as well as strategy and performance, while neglecting the teachers attitude such as teachers job involvement and job satisfaction. Successful internal marketing activities should be those that promote teachers job involvement and job satisfaction and then teachers organizational commitment.

    Suggestions for Future StudiesThe empirical model of this study was tested by data from the educational service industry. Future studies can validate the same model in other industries to make the findings of this research more general or clarify whether industries could moderate the relationships among internal marketing, job involvement, job satisfaction, and organizational commitment.

    This study treated job involvement and job satisfaction as mediators and reasonably explained the causes of influence of internal marketing on organizational commitment. However, this research suggests that there should be mediators between internal marketing and job involvement; job ability and job motivation are two possible variables, as job involvement will not be easily produced without them. Thus, this study suggests future research further modify the overall model describing the relationship between internal marketing and organizational commitment.

    Clearly, in educational leadership, teacher professional development is a widely discussed issue by academics and practitioners. Teacher professional development and internal marketing are two related concepts and have similar relational variables. Whereas internal marketing is a strategy/practice, teacher professional development results from an operating strategy. For this study, professional development is a comprehensive result of support, motivation, communication, and training activities, all aimed at satisfying employees needs, including their professional growth. Nir and Bogler (2008) found that teachers propensity to take in professional development processes has three predicting variablesjob involvement, perceived fit between job demands and jobholders ability, and teachers perceived principals support. Employees think professional development activities reflect managerial commitment to employees, which engenders positive employee attitudes. Ackfeldt and Wong (2006) found professional development has a direct and positive effect on employees job satisfaction, whereas the professional developmentorganizational commitment relationship is unsupported. Hence, this study infers that professional development may be a mediator between internal marketing and job

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    satisfaction as well as between job involvement and job satisfaction. This study suggests that future research add the variable of teacher professional development into the study model to explore the role of professional development in the relationships among internal marketing, job involvement, job satisfaction, and organizational commitment.

    Since this study collected data via a questionnaire survey and the data were from the same source, a common method variance is possible. In order to avoid colinearity, this study used nested models to validate the hypotheses. However, this study suggests that future research not use consistent measurement format when designing the scale and collect data by multiple sources in order to avoid common method variance.

    Appendix

    Measured ItemsInternal Marketing Construct

    Support Dimension. Within the budget of funds, the principal considers our demands to improve or enrich equipment.

    The principal encourages our actions of innovation and accepts possible failure.

    The principal supplies us with ways for resolving work problems.The principal is actively concerned for us and understands the difficulties

    of our work.For unreasonable requests from students parents, the principal stands by us.The principal is concerned about our family condition.When making occasional little mistakes, the principal gives us second

    chances.Motivation Dimension. The reward and punishment norm of our school for teachers is reasonable, open, and clear.

    Regarding teacher outstanding task performance, the principal praises it at public events.

    The principal pays a lot of attention to teachers welfare.The principal creates our senses that we should do our best for the school.Regarding a new and difficult task, the principal often encourages teach

    ers to work together.Communication Dimension. We are informed of important information about the school through various channels.

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    When we face difficulties in performing tasks, we know who to ask to help solve the problem.

    The school provides us places and opportunities for communication.Training Dimension. The principal encourages teachers to participate in onthejob training activities.

    The principal thinks that onthejob training activities that conform to teachers demands are valuable.

    When holding different kinds of onthejob training activities, the school considers teachers demands.

    The principal pays a lot of attention to quality and efficacy of onthejob training activities.

    Job Involvement ConstructIm willing to enhance the quality of my current job.

    Im willing to sacrifice my time for my work.Im totally devoted to my current job.

    Job Satisfaction ConstructI enjoy the work environment of the school.

    I enjoy the content of my current job.I am proud of my current job.Generally speaking, I am satisfied with my current job.

    Organizational Commitment ConstructThe school is worthy of my devotion.

    I am willing to spend extra time in promoting the school.In order to stay at the school, I would be willing to do any work.

    Declaration of Conflicting Interests

    The authors declared that they had no conflicts of interests with respect to their authorship or the publication of this article.

    Funding

    The author thanks the anonymous reviewers for their helpful comments and the financial support provided by National Science Council in Taiwan.

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    Bio

    Shueh-Chin Ting has a business background and is Associate Professor of Marketing, College of Education, National University of Tainan, Taiwan. His research interests include relationship marketing, service quality, organizational behavior, school strategy, and teacher trust and commitment.

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