Glossary of OB Terms
This is the beginning of a glossary of Organizational Behavior terms. I will be adding to it continually throughout the
semester. If you have suggestions about items to add or changes in the definitions, please email me at
firstname.lastname@example.org or fill out the comments form -- I would really appreciate it!
- 1. A postulated relationship between a pair of variables. The reason for expecting the variables to be related should
come from a theory. 2. Any theory-based prediction about some measurable data.
- 1. A corporation, government, club or similar entity whose membership is well-defined and consists of individuals or
other organizations. 2. Abstractly, an orderly pattern or principle, as in "Is there any organization in this mess?"
- 1. Who reports to whom in the organization: the organization chart. 2. More generally, how the organization is divided
into departments, how centralized the decision-making is, what rules and procedures are followed. 3. Sometimes,
organization culture is seen as part of structure.
- A general explanation of how something works. A theory says what is related to what and why. A theory is, in part, a
collection of related hypotheses. However, a theory also contains a sense of process and mechanism -- a sense of
understanding of why and how the variables are related the way they are. Desirable characteristics of a theory include:
falsifiability, parsimony, truth, fertility, and beauty.