The impact of motivation–experience congruence



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Volunteers play a vital role in helping nonprofit organizations operate and achieve success. The purpose of this study, therefore, was to investigate factors that might contribute to developing strong organization–volunteer relationships and how those impact the outcomes job satisfaction, staying intention, productivity, and the organization-public relationship outcomes of trust, relationship satisfaction, control mutuality, and commitment. Based in relationship management theory and using the three-stage organization-public relationship model for structure, this study sought to examine the role of volunteers' functional motivations and motivation–experience congruence in shaping positive relationship outcomes. A survey was conducted with 371 volunteers from 26 nonprofit organizations to identify volunteer motivations as antecedents to the relationship, volunteer experiences corresponding to their motivations, and volunteer perceptions of their relationship with the organization, among other measures. The results of regression and hierarchical linear modeling analyses showed that where volunteers' experiences were congruent with their motivations for volunteering, relationship quality was higher, as was intent to stay and productivity; there was no significant relationship, with job satisfaction. Volunteer tenure was shown to have a negative relationship with the control mutuality. This supports relationship management theory by demonstrating that organizations that help to facilitate volunteer goal achievement also have stronger relationships with volunteers helping to facilitate organizational success.



Volunteers, Nonprofits, Volunteer functions index, Organization-public relationships, Relationship management, Antecedents, Public relations, Organization-volunteer relationships