University of Twente Student Theses


De Rabobank Groep: invloed op operationeel risico. Een analyse van determinanten van risicobewust gedrag

Vernooij, P.J. (2008) De Rabobank Groep: invloed op operationeel risico. Een analyse van determinanten van risicobewust gedrag.

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Abstract:The Rabobank Group would like to have influence on the risk awareness of its employees to prevent them from making unnecessary or costly errors. The research described in this thesis therefore investigates: What the concept of risk awareness is, which factors contribute to the concept of risk awareness, which approach should be taken to positively influence the behavior. This research needed to be conducted within the bank; an international operating firm with relatively highly educated knowledge workers. First, risk awareness was operationalised by the introduction of three tasks; communicating about risks, taking responsibility and securing information. These three tasks reflected ideal behavior in the context of risk awareness and were connected to some relevant influencing factors appearing in the scientific literature. Secondly a theoretical model, the Theory of Planned Behaviour (Ajzen, 2001), was introduced to predict the behavior of employees for each of the three tasks, also using the factors from the scientific literature. Consequently, this modificated model was tested empirically using a survey. Over 200 employees from Rabobank Nederland responded on questions about their opinion towards their respective behavior in each of the three tasks. Using these answers a data-analysis was carried out to determine whether the model fitted the data and which determinants practically have influence on an employee’s behavior. This resulted in some relevant findings. It appeared that an employee’s personal attitude was the most important determinant of his behavior and that his own opinion plays a central role in decision making towards the task to be carried out. Nevertheless, conformity towards a group norm also appeared to be an significantly influencing factor. Cultural influences and group habits are therefore, although task dependent, also quite important determinants of the behavior. It also appeared that employees don’t differentiate with respect to influences from managers or co-workers within the group norm. A separate, autonomous construct measuring direct influence from managers toward the intention to carry out a certain task could therefore not be maintained. These findings can be generalized across all employees of Rabobank Nederland, given the representative sample responding on the survey , and can be used to shape the 4 management of operational risk. It would therefore be best to introduce strategies directly pointed on personal attitudes and the so-called group norm to influence behavior. For example, within policies directing personal attitudes it would be very effective to let employees speak about their own personal norms and standards towards their behavior. This would lead to a better understanding of someone’s attitude and barriers for ideal behavior and an opportunity to influence this attitude. This approach can also be taken on group level, discussing certain group norms. Next to delivering some useful suggestions for implementing effective approaches to influence employee behavior, this thesis also offers suggestions for further research. A suggestion is for example to examine which determinant of behavior can be influenced most effectively so that in the future next to effective also efficient strategies of behavioral change can be introduced.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:77 psychology
Programme:Psychology MSc (66604)
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