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Reading electronic mail at the office: Exploring how and why organizational members read information
Unformatted Document Text:  Reading electronic mail 24 Although the three organizations do not differ significantly from each other, the results of Figure 4 showed that information played a larger role for the participants of organization B in performing their job than for the participants of the organization A and C. This could mean that to be able to perform their job successfully, the organizational members from organization B are required to have a certain motivation to process information. This is less the case for organizational members from organization A and C. The results in the Figures 2 and 4 showed that in these organizations, it is more common that information does not always play a large role in performing a job. This could mean that organizational members from these organizations are not required to have a certain motivation to process information. This might explain the difference between the organizations A and C on the one hand, and organization B on the other hand. The result that the organizational members from organizations A and C did not differ that much from each other might be explained by the fact that characteristics of the individual, such as the need for cognition, are less influenced by contextual factors and therefore, can be considered as more general characteristics. Therefore, an exploratory pattern emerged from the results in the Figures 2, 4, and 6. Yet, we do not have the intention to draw general conclusions from this pattern. It is meant to serve as a first assumption for further research. With respect to the need for cognition as an individual’s characteristic, the results pointed out in the direction that email messages were read less in their entirety and less thoroughly by participants with a high need for cognition. This result does not subscribe to the assumption we made that individuals with a high need for cognition read email messages more in their entirety and more thoroughly because they are motivated to engage in and enjoy effortful information processing. This unexpected result might be explained by the fact that individuals with a certain motivation to process information, process information more often than individuals without a certain motivation to process information. Therefore, it is imaginable

Authors: de Bakker, Suzanne. and Elving, Wim.
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Reading electronic mail 24
Although the three organizations do not differ significantly from each other, the
results of Figure 4 showed that information played a larger role for the participants of
organization B in performing their job than for the participants of the organization A and C.
This could mean that to be able to perform their job successfully, the organizational members
from organization B are required to have a certain motivation to process information. This is
less the case for organizational members from organization A and C. The results in the
Figures 2 and 4 showed that in these organizations, it is more common that information does
not always play a large role in performing a job. This could mean that organizational
members from these organizations are not required to have a certain motivation to process
information. This might explain the difference between the organizations A and C on the one
hand, and organization B on the other hand.
The result that the organizational members from organizations A and C did not differ
that much from each other might be explained by the fact that characteristics of the individual,
such as the need for cognition, are less influenced by contextual factors and therefore, can be
considered as more general characteristics. Therefore, an exploratory pattern emerged from
the results in the Figures 2, 4, and 6. Yet, we do not have the intention to draw general
conclusions from this pattern. It is meant to serve as a first assumption for further research.
With respect to the need for cognition as an individual’s characteristic, the results pointed out
in the direction that email messages were read less in their entirety and less thoroughly by
participants with a high need for cognition. This result does not subscribe to the assumption
we made that individuals with a high need for cognition read email messages more in their
entirety and more thoroughly because they are motivated to engage in and enjoy effortful
information processing. This unexpected result might be explained by the fact that individuals
with a certain motivation to process information, process information more often than
individuals without a certain motivation to process information. Therefore, it is imaginable


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