The Correlation of Business English as Lingua Franca and the Job Satisfaction of Non-native Speakers of English

Bachelor Thesis, 2022

39 Pages, Grade: 1.9


Table of Contents


List of abbreviations

List of symbols

List of tables

List of figures

1 Introduction

2 Definitions
2.1 Business English as lingua franca (BELF)
2.2 Foreign Language Anxiety
2.3 Job satisfaction

3 Current state of research
3.1 Effects of FLA
3.2 FLA and job satisfaction

4 Preliminary conclusion and research gap

5 Hypothesis

6 Methodology
6.1 Measuring instruments
6.1.1 Frequency of use of English at work
6.1.2 Personal English skills
6.1.3 Current job position
6.1.4 FLA in Formal Settings scale (FLA-FS)
6.1.5 Job satisfaction
6.2 Conduct of the Study
6.3 Selection of sample
6.4 Data evaluation

7 Results
7.1 Descriptive statistics
7.1.1 Statistical evaluation
7.1.2 Analysis of variance
7.2 Correlation analysis

8 Discussion
8.1 Summary
8.2 Practical significance
8.3 Limitations and recommendations for further research

9 Conclusion




The objective of this thesis is to examine the correlation between Foreign Language Anxiety (FLA) in the context of using business English at work and job satisfaction amongst non-native speakers of English, particularly in view of their professional self-actualization.

In this study, FLA was measured by using the FLA-FS scale developed by Gargalianou et al. (2016). Job satisfaction was measured on the scale developed by Fischer & Lück (1972). Sociodemographic data was taken into consideration as well. The results reveal a low negative correlation between FLA and job satisfaction (r = -.39) and a low negative correlation between FLA and self-actualization in the workplace (r = -.40), which means the higher the anxiety scores on the FLA scale, the lower the job satisfaction and professional self-actualization. Moreover, there is a strong positive correlation between FLA and the individual proficiency level of English (r = .70), which means that FLA affects mainly, but not solely, beginners of English.

Given the results and the impact of FLA on the psychological and physical well-being of employees, multinational organizations which have adopted business English as lingua franca must be able to detect behavioral and non-behavioral signs of FLA and implement measures to combat the negative effects on their workforce. As there have been no studies on this topic yet conducted, this thesis strives to close the gap in research.

Further large-scale research on the correlation of FLA and job satisfaction would be necessary to determine in-depth findings and pull significant business-psychological insights.

List of abbreviations

BELF Business English as Lingua Franca

BLF Business Lingua Franca

FLA Foreign Language Anxiety

List of symbols

Cohen‘s d Standardized mean difference

df Degrees of Freedom

M Mean

n Sample size

p Probability value

r Rho (correlation coefficient)

SD Standard Deviation

t Empirical t-value

List of tables

Table 6.1 Age

Table 6.2 Gender

Table 6.3 English language skills

Table 6.4 Frequency of use of Business English

Table 6.5 Current job position

Table 7.1 Mean difference in gender

Table 7.2 Mean difference of further sociodemographic data with regards to job satisfaction

Table 7.3 Mean difference of further sociodemographic data with regards to FLA

Table 7.4 Correlation analysis

List of figures

Figure 6.1 Example item on the FLA-FS scale

Figure 6.2 Example item on the FLCA scale

Figure 6.3 Comparison of item 20 on the FLCA scale

Figure 6.4 Comparison of Item 2 on the FLA-FS scale

Figure 7.1 Distribution of job satisfaction values

Figure 7.2 Distribution of FLA values

Figure 7.3 Distribution of FLA values amongst beginners of English

1 Introduction

According to a survey carried out by the job search engine Indeed, a total of 44% of the respondents across Germany communicate in a foreign language in their job, with English being used most frequently at 97% (Bund der Auslands-Erwerbstätte, 2018). English has indisputably become an essential component for economic work purposes in international business (Knapp & Meierkord, 2002; Zaharia & Lolescu, 2009; Harzing & Pudelko, 2013; Charles, 2007; Gerritsen & Nickerson, 2009; Piekkari, 2009; Crystal, 2003; Jenkins, 2006; Bargiela-Chiappini, Nickerson & Planken, 2007; Mollin, 2006; Sweeney & Hua, 2010). In the light of increasing demands in international competition, cross-border cooperation, which requires good communication skills, rapidly increasing globalization, and the pressure to remain attractive to potential applicants, the use of English as the language of global business is understandable. However, despite its mediating role, language can be a barrier and hinder the communication process in the workplace (Wagner, 2018; Kilpatrick, 1984). This problem prevails particularly in mul¬tinational organizations whose workforce consists of employees from multiple countries with different proficiency levels in English (Sanden & Lønsmann, 2018). Successful communication requires complex cognitive and mental operations, which are difficult for non-native speakers to perform, as the foreign language has not been internalised in the same way that the native language has (Horwitz, 2001). In addition, a free and spontaneous communication flow is often hampered by the lack of vocabulary (Davies, 2003), which hinders the translating and encoding process of verbal or written messages in English in an unambiguous way that non-native speakers can understand (Nerdinger, Blickle & Schaper, 2019). As a result, information sharing can be impaired, distorting essential communications which can lead to wrong strategic decisions (Zhang, 2019). Non-natives speakers often perceive the obligation to speak English at work as a stressor (Neeley et al., 2012), which results in the release of stress hormones. These impact the psychological well-being and create feelings of anxiety (Neuner, 2021), thereby posing a risk on the individual’s mental health in the long term (Servan-Schreiber, 2006).

Spector (1997) finds emotional balance and psychological well-being to be the basis for job satisfaction. Armstrong (2006) reasons that job satisfaction is shaped by emotions related to the individual’s work environment. Lawler (1973, p. 63) maintains that: “what happens to people during the workday has profound effects both on the individual employee’s life and on the society as a whole, and thus these events cannot be ignored if the quality of the life in society is to be high”. Negative experiences at work can lead to psychosomatic symptoms, e.g., insomnia or depression (Bowling & Hammond, 2008), whereas high job satisfaction is positively associated with life satisfaction and job performance (Fletcher & Williams, 1996; Babin & Boles, 1996).

Although business English as a lingua franca (BELF) has been incorporated into German and international business for several years, the language barriers in the communication process and the associated emotional effects on employees are rarely addressed and discussed in organizations. As a result, managers are uncapable of increasing the confidence and job satisfaction of their non-native subordinates (Piekkari, 2009). Given the impact of BELF on the well-being and job satisfaction of non-native speakers of English with potential negative consequences for the organization’s international business success, this can be considered a significant gap in occupational psychology and leadership of employees.

2 Definitions

2.1 Business English as lingua franca (BELF)

The term 'lingua franca' refers to the use of a language for the purpose of communication and of creating mutual understanding by people whose mother tongue and culture are different (Seidlhofer, 2001). Business-Lingua-Franca (BLF) specifies business operations as the area in which the language is used for this purpose (Louhiala-Salminen & Charles, 2006). English has manifested itself as BLF worldwide over the years due to demographic, economic, technological, and trend-specific changes (van Els, 2005). It plays an essential communicative role in negotiations, contract conclusions, international company expansions as well as acquisitions or mergers with other multinational organizations. Some consumers principally prefer to communicate with companies in English, e.g., to track their orders. For this reason, BELF is also used to enhance the consumer experience and maintain customer loyalty (Hasan, 2020).

The purpose of the standardization of the English language as BLF is to establish a common linguistic framework with the aim to improve information exchange and communication within an organization. It also encourages collaboration between employees with different mother tongues, which minimises the potential for misunderstandings and loss of information (Crystal, 2003; Sanden & Lønsmann, 2018).

2.2 Foreign Language Anxiety

Anxiety is a subjective feeling of apprehension and worry, which activates the autonomic nervous system (Spielberger, 1983). Foreign Language Anxiety (FLA) describes an anxiety response elicited in relation to learning and communicating in a non-native language, which can challenge one's self-concept as a competent interlocutor and lead to reticence, self-consciousness or even panic (MacIntyre & Gardner, 1994). FLA is a unique type of anxiety specific to foreign language learning and was first coined by Horwitz, Horwitz and Cope in 1986. They defined it as “a distinct complex construct of self-perceptions, beliefs, feelings, and behaviours related to classroom language learning arising from the uniqueness of language learning process” (Horwitz et al., 1986, p. 128). They suggested that FLA is not a general classroom anxiety but a situation-specific anxiety, which stems from the inherent inauthenticity associated with a lack of communicative abilities, particularly when speaking in the foreign language (Munro & Derwing, 2011).

According to Aichhorn & Puck (2017), FLA affects non-English speakers for two reasons:

1) Due to missing or insufficient productive knowledge of speaking and writing or receptive knowledge of reading and listening. This is especially prevalent amongst beginners.
2) Non-native speakers are dissatisfied with their own foreign language skills and rate them as insufficient, especially in comparison to the rhetoric skills of native or near native speakers of English. Therefore, FLA can also occur amongst employee with intermediate or advanced foreign language skills (MacIntyre & Gardner, 1994).

FLA is not a relatively stable behavioral disposition that would apply to different situations, but rather a situation-specific fear response. It can therefore also affect people who are generally not anxious (Horwitz, 2001; Aichhorn & Puck, 2017).

2.3 Job satisfaction

The term 'job satisfaction' has been widely researched in psychological literature. In his literary-critical essay in 1976, Locke counted 3,350 English research papers about job satisfaction. In 2021, the Clarivate Analytics Web of Science database contained more than 36,000 publications (Spector, 2022). However, despite the broad interest and overwhelming amount of research, there is no single definition of job satisfaction to this date.

This study defines job satisfaction as a collective of subjective attitudes towards various aspects of the individual’s job. It can trigger emotional responses and determine attitudes about work, thereby increasing or decreasing the willingness to engage in behavior related to work. This definition can be found in the works of Weiss (2002, p. 175) and Neuberger & Allerbeck (1978, p. 32). Spector also describes job satisfaction as "(...) a person's overall evaluation of his or her job as favourable or unfavourable. It reflects an attitude toward one's job and hence includes affect, cognitions, and behavioral tendencies” (Meier & Spector, 2015, p. 1).

There are different concepts that have been designed to explore and analyse job satisfaction. The two-factor theory of Herzberg, Mausner & Snyderman (1959) is a content-oriented concept of job satisfaction. It examines a person's motives that lead him to perform certain actions. There are two influencing factors that can avoid dissatisfaction or bring about satisfaction: the hygiene factors satisfy extrinsic work motives outside of the work activity. This includes interpersonal relationships with superiors and co-workers. The fulfilment of these motives does not create satisfaction but avoids dissatisfaction. The motivators, on the other hand, are aimed at intrinsic work motives, such as professional self-realization, and promote satisfaction. If they are not met, employees do not experience dissatisfaction, but a neutral state of dissatisfaction (Herzberg et al., 1959, quoted from von Rosenstiel, 2010).

Depending on the context and situational circumstances, attitudes are subject to change. New experiences and changes in the individual’s work environment can lead to a change in attitudes, which can influence the individual’s behavior both consciously and unconsciously (Schuler, 2004; Werth & Mayer, 2008). Since job satisfaction can be defined as attitudinal variable, it is not a static but a dynamic construct, which means that the level of job satisfaction can vary.

3 Current state of research

There is little research on FLA in business contexts and no empirical data about FLA and job satisfaction to date. Most of the literature explore the emotional impact of BELF without taking FLA into consideration (Seidlhofer, 2001; Ehrenreich, 2010; Bevene, Hinds & Cramton, 2009; Neeley et al., 2012; Tenzer & Pudelko, 2015; Harzing & Pudelko, 2014; Kankaanranta & Louhiala-Salminen, 2010; Feely & Harzing, 2002; Charles & Marschan-Piekkari, 2002; Sanden & Lønsmann, 2018; Fredriksson, Barner-Rasmussen & Piekkari 2006). Further disadvantages of BELF are often examined in terms of linguistic theoretical approaches (Bargiela-Chiapppini & Harris, 1997; Nickerson, 2005; Poncini, 2003) or cognitive aspects and cultural differences of language barriers (Brannen, 2004; House, 1999). In light of the negative effects of FLA, which are highlighted below, this can be considered a significant research gap.

3.1 Effects of FLA

FLA can be assigned to situation-specific reactions of fear. These arise in the amygdala, which is part of the human brain and limbic system and responsible for processing anxiety. By increasing adrenaline production, which is apparent in the form of sweat, a dry mouth, or an increased heart rate, it prepares the body for fight or flight (Aichhorn & Puck, 2017; Davis, 1992). On an emotional level, FLA triggers self-directed feelings of embarrassment and shame about one’s own language skills and rhetoric competences, which bring about a mental blockage in communication and cause people to isolate and keep their feelings to themselves (Lammers, 2020). This is further exacerbated by the fact that lingua franca speakers feel particularly insecure when they are required to speak in face-to-face situations (Cheng, Horwitz & Schallert, 1999). The feelings of shame also inhibit people's willingness to open up to other team members, making it difficult to form trusting relationships (Mauranen & Ranta, 2009; Piekkari, Welch & Welch, 1997; Hinds, Neeley & Cramton, 2014; Tenze, Terjesen & Harzing, 2016; Dunn & Schweitzer, 2005). Furthermore, FLA leads to an excessive self-consciousness and promotes fear of being judged negatively by others. The individual’s attention cannot be adequately directed towards his or her work, which impairs the cognitive performance (Eysenck, 1979). Due to the lack of confidence about one’s own personal ability to succeed (Campbell, 1990), and to prevent further diminishment of the self-esteem, any task-related effort are withheld. In addition, people find it difficult to express themselves in English as they cannot use the same rhetorical skills which they would normally apply in their mother tongue, which results in lower self-esteem (Tenzer & Pudelko, 2015). Self-esteem can be defined as the individual’s overall self-evaluation of his or her competencies. Organization-based self-esteem refers to the individual’s self-perceived value and belief to be significant and worthy as a member of the organization he or she works in. When people experience lower levels of self-expression and personal control, they will most likely attribute negative events to themselves, which affects their level of organization-based self-esteem (Pierce & Gardner, 2004).

FLA also has behavioral implications and affects the way employees communicate with each other. Several studies observed that non-native speakers of English tend to resort to passive, emotion-focused coping strategies. Coping is defined as the effort to manage environmental demands that strain or exceed one’s resources (Lazarus & Folkman, 1984). As English is often regarded as threatening to non-native speakers (Tenzer & Pudelko, 2015), they often reduce informal interaction in the workplace, thereby leading to more formal and task-oriented communication in the team, or they avoid their native English-speaking colleagues from the outset (Neeley, 2013; Louhiala-Salminen, Charles, and Kankaanranta, 2005; Liu & Jackson, 2008; Sanden & Lønsmann, 2018). This behavior is attributable to the natural survival instinct in the form of a flight response in the face of imminent danger but prevents the exchange of a diverse range of ideas, as employees are less likely to share their viewpoints with their native co-workers. This in turn can lower the company's innovative strength and pose a significant risk to its business performance (Aichhorn & Puck, 2017).

Harzing and Feely (2008) posit that language can be regarded as a symbol for ingroups and outgroups. Avoiding small talk and formal conversations with native English speakers can lead to group formations with fellow native speakers and result in rejecting the members of the outgroup. Non-native speakers often perceive their English colleagues to be holding an advantage (Van Parijs, 2009), particularly when it comes to promotions, as a person’s leadership qualities and professional competence are associated with their communication style (Paunova, 2015) especially in virtual teams (Balthazard, Waldman, & Warren, 2009). Louhiala-Salminen and Kankaanranta (2010) position clarity, directness, and politeness as key criteria of successful communication, which are difficult for non-native speakers to fulfil in a foreign language, thereby causing feelings of frustration paired with diminished self-esteem. The dynamics of a group are influenced by the emotions of its members and unpleasant events evoke strong negative emotional responses, leading to a fast emotional contagion amongst group members (Barsade, 2002; Hatfield, Cacioppo, & Rapson, 1993). Frustration can cause resentment, mistrust, and hostility towards the outgroup (Poole, Britt & Adler, 2003). Lingua franca speakers are likely to project the frustration towards their native English co-workers as they believe them to be at an advantage (Neeley et al., 2012). Native speakers, when interacting with their non-native co-workers, are often found to continuously use idioms or complicated vocabulary, bringing with them their cultural communication norms, which are difficult for the lingua franca speaker to understand (Sweeney & Hua, 2010). As one Finnish professional interviewed in the study by Nurmi & Koroma (2017) explained:

“When all participants of a discussion are non-native English speakers, the situation I think is more equal, but, with American and British colleagues it is a bit like that you are an underdog at all times. Especially, if you have to negotiate on an issue; so, in those situations I am aware of my disadvantaged position and feel stressed.” (Nurmi & Korma, 2017, p. 9).

As a result of the perceived frustration, the outgroup can get deprived of essential information (Schwarz, 2014), is socially excluded (Goldstein 2002) or devaluated (Jonas, Stroebe & Hewstone, 2014).

As people experience higher levels of frustration, there is an increased likelihood that the individual feels less satisfied with work (Charles, 2007). Spector, Chen & O’Connel (2008) maintain that frustration and group conflicts positively correlate with anxiety, which means that FLA is even further exacerbated. Group conflicts result in stress and negatively correlate with team performance (Hempel, Zhang & Tjosvold, 2009; Somech, Desivilya & Lidogoster, 2009). Stress is associated with negative emotions and leads to a lower job satisfaction (Fuller, Stanton, Fisher, Spitzmüller, Russell & Smith, 2003).

3.2 FLA and job satisfaction

Social interaction has a positive effect on the individual's job satisfaction and is more relevant than the job itself (Steffens, Haslam, Schuh, Jetten & van Dick, 2017). Sepctor (1985) found it to be even more important than salary or promotion opportunities. Other studies have observed that employees will experience increased job satisfaction if their co-workers are kind and supportive (Aamondt, 2004; Robbins, 2003), because “the work group normally serves as a source of support, comfort, advice and assistance to the individual worker” (Luthans, 1995, p. 127). Affective responses to work are dependent on interpersonal interactions in the workplace (Mercer, 1997). The increased job satisfaction is promoted by the sense of unity that connects the members with one another (Köppel, 2008).

A sense of belonging, good cooperation and social acceptance are part of the social needs which form the middle part of Maslow’s five-level pyramid of needs. The largest, most fundamental physiological needs like food and shelter are located at the bottom of the pyramid. They must be fulfilled before the individual becomes motivated to achieve the next-level needs, which are safety, love and belonging, esteem, and self-actualization. The latter cannot be reached if the social ties within an organization are negatively affected. Self-actualization encourages people to realize their skills and achieve their full potential (von Devivere, 2018; Grobler & Wärnich, 2008). According to Herzberg's two-factor theory, job satisfaction is also dependent on opportunities for self-actualization, which explains why employees usually tend to seek jobs that are challenging and creative in their pursuit for self-actualization. (Grobler et al., 2002).

The study of Krems, Kenrick & Neel (2017) takes up Maslow’s definition of self-actualization and examines the core motives which people regard as central to their individual self-actualization. Most respondents claimed that the pursuit of status is the most important component. The correlation of self-actualization and individual status is also confirmed by Ushakov (2016). Status is a fundamental need for apprehension, admiration, and approval (Anderson, Hildreth & Howland, 2015) and an opportunity for the individual to experience a sense of achievement, which in turn has a positive impact on their self-esteem as a member of the organization (Pierce & Gardner, 2004). If the need is unfulfilled, it can have a negative impact on the physical and mental well-being (Allen, Gray, Baumeister & Leary, 2021). Non-native employees often experience a certain degree of status loss which they associate with the obligation to speak English at work and the belief that their English colleagues are more respected because of their elaborate rhetoric skills (Neeley, 2013; Bordieu, 1991). Mahadevan et al. (2016) postulate that self-esteem rises and falls in tandem with higher or lower status. A status loss results in reduced self-esteem which negatively correlates with lower job satisfaction (Pierce & Gardner, 2004).

Due to the language barriers, non-native employees often find professional challenges overwhelming and unsolvable. According to Rotter’s “Locus of Control” (1996), a psychological concept which defines the degree to which people perceive an event or situation as the outcome of their own actions, this is a limited internal locus of control, since the employee’s behavior can only be controlled to a limited extent and is much rather determined by external factors. A limited internal locus of control in turn promotes a lower job satisfaction (Judge & Bono, 2001; Pierce & Gardner, 2004).

4 Preliminary conclusion and research gap

It can be concluded that the use of business English can elicit FLA amongst non-native employees. FLA has physical, emotional, cognitive, and behavioral effects on employees and the dynamics in their work environment. It prevents the formation of trusting interpersonal relationships and negatively impacts teamwork. According to Kahn (1990), these effects reduce individual psychological safety, which he defines as the feeling of being able to be authentic without fear of negative consequences for the self-image, status, or career. Psychological safety cannot be established if employees do not trust their co-workers and receive little support from them, which reduces the innovative strength of a team (Edmondson & Lei, 2014). Being in an environment characterized by trust has a positive association with one’s self-esteem within the organization (Pierce & Gardner, 2004). Language-induced anxiety restricts individuals in their behavioral flexibility, creates a diminished self-image, and elicits increased fear of loss of status (Goller & Laufer, 2018). Even though all these effects verifiably result in lower job satisfaction, FLA is not considered as a dimension in the common models for measuring job satisfaction (Smith, Kendall, & Hulin, 1969; Spector, 1985; Fischer & Lück, 1972; Weiss, Dawis, England & Lofquist, 1967).

5 Hypothesis

Even though a few studies have revealed negative associations between BELF and job satisfaction (Neeley, 2013; Charles, 2007; Lüdi, Meier, Kohler & Yanaprasart, 2016), there are no studies yet conducted that empirically examine the correlation of FLA and job satisfaction amongst non-native speakers of English. This thesis strives to close the gap in research.

The objective of this study is to

- Determine the correlation of FLA and job satisfaction amongst non-native employees.
- Determine whether a correlation exists between FLA and professional self-actualization, which hinders employees to fully reach their professional potential.

The following hypotheses will be examined:

H1: There is a statistically significant negative correlation between FLA and the job satisfaction amongst non-native speakers of English.

H2: There is a statistically significant negative correlation between FLA and the professional self-actualization of non-native speakers of English.

6 Methodology

In this chapter the research methodology to analyse the correlation between FLA and job satisfaction is described. It focuses on sampling methods, measuring instruments and the methodology employed to gather the data in this research. The measuring instruments were designed in the form of a questionnaire which consisted of socio-demographic questions, a self-reporting questionnaire on the respondents’ job position, their personal English skills, how often they use English at work, the Foreign-Language-Anxiety in Formal Settings scale (FLA-FS) and a job satisfaction survey.

6.1 Measuring instruments

6.1.1 Frequency of use of English at work

The respondents were asked to indicate how often they use English at work, both written and spoken, using the following options:

1 never
2 hardly ever
3 every now and then
4 several times a week
5 every day

6.1.2 Personal English skills

The respondents were asked to assess their language skills based on four categories:

1 elementary
2 intermediate
3 fluent
4 native

6.1.3 Current job position

The respondents were asked to identify their current job position based on the following options:

1 Coordinator
2 Assistant
3 Manager
4 Senior Manager
5 (Senior) Director
6 Team Lead
7 (Senior) Vice President/C-Suite
8 Self-Employed
9 Intern

6.1.4 FLA in Formal Settings scale (FLA-FS)

The FLA-in-Formal-Settings-scale (FLA-FS) developed by Gargalianou, Muehlfeld, Urbig und van Witteloostuijn (2016) was used to measure Foreign Language Anxiety in business contexts. The inventory consisted of statements about FLA, which the respondents were asked to agree or disagree with by using a Likert scale from 1 (“I strongly disagree”) to 7 (“I fully agree”).

Figure 6.1: Example item on the FLA-FS scale

Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten

The FLA-FS scale is based on the Foreign-Language-Classroom-Anxiety scale (FLCA) by Horwitz, Horwitz & Cope (1986), which was created to measure FLA in regard to communication, test performance and fear of negative evaluation in foreign language teaching.

Figure 6.2: Example item on the FLCA scale

Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten

Since Gargalianou et al. focused their study on FLA as a consequence of using a foreign language in a professional context and not in relation to foreign language teaching, they modified certain original statements in the FLCA scale. They also made specific reference to English as a business language when measuring FLA.

Figure 6.3 Comparison of item 20 on the FLCA scale

Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten

Figure 6.4 Comparison of Item 2 on the FLA-FS scale

Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten

In addition, the inventory of the FLA-FS scale was reduced to ten items to prevent premature termination of the survey. It uses a seven-digit Likert scale and aims to prevent biased responses based on the individual’s response preferences (Gargalianou et al, 2016). In the present study, the values on the Likert scale were reversed to equate them with the polarity of the job satisfaction scale.

6.1.5 Job satisfaction

The job satisfaction scale developed by Fischer and Lück in 1972 is the first German instrument to measure job satisfaction (Fischer and Lück, 1972). The long version of the questionnaire consists of 37 items and focuses on four job factors which have proven to be significant in previous American studies (Franz, 2020):

- Applicability of one’s skills in the workplace (self-actualization)
- Resignation (inner attitude and well-being)
- Satisfaction with salary
- Overall assessment of the company (leadership style of one’s supervisor and promotion opportunities)

This subdivision of the various facets enables a differentiation of the individual emotional reactions to work and helps in finding solutions to improve satisfaction.

The survey contained items from the four factors. The respondents were asked to agree or disagree with the statements and questions in view of their own job by using a five-point Likert scale from 1 (“I strongly disagree”) to 5 (“I strongly agree”).

6.2 Conduct of the Study

The survey was conducted on SoSci Survey, a web application for creating online questionnaires. The sample consisted of native and non-native speakers of English in multinational companies and was recruited from the author's circle of friends and colleagues. The test subjects received the link to the questionnaire by e-mail or as a text message and were asked to pass it on to other people in their professional environment.

Since the term 'anxiety ' can be associated with a personally and socially negative quality, further statements of a more neutral nature were invented by the author and added to the FLA-FS scale to avoid a distortion of answers. In addition, the test subjects were not informed of the true objective of the study but were told that the correlation between job satisfaction and Business English was to be examined.

The test subjects were asked to provide sociodemographic data about their gender and age. Job satisfaction was measured using the scale by Fischer & Lück (2014). To avoid a lack of motivation and premature termination of the survey, the items on the scale were shortened from 37 to 29 positively scaled items. Upon completion of the job satisfaction survey, the respondents were asked to assess their English skills. Native English speakers were excluded from measuring FLA.

The test subjects were asked to indicate how often they use written and spoken English in everyday business. Participants who never use English at work were also excluded from measuring FLA, which was carried out by using the FLA-FS scale. The complete questionnaires and the instructions are included in the appendix.


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The Correlation of Business English as Lingua Franca and the Job Satisfaction of Non-native Speakers of English
European University of Applied Sciences Hamburg
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correlation, business, english, lingua, franca, satisfaction, non-native, speakers
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Sarah Capozza (Author), 2022, The Correlation of Business English as Lingua Franca and the Job Satisfaction of Non-native Speakers of English, Munich, GRIN Verlag,


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