Indicators are important to stand for the concept in order to provide measure of a concept. Measure of concept could also be referred to as operational definition. It is important to differentiate between an indicator and a measure. Measure implies refers to things that are unambiguously counted whereas indicators are used to tap concepts that are less directly quantifiable.
Indicators could be devised in number of ways:
A self completion questionnaire or a structured interview schedule has a set of questions through which indicators could be defined. The report could be about anything like respondents’ report of an attitude or about their organisational behaviour.
The structured observation schedule records individuals’ behaviour like managerial activity.
Workplace Employment Relations Survey (WERS) data which is an official statistics used to measure UK employment practices.
The mass media content could be examined through content analysis. For example changes in the salience of an issue could be determined like practices in leadership styles of managers.