Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes

  • Small economic losses lower total compensation for victims of emotional losses
    Publication date: January 2018
    Source:Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Volume 144

    Author(s): Shirley Zhang, Christopher K. Hsee, Xueer Yu

    This article explores an important yet understudied topic – the lay public’s opinion of fair compensation for victims of emotional losses (emotional suffering). Four experiments, covering diverse contexts, find an anomalous phenomenon: laypeople would award less compensation to someone incurring an emotional loss if the person also incurs a small economic loss than if the person incurs little or no economic loss. We explain the effect using a reasonable-anchor account: if the victim incurs little or no economic loss, people will base their assessment of total compensation on what they consider the emotional loss is worth; if the victim also incurs a non-trivial economic loss, people will anchor their assessment on the economic loss, and if the economic loss is small, the compensation will also be small. In other words, the presence of an economic loss “crowds out” the emotional loss in assessment of total compensation. This research enriches our knowledge about how laypeople make compensation decisions for emotional losses, and when they use economic losses as anchors.





  • The macroeconomic environment and the psychology of work evaluation
    Publication date: January 2018
    Source:Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Volume 144

    Author(s): Nina Sirola, Marko Pitesa

    This research tested the idea that the perception of the state of the macroeconomic environment impacts the psychology underlying an essential organizational function: The evaluation of employees’ work and the associated promotion and demotion decisions. We predicted that when the macroeconomic environment is perceived to be more (less) prosperous, people’s generalized sense of the extent to which individuals have control over outcomes increases (decreases), leading them to attribute more (less) responsibility for work outcomes to individuals rather than contextual influences. In Study 1, we tested this theory using data from 124,400 respondents surveyed across 57 countries and 19years and data about objective indicators of their macroeconomic environments. We found that in more prosperous times, people reported a higher generalized sense of control and were less likely to believe that contextual influences, such as luck, matter for work success. In Studies 2 and 3, we manipulated the perception of the macroeconomic environment among employees working in organizations, and we found that those who perceived their economic environment to be more prosperous had a higher generalized sense of control and in turn attributed more responsibility for a work outcome to the individual performing the work, resulting in more extreme promotion and demotion decisions. The consideration of the macroeconomic context of organizational decision making bridges the macro–micro divide in organizational sciences to provide a novel explanation for individual psychology and behavior underlying fundamental organizational processes.





  • When sharing hurts: How and why self-disclosing weakness undermines the task-oriented relationships of higher status disclosers
    Publication date: January 2018
    Source:Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Volume 144

    Author(s): Kerry Roberts Gibson, Dana Harari, Jennifer Carson Marr

    It is generally believed that self-disclosure has positive effects, particularly for relationships; however, we predict and find negative effects in the context of task-oriented relationships. Across three laboratory experiments, we find that both task-relevant (Study 1) and task-irrelevant (Studies 2 and 3) weakness disclosures, made by a higher (versus peer) status coworker during an interdependent task, negatively affected the receiver’s perception of the discloser’s status and consequently undermined the discloser’s influence, encouraged task conflict, and led to lower relationship quality with the discloser. Peer status disclosers did not trigger these negative responses. We find support for perceived vulnerability as the proposed psychological process (Study 3). Specifically, higher (but not peer) status disclosers experience a status penalty after weakness disclosures because these disclosures signal vulnerability, which violates the expectations people have for higher (but not peer) status coworkers. These findings provide insight into the effects of self-disclosing weakness at work and the ways in which high status employees may inadvertently trigger their own status loss.





  • When corporate social responsibility motivates employee citizenship behavior: The sensitizing role of task significance
    Publication date: January 2018
    Source:Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Volume 144

    Author(s): Madeline Ong, David M. Mayer, Leigh P. Tost, Ned Wellman

    Scholars have proposed that organizations’ corporate social responsibility (CSR) efforts are often positively associated with employees’ organizational citizenship behaviors (OCB) and have invoked identity-based mechanisms to explain this relationship. Complementing these perspectives, we develop a CSR sensitivity framework that explains how task significance, a micro-level job characteristic, can sensitize employees to their organizations’ macro-level CSR efforts, thereby strengthening the association between CSR and OCB. Across three field studies, we find that CSR and task significance interact to predict OCB, such that an organization’s CSR is more positively associated with OCB among employees who report higher task significance than among those who report lower task significance. Furthermore, we find support for prosocial motivation as a mediator of this interactive effect, but we do not find evidence for several alternative mediators. We discuss the implications of our findings for the literatures on CSR, job design, and other-oriented approaches to organizational behavior.





  • When social identity threat leads to the selection of identity-reinforcing options: The role of public self-awareness
    Publication date: January 2018
    Source:Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Volume 144

    Author(s): Katherine White, Madelynn Stackhouse, Jennifer J. Argo

    This research shows that activating public self-awareness leads individuals to increase their association with symbolic representations of their identity. When a social identity was threatened, participants high rather than low in public self-awareness were more likely to select options that reinforced their association with the identity (Studies 1a, 1b, and 2). This response was mediated by the desire to convey a consistent self to others (Study 2). In line with the view that the effects are driven by public self-consistency motives, the effects emerge only among those motivated to convey a consistent public self-image (Study 3) and when product choices can be viewed by others (Study 4). Finally, when identity threat occurred in the presence of an ingroup audience, those high (but not low) in ingroup identification were more likely to select identity-reinforcing options when public self-awareness was heightened (Study 5). The theoretical and practical implications of these findings are discussed.





  • Fate as a motivated (and de-motivating) belief: Evidence for a link from task importance to belief in fate to effort
    Publication date: January 2018
    Source:Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Volume 144

    Author(s): Simone Tang, Meredith King, Aaron C. Kay

    The perception of whether one has personal control over a specific task or goal has been shown to be a crucial predictor of effort and persistence. Given this, one might expect people to perceive high personal control over tasks that are very important. However, drawing on emerging theories of motivated ideological belief, we suggest that, in some circumstances, the more a task or goal is perceived as important, the more likely people may be to believe that the outcome is “fated” – that the outcome of an event is predetermined and meant to be. Across four studies, employing diverse samples and contexts, we provide evidence for this basic phenomenon and the negative repercussions it can hold for effort expenditure. Implications and avenues for future research are discussed.





  • Who cares if “service with a smile” is authentic? An expectancy-based model of customer race and differential service reactions
    Publication date: January 2018
    Source:Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Volume 144

    Author(s): Lawrence Houston, Alicia A. Grandey, Katina Sawyer

    Service with a smile improves performance ratings—but it is unclear if that smile must be authentic. We propose that reactions to display authenticity depend on perceivers’ race, due to a history of differential service experiences. These experiences are proposed to change the meaning of display authenticity, such that Whites are more likely to use authenticity to judge service performance, and Blacks are more likely to use authenticity to judge provider trustworthiness. We first confirmed that Blacks have lower service expectations than Whites due to a history of mistreatment. In two experimental studies, we then show that authenticity is important for service judgments (expectation disconfirmation, which predicted satisfaction and store loyalty) for Whites, but has no effect for Blacks. Display authenticity determined judgments of trustworthiness regardless of perceiver race. Our findings underscore the biased treatment that some customers have come to expect and the challenge of pleasing a diverse customer-base.





  • The interpersonal effects of emotion intensity in customer service: Perceived appropriateness and authenticity of attendants' emotional displays shape customer trust and satisfaction
    Publication date: January 2018
    Source:Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Volume 144

    Author(s): Arik Cheshin, Adi Amit, Gerben A. van Kleef

    Emotional expressions have a pervasive impact on organizational behavior. However, it is unclear how such effects are modulated by the intensity of emotional displays. We investigated in online, laboratory, and field experiments how varying intensities of service providers’ emotional displays (expressed through text, intonation, or physical displays) influence customer service outcomes. We show that in mundane service interactions, displays of intense happiness or sadness are interpreted as inappropriate and inauthentic, and lead to reduced trust in the service provider. We further demonstrate the mediating effect of trust on satisfaction with the service (Study 1), expected satisfaction with the product (Studies 2 and 3), and actual product use (Study 4). The studies highlight perceptions of appropriateness and sincerity as mechanisms underlying the interpersonal effects of emotional intensity. We propose that emotional intensity be incorporated in theorizing and research on organizational behavior to arrive at a more complete understanding of emotional dynamics.





http://rss.sciencedirect.com/publication/science/07495978

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