Employee silence: Quiescence and acquiescence as responses to perceived injustice

Research in Personnel and Human Resources Management

ISBN: 978-0-76230-840-8, eISBN: 978-1-84950-134-7

ISSN: 0742-7301

Publication date: 5 December 2001

Abstract

Although employee silence is pervasive in organizations, its study has been neglected for a variety of reasons, including the assumption that it is a unitary concept meaning little more than inactive endorsement. We review disparate literatures to reveal additional meanings and conceptual complexities related to silence to stimulate its study in work organizations. We develop the concept of employee silence and introduce two attendant forms (i.e. quiescence and acquiescence) along with their behavioral, affective, and cognitive components. We also offer a model that explains why some mistreated employees become silent, how some break their silence, and what organizational contexts produce and reinforce employee silence. Implications of the model for human resource management as well as for future research are discussed.

Citation

Pinder, C. and Harlos, K. (2001), "Employee silence: Quiescence and acquiescence as responses to perceived injustice", Research in Personnel and Human Resources Management (Research in Personnel and Human Resources Management, Vol. 20), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 331-369. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0742-7301(01)20007-3

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Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2001, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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