In this study, we explore what incites anger in business executives when making organizational decisions. In an inductive analysis of interviews with business executives about decisions where they experienced anger, six different triggers of anger – all related to behavioral-ethics issues – emerged. Two distinct attitudes toward anger – “negative” and “integrated” – also emerged as a significant theme. Based on our findings, we argue that anger may operate like an “ethical barometer” that informs an individual of potential ethical violations at any point in a decision-making process. The implications of these emergent findings for organizational practice and research on affect and decision-making are discussed.
Mickel, A.E. and Ozcelik, H. (2008), "Chapter 6 When executives get angry: the importance of anger and its triggers to ethical awareness and sensitivity", Zerbe, W.J., Härtel, C.E.J. and Ashkanasy, N.M. (Ed.) Emotions, Ethics and Decision-Making (Research on Emotion in Organizations, Vol. 4), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 131-154. https://doi.org/10.1016/S1746-9791(08)04006-6
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