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The effects of hiring decisions on the level of discipline used in response to poor performance

Joseph A. Bellizzi (Arizona State University‐West, School of Management, Phoenix, Arizona, USA)
Ronald W. Hasty (Department of Marketing, University of North Texas, Denton, Texas, USA)

Management Decision

ISSN: 0025-1747

Article publication date: 1 April 2000



The study’s hypothesis posited that a supervisor would use more severe discipline when sales subordinates engage in unethical sales practices when salespeople are hired directly by the supervising manager rather than by the personnel department. Based on attributional self‐justification theory, it was reasoned that under the condition of initially making the decision to hire, a supervisor would attribute undesirable behavior entirely to the salesperson, resulting in more severe disciplinary action. In cases where the initial hiring decision was made by the personnel department, less severe discipline was expected due to the sales manager’s willingness to allocate some responsibility for the undesirable behavior to the hiring department. Furthermore, if a hiring sales manager senses any responsibility for the undesirable behavior he or she can be expected to take strong action to decisively turn the event around in order to demonstrate the correctness of the hiring decision. The results support the expectation.



Bellizzi, J.A. and Hasty, R.W. (2000), "The effects of hiring decisions on the level of discipline used in response to poor performance", Management Decision, Vol. 38 No. 3, pp. 154-159.




Copyright © 2000, MCB UP Limited

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