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Older workers: stereotypes and occupational self-efficacy

Rita Chiesa (Department of Psychology, University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy)
Stefano Toderi (Department of Psychology, University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy)
Paola Dordoni (Department of Brain and Behavioural Sciences, Applied Psychology Unit, University of Pavia, Pavia, Italy)
Kene Henkens (NIDI, The Hague, The Netherlands) (Department of Sociology and Anthropology, University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands) (Department of Public Health, University Medical Center Groningen (UMCG), Groningen, The Netherlands)
Elena Maria Fiabane (Department of Brain and Behavioural Sciences, Applied Psychology Unit, University of Pavia, Pavia, Italy)
Ilaria Setti (Department of Brain and Behavioural Sciences, Applied Psychology Unit, University of Pavia, Pavia, Italy)

Journal of Managerial Psychology

ISSN: 0268-3946

Article publication date: 12 September 2016

3131

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the relationship between organizational age stereotypes and occupational self-efficacy. First, the authors intend to test the measurement invariance of Henkens’s (2005) age stereotypes scale across two age group, respectively, under 50 and 50 years and older. Then, the moderator role of age groups in the relationship between age stereotypes and occupational self-efficacy is investigated.

Design/methodology/approach

The survey involved a large sample of 4,667 Italian bank sector’s employees.

Findings

The results show the invariance of the three dimensional structure of organizational stereotypes towards older workers scale: productivity, reliability and adaptability. Furthermore, the moderation is confirmed: the relationship between organizational age stereotypes and occupational self-efficacy is significant only for older respondents.

Research limitations/implications

Future studies should aim to replicate the findings with longitudinal designs.

Practical implications

The study suggests the importance to emphasize the positive characteristics of older workers and to reduce the presence of negative age stereotypes in the workplace, especially in order to foster the occupational self-efficacy of older workers.

Originality/value

The findings are especially relevant in view of the lack of evidence about the relationship between age stereotypes and occupational self-efficacy.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

Kène Henkens was supported by the Netherlands Institute of Advanced Study (NIAS), while working on this project.

Citation

Chiesa, R., Toderi, S., Dordoni, P., Henkens, K., Fiabane, E.M. and Setti, I. (2016), "Older workers: stereotypes and occupational self-efficacy", Journal of Managerial Psychology, Vol. 31 No. 7, pp. 1152-1166. https://doi.org/10.1108/JMP-11-2015-0390

Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2016, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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