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Better late than early? Reviewing procrastination in organizations

Rahul Singh Chauhan (West Texas A&M University, Canyon, Texas, USA)
Alexandra E. MacDougall (Central Michigan University, Mt. Pleasant, Michigan, USA)
Michael Ronald Buckley (University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma, USA)
David Charles Howe (West Texas A&M University, Canyon, Texas, USA)
Marisa E. Crisostomo (West Texas A&M University, Canyon, Texas, USA)
Thomas Zeni (University of Washington, Seattle, Washington, USA)

Management Research Review

ISSN: 2040-8269

Article publication date: 30 April 2020

Issue publication date: 30 September 2020




Procrastination is regularly presented as a behavior to avoid, but this paper argues that individuals who strategically engage in procrastination may experience unique performance benefits that non-procrastinators do not. The purpose of this paper is to present a balanced framework from which procrastination, beginning with a review of the procrastination performance literature and historical stance on the behavior, can be understood.


This paper presents and reviews the use of procrastination in organizations.


Our findings indicate that while procrastination can be dysfunctional, it can prove to be strategically valuable. To summarize, this paper recommends a holistic conceptualization of procrastination that refrains from value judgment and calls for rethinking the stigma associated with the behavior.


This paper highlights both the theoretical and practical importance of exploring the benefits of procrastination in an organizational context.



Chauhan, R.S., MacDougall, A.E., Buckley, M.R., Howe, D.C., Crisostomo, M.E. and Zeni, T. (2020), "Better late than early? Reviewing procrastination in organizations", Management Research Review, Vol. 43 No. 10, pp. 1289-1308.



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