Perceived overqualification and counterproductive work behavior: testing the mediating role of relative deprivation and the moderating role of ambition
Article publication date: 10 August 2020
Issue publication date: 10 March 2021
The purpose of this study was to test the mediating role of relative deprivation in the relationship between perceived overqualification and counterproductive work behavior. In addition to testing this mediation, the authors posited that ambition would interact with perceived overqualification to predict relative deprivation and, through it, counterproductive work behavior.
Survey data collected from 181 employees were analyzed using the SPSS macro PROCESS to test the proposed moderated mediation model.
Results indicated that perceived overqualification positively associated with perceptions of relative deprivation, which were, in turn, positively related to counterproductive work behavior. This indirect relationship gained in strength with increasing levels of ambition.
By modeling and measuring relative deprivation, this study offers a direct test of the often-invoked relative deprivation explanation of the implications of perceived overqualification for counterproductive work behavior. The study also shows how ambition can have unintended consequences.
Schreurs, B., Hamstra, M.R.W., Jawahar, I.M. and Akkermans, J. (2020), "Perceived overqualification and counterproductive work behavior: testing the mediating role of relative deprivation and the moderating role of ambition", Personnel Review, Vol. 50 No. 3, pp. 1038-1055. https://doi.org/10.1108/PR-05-2019-0237
Emerald Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2020, Emerald Publishing Limited