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Book part
Publication date: 7 June 2016

Ashley O’Donoghue, Edel Conway and Janine Bosak

This chapter investigates the relationship between abusive supervision and employee well-being (i.e., job satisfaction, engagement) and ill-being (i.e., burnout…

Abstract

Purpose

This chapter investigates the relationship between abusive supervision and employee well-being (i.e., job satisfaction, engagement) and ill-being (i.e., burnout, workaholism) and examines whether follower core self-evaluations (CSE) moderate this relationship.

Methodology/approach

The study uses cross-sectional survey data collected from 111 professional employees across a range of industry sectors.

Findings

Results show that abusive supervision is negatively related to employee well-being (i.e., engagement and job satisfaction) and positively related to employee ill-being, namely burnout. In addition, employees low in CSE are less engaged and less satisfied than employees high in CSE.

Research limitations/implications

The study’s cross-sectional design limits the strength of its conclusions.

Practical implications

This chapter notes the ethical and legal obligations of organizations to provide a safe working environment and identifies the policies and procedures that will signal a commitment to employee well-being.

Originality/value

The study contributes to the leadership and well-being literatures by exploring the influence of abusive leaders on follower well-being and engagement. It also goes beyond merely identifying correlations between leadership style and follower well-being outcomes to investigate how leader and follower attributes can combine to influence these outcomes.

Details

Emotions and Organizational Governance
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78560-998-5

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Article
Publication date: 7 May 2019

Shuti Steph Khumalo

The present study contributes to the growing body of research on abusive supervision in school settings, particularly by principals. School leadership (principal) behavior…

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1050

Abstract

Purpose

The present study contributes to the growing body of research on abusive supervision in school settings, particularly by principals. School leadership (principal) behavior has been a topical issue for decades in educational research. This paper attempts to add to scholarly knowledge in the area of school leadership and specifically the effect of abusive school leadership on organizational productivity and organization citizen behavior. Put succinctly, the purpose of this paper is to examine the implications of abusive school leadership on school performance and teacher behavior. Abusive leadership is attributable to behavior that is deviant, antisocial and counter-productive and that which is uncivil.

Design/methodology/approach

In examining abusive school leadership behavior and its effect on school performance and teacher behavior, this conceptual paper draws heavily from an in-depth analysis of extant scholarship and uses Rawls theory of social justice as a conceptual tool. Social justice theorists believe that social institutions are embedded with immense responsibility of dispensing justice, fairness and equity.

Findings

Building from these relevant literatures and grounding the argument from the Rawlsian perspective of social justice, it can be argued that abusive school leadership perpetuates unfair and unjust practices toward teachers, which negatively affects performance. Literature reviewed convincingly indicates that abusive tendencies are practiced in school by school leadership. Further, these abusive practices negatively impact on the following: teacher productivity, teacher turnover and, finally, staff members’ well-being and health. The findings confirm that these practices perpetuate social injustice. Schools are social institutions and have to ensure that justice is served on all members of the organization, and, for this reason, Rawls (1971) argues that justice is the first virtue of social institutions.

Practical implications

The findings of this study have a number of important implications for future practice. It is critical in this study to suggest that in trying to deal with scourge, tougher measures need to be taken by various education departments to ensure that the problem is dealt with effectively. One of the interventions that is suggested is tougher policy positions on matters related to abusive leadership. In education departments that have legislation regarding consequences regarding abusive school leadership practices, tougher action should be taken against leadership which practice abuse.

Originality/value

School leadership is a highly contested research space and this conceptual paper is of great value because it adds to the already existing insights and understanding in abusive leadership in educational settings. This paper is of great significance because it focuses on the effect of abusive school leadership on teachers’ behavior and school performance.

Details

International Journal of Educational Management, vol. 33 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-354X

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Article
Publication date: 4 November 2019

Sumi Jha

The purpose of this paper is to explore the relationship between psychological safety (PS) and employee retention (ER) when psychological empowerment (PE) is a mediator…

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1076

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the relationship between psychological safety (PS) and employee retention (ER) when psychological empowerment (PE) is a mediator variable and abusive leadership is a moderating variable.

Design/methodology/approach

The study was conducted by receiving responses from managers and supervisors of the telecom industry. The sample size was 337. Standard questionnaires were used to collect data. Moderated mediation analysis was conducted to capture the differences on the effect of ER because of the presence of abusive leadership.

Findings

The findings of the study revealed that the abusive leadership moderates the relationship between employees PS and PE. The mediation effect of PE between PS and ER relationship was found to be significant. The relationship got weaker in the presence of high abusive leadership and stronger in the presence of low abusive leadership.

Practical implications

The paper discusses the drawbacks of abusive leadership on ER. Abusive leadership may bring immediate results. Employees may respond out of fear but would leave the organization as soon as they will get the opportunity.

Originality/value

The study on the abusive leadership is relatively less. The moderating role of abusive leadership on ER would add to the subject knowledge.

Details

Industrial and Commercial Training, vol. 51 no. 7/8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0019-7858

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Article
Publication date: 9 March 2010

Alison Starratt and Gina Grandy

The purpose of this paper is to develop a model of abusive leadership as experienced by young workers. Abusive leadership is understood to be subjective and as such this…

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4339

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to develop a model of abusive leadership as experienced by young workers. Abusive leadership is understood to be subjective and as such this research seeks to explore the experience of abusive leadership through a qualitative approach.

Design/methodology/approach

Drawing on interviews with 30 young workers who identified themselves as having a “bad” boss, this study employs a constructivist grounded theory approach in order to identify behaviours, moderators and outcomes of abusive leadership.

Findings

A definition and model of abusive leadership as experienced by young workers is proposed. The model details 11 behaviours, five moderators and six individual and two organizational outcomes of abusive leadership.

Originality/value

The adoption of a constructivist grounded theory approach reveals several unique factors that moderate the relationship between behaviors and outcomes of abusive leadership in young workers. By grounding the model in the actual experiences of young workers, the paper offers possibilities for future research on abusive leadership and young workers and across demographic groups.

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Leadership & Organization Development Journal, vol. 31 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7739

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Article
Publication date: 6 April 2021

Birgit Schyns

Research reported in this manuscript focuses on the relationship between trait suspicion and the perception of abusive supervision. Based on previous research, the authors…

Abstract

Purpose

Research reported in this manuscript focuses on the relationship between trait suspicion and the perception of abusive supervision. Based on previous research, the authors assume that suspicion is positively related to the perception of abusive supervision. The role implicit theories play in this relationship is examined.

Design/methodology/approach

Two studies are presented to examine the relationship between trait suspicion and the perception of abusive supervision as moderated by implicit leadership theories. The first study is a survey study, and the second study is an experimental vignette study.

Findings

Results of both studies indicate that suspicion is positively related to the perception of abusive supervision and that implicit leadership theories moderate the relationship between suspicion and the perception of abusive supervision.

Research limitations/implications

Results are interpreted in terms of biases in leadership perception as well as the reversing-the-lens perspective.

Originality/value

While there is progress in taking into account follower characteristics and the resulting perceptual biases in the study of constructive leadership phenomena such as transformational leadership, less is know about the follower perception aspect of destructive leadership phenomena. With this research, the authors extend research into the influence of follower characteristics on the perception of abusive supervision and also look at boundary conditions of this relationship by including implicit leadership theories as a moderator.

Details

Leadership & Organization Development Journal, vol. 42 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7739

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Book part
Publication date: 8 July 2021

Jan Schilling and Birgit Schyns

Research has overwhelmingly focused on the positive side of leadership in the past. However, research into negative aspects of leadership is picking up pace. This chapter…

Abstract

Research has overwhelmingly focused on the positive side of leadership in the past. However, research into negative aspects of leadership is picking up pace. This chapter will provide an overview of two prominent aspects of negative leadership, namely, abusive supervision and laissez-faire leadership. Research has shown that both types of leadership have significant negative consequences both for organisations as a whole as well as individual followers. Examples include lower job satisfaction, stress, as well as lowered performances and a higher likelihood of counter-productive work behaviour. Both abusive supervision and laissez-faire researchers acknowledge that these leadership styles take effect through the perception of followers. That is, they consider that the same behaviour can be interpreted differently by different followers and will, hence, lead to different follower-related outcomes. Abusive supervision and laissez-faire are, however, very different in terms of the actual leader behaviours described. While abusive supervision is a style that is actively destructive, laissez-faire is destructive via lack of support for followers' goal achievement. We end the chapter with an outlook for future research, notably an attempt to systematise future research into destructive leadership with respect to the different forms it can take.

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Article
Publication date: 12 December 2019

Srikanth P.B.

More than a decade of research on abusive leader behaviors suggests a consensus regarding its deleterious effects on employees’ contextual performance. Therefore, research…

Abstract

Purpose

More than a decade of research on abusive leader behaviors suggests a consensus regarding its deleterious effects on employees’ contextual performance. Therefore, research on how to cope with abusive leader behaviors is both theoretically and practically important. The purpose of this paper is to examine how individuals’ personality and appropriate coping strategy may jointly help in weakening the negative effects of abusive leader behaviors.

Design/methodology/approach

The study examines the relationship between social support coping strategy and agreeableness. Data collected from full-time employees and their reporting managers were used for analyses. Data were analyzed using moderated regression techniques followed by conditional indirect effects testing.

Findings

The study provides supports to the evidence that the relationship between abusive leader behaviors and contextual performance was weaker for employees high in agreeableness. Additionally, the use of social support coping strategy facilitated a negative relationship between abusive leader behaviors and contextual performance. Finally, the moderating effects of agreeableness were mediated by the use of social support coping strategy.

Research limitations/implications

The study contributes to theories of abusive supervision, personality and coping strategies. The results offer insights into the joint roles of personality and the social support coping strategy that may weaken the negative influence of abusive leader behaviors and contextual performance.

Practical implications

Human resource practitioners may benefit from formally institutionalizing social support through mentoring programs and informally through “buddy” programs for newly joined employees, to understand the organization culture and voice their concerns.

Originality/value

While most studies on abusive leader behavior focused on the deleterious effects, this study is one of the few that explores the role of coping strategy while dealing with abusive leader.

Details

Personnel Review, vol. 49 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0048-3486

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Article
Publication date: 26 February 2021

Thomas H. Stone and I.M. Jawahar

This paper aims to offer a new leadership perspective based on the premise that leader effectiveness depends on the context in which leadership behaviors are enacted.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to offer a new leadership perspective based on the premise that leader effectiveness depends on the context in which leadership behaviors are enacted.

Design/methodology/approach

Literature in the areas of abusive supervision and leadership were reviewed. Using social learning and attribution theories, this study develops propositions regarding the role of perceived abusive supervision in high vs low-intensity organizations.

Findings

In this theoretical account, this paper distinguishes between low and high-intensity work organizational contexts articulating a rationale for conditions appropriate for directive leadership. This paper posits that while directive leadership will be more prevalent in high-intensity contexts, it will be specifically targeted toward poor performers, those with personality characteristics that are tied to poor performance and those engaging in deviant behaviors. This study proposes that outcomes of directive leadership will depend on how it aligns with organizational norms and culture and the causality attributed to such behaviors.

Research limitations/implications

Recent leadership theories focus on nurturing and providing support to followers. This paper posits that such theories are suited to low-intensity organizations. This study offers a counterintuitive perspective in proposing that directive leadership which involves inducing stress, will lead to better outcomes in high-intensity organizational contexts. This paper offers testable propositions and avenues for future research on directive leadership in high-intensity organizational contexts.

Practical implications

Based on the premise that leadership is context-dependent, this study proposes that directive leadership is best suited in high-intensity organizational contexts, which is a novel proposal. Even within these high-intensity contexts, such leadership, this paper proposes will be targeted toward poor performers and employees with characteristics that are tied to poor performance and violation of organizational norms.

Social implications

Examination of the role of directive leadership in high intensity, clan culture organizations may facilitate understanding that effective leadership styles may differ depending upon the organization context.

Originality/value

Based on the premise that leadership is context-dependent, this study presents a novel proposal that directive leadership is most suited to high-intensity organizational contexts. Even within these high-intensity contexts, such leadership, this paper posits will be targeted toward poor performers and employees with personality characteristics associated with poor and deviant performance.

Details

Management Research Review, vol. 44 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-8269

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Article
Publication date: 8 February 2016

Wenxing Liu, Pengcheng Zhang, Jianqiao Liao, Po Hao and Jianghua Mao

Prior researches have indicated that leadership had an important impact on employee creativity. However, the authors know little about the link between the dark side of…

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4256

Abstract

Purpose

Prior researches have indicated that leadership had an important impact on employee creativity. However, the authors know little about the link between the dark side of leadership-abusive supervision, and employee creativity, as well as its underlying mechanisms. Combining psychological safety theory and social identification theory, the purpose of this paper is to examine the relationship between abusive supervision and employee creativity and the mediating role of psychological safety and organizational identification between abusive supervision and employee creativity.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors conducted a multi-source and time-lagged data collection. At Time 1, team members evaluated abusive supervision and psychological safety, and at Time 2, team members evaluated organization identification, and team leaders evaluated members’ creativity. Abusive supervision, psychological safety were evaluated at first stage and organizational identification, creativity were evaluated at second stage, being conducted 2-4 weeks later after the first stage. Finally 423 participants completed two waves of data collection.

Findings

The results suggested that, abusive supervision had negative effects on psychological safety and organizational identification, and psychological safety partially mediated the relationship between abusive supervision and organizational identification, and organizational identification fully mediated the relationship between psychological safety and creativity, and the negative effect of abusive supervision on employee creativity was mediated by psychological safety and then by organizational identification.

Originality/value

This study identifies and examines the mechanism underlying the effect of abusive supervision, and suggests that psychological safety and organizational identification are two important mediators of the complex relationship between abusive supervision and employee creativity. Therefore, this study not only re-examines the inconsistent effect of abusive supervision on employee creativity, but also represents the first attempt at integrating the psychological safety perspective and social identification theory to study employee creativity and offers important implications for theory development.

Details

Management Decision, vol. 54 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0025-1747

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Article
Publication date: 10 September 2021

Yucheng Zhang, Zhongwei Hou, Xingxing Zhou, Yumeng Yue, Siqi Liu, XiaoXiao Jiang and Ling Li

Despite recent organizational behavior studies have witnessed considerable progress in abusive supervision research; some demerits for both theory and methodology still…

Abstract

Purpose

Despite recent organizational behavior studies have witnessed considerable progress in abusive supervision research; some demerits for both theory and methodology still remain in the past years. To clarify the current state of knowledge in the field, this study aims to analyze the current state of theories and methods on abusive supervision and provides a detailed future research agenda.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper conducted a literature review for both theory and methodology of the abusive supervision research using a content analysis of 134 publications.

Findings

For the theory part, this paper summarized the theories that had been applied to explain the relationship between abusive supervision and its consequences as well as antecedents. For the methodology part, this paper outlined some critical issues regarding country of origin, research design, measurement, analysis strategy and also summarized with a discussion of the relationship between methodological issues and article impact. Finally, this paper concluded by presenting an agenda for future abusive supervision research regarding both theory and methodology.

Originality/value

First, this paper summarizes the main theories, antecedents and consequences often used in abusive supervision research to allow scholars to carry out theoretically driven research investigating abusive supervision in the future. Second, through a content analysis of the methods sections of abusive supervision research in the samples (i.e. country of origin, research design, measurement and analytical procedures), this paper identified the potential reasons underlying the inconsistency in the conclusions of abusive supervision research and provide some guidance for future empirical studies. Third, based on the qualitative review, this paper provides an agenda for future research investigating abusive supervision by developing a content-specific theoretical framework to benchmark abusive supervision research against other research related to leadership and offers an accurate response to scholars’ criticisms of abusive supervision research.

Details

Chinese Management Studies, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1750-614X

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