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Article
Publication date: 1 April 2003

Oluremi B. Ayoko, Victor J. Callan and Charmine E.J. Härtel

Using a multi‐method approach, this paper presents both a qualitative and quantitative examination of workplace conflict, the emotional reactions to bullying and…

Abstract

Using a multi‐method approach, this paper presents both a qualitative and quantitative examination of workplace conflict, the emotional reactions to bullying and counterproductive behaviors. Three studies were undertaken for the present research. Data for Study 1 emerged from semi‐structured interviews conducted with 50 group leaders and members from six workgroups in two large organizations. Interviews were transcribed and analyzed using systematic interpretative techniques. Findings from Study 1 showed that conflict induced a variety of emotional and behavioral responses. Data from Study 2 were collected from 660 employees from 7 public sector organizations using a structured open‐ended survey. Results from Study 2 revealed that the majority of respondents perceived their managers as bullies. Study 3 surveyed 510 staff in 122 workgroups from five organizations. Regression analysis revealed that differing conflict events were associated with bullying, emotional reactions and counterproductive behaviors. In particular, prolonged conflict increased incidents of bullying. Higher levels of bullying were predictive of workplace counterproductive behaviors such as purposely wasting company material and supplies, purposely doing one's work incorrectly and purposely damaging a valuable piece of property belonging to the employer.

Details

The International Journal of Organizational Analysis, vol. 11 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1055-3185

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Article
Publication date: 19 March 2018

Hyo Sun Jung and Hye Hyun Yoon

This study aims to investigate the effects of workplace bullying on the coping strategies (responses) and counterproductive behavior of hospitality employees.

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to investigate the effects of workplace bullying on the coping strategies (responses) and counterproductive behavior of hospitality employees.

Design/methodology/approach

The sample consisted of 284 luxury hotel employees in the Korean hospitality industry. SPSS and AMOS were the statistical programs used to verify the hypotheses of the present study. Confirmatory factor analysis and reliability analysis were conducted to verify the validity and reliability of the measured items. Before verification of the hypotheses, directivity between factors derived through correlation analysis was verified, and causal relationships with regard to the three hypotheses were verified through the structural equation model.

Findings

Organizational and work-related bullying had a significant effect on task coping, whereas personal bullying had a significant effect on emotional and avoidance coping. The results also showed that positive task coping did not significantly affect counterproductive behavior, but negative coping, such as emotional and avoidance responses, significantly affected employees’ counterproductive behavior.

Originality/value

The present study verified that coping responses in work situations can differ depending on the type of workplace bullying that occurs. Task coping, a positive coping strategy, was affected by organizational and work-related bullying, whereas emotional and avoidance coping, negative coping strategies, were negatively affected by personal bullying. Consequently, the possibility of harmful actions against organizations varies depending on the coping strategies chosen by employees who are exposed to bullying. Therefore, appropriate education should be offered to employees to use positive and proactive work-oriented coping strategies when dealing with bullying rather than negative methods such as emotional or avoidance coping.

Details

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, vol. 30 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-6119

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Article
Publication date: 30 March 2020

Alexander Serenko

This study aims to explore the existence of knowledge sabotage in the contemporary organization from the perspective of the target.

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to explore the existence of knowledge sabotage in the contemporary organization from the perspective of the target.

Design/methodology/approach

This study collected and analyzed 172 critical incidents reported by 109 employees who were targets of knowledge sabotage in their organizations.

Findings

Over 50 per cent of employees experienced at least one knowledge sabotage incident. Knowledge sabotage is driven by three factors, namely, gratification, retaliation against other employees and one’s malevolent personality. Knowledge saboteurs are more likely to provide intangible than tangible knowledge. Knowledge sabotage results in extremely negative consequences for individuals, organizations and third parties. Organizations often indirectly facilitate knowledge sabotage among their employees. Both knowledge saboteurs and their targets believe in their innocence – saboteurs are certain that their action was a necessary response to targets’ inappropriate workplace behavior, whereas targets insist on their innocence and hold saboteurs solely responsible.

Practical implications

Organizations should recruit employees with compatible personalities and working styles, introduce inter-employee conflict prevention and resolution procedures, develop anti-knowledge sabotage policies, clearly articulate the individual and organizational consequences of knowledge sabotage and eliminate zero-sum game-based incentives and rewards.

Originality/value

This is the first study documenting knowledge sabotage from the target’s perspective.

Details

Journal of Knowledge Management, vol. 24 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1367-3270

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Article
Publication date: 15 July 2019

Alexander Serenko

This paper introduces the concept of knowledge sabotage as an extreme form of counterproductive knowledge behavior, presents its typology, and empirically demonstrates its…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper introduces the concept of knowledge sabotage as an extreme form of counterproductive knowledge behavior, presents its typology, and empirically demonstrates its existence in the contemporary organization.

Design/methodology/approach

Through the application of the critical incident technique, this study analyzes 177 knowledge sabotage incidents when employees intentionally provided others with wrong knowledge or deliberately concealed critical knowledge while clearly realizing others’ need for this knowledge and others’ ability to apply it to important work-related tasks.

Findings

Over 40% of employees engaged in knowledge sabotage, and many did so repeatedly. Knowledge saboteurs usually acted against their fellow co-workers, and one-half of all incidents were caused by interpersonal issues resulting from the target’s hostile behavior, failure to provide assistance to others, and poor performance. Knowledge sabotage was often expressed in the form of revenge against a particular individual, who, as a result, may have been reprimanded, humiliated or terminated. Knowledge saboteurs rarely regretted their behavior, which further confirmed the maliciousness of their intentions.

Practical implications

Even though knowledge saboteurs only rarely acted against their organizations purposely, approximately one-half of all incidents produced negative, unintentional consequences to their organizations, such as time waste, failed or delayed projects, lost clients, unnecessary expenses, hiring costs, products being out-of-stock, understaffing, or poor quality of products or services. Organizations should develop comprehensive knowledge sabotage prevention policies. The best way to reduce knowledge sabotage is to improve inter-personal relationships among employees and to foster a friendly and collaborative environment.

Originality/value

This is the first well-documented attempt to understand the phenomenon of knowledge sabotage.

Details

Journal of Knowledge Management, vol. 23 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1367-3270

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Article
Publication date: 13 July 2015

Amjad Al-Nasser and Mohamed Behery

The purpose of this study is to establish both the validity of Western theories within the Middle East, namely, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and to further improve and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to establish both the validity of Western theories within the Middle East, namely, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and to further improve and extend our understanding of the effect of organisational coaching on counterproductive behaviours, such as bullying and alienation.

Design/methodology/approach

A sample size of 656 participants from 29 organisations and 14 different industries was employed. A research model was proposed, refined and tested through a quantitative paradigm using one dimension nonlinear principal components analysis, linear structural equation modelling (SEM) and MANOVA.

Findings

The correlation analysis results show non-significant negative correlations between coaching and all of the organisational counterproductive behaviour dimensions but not certainty. It was found that a significant weak relationship exists between most of the mediator dimensions, while a strong relationship exists between job alienation and workplace bullying. Results of the linear SEM provide support that coaching is related to certainty. Furthermore, the results reveal that certainty mediates a significant link between coaching and organisational counterproductive work behaviours (job alienation and bullying).

Originality/value

The study is considered the first in the UAE to investigate organisational counterproductive work behaviours (bullying and job alienation). The main contribution of this study is to quantify the relationship between organisational coaching and bullying and job alienation mediated by organisational climate dimensions.

Details

International Journal of Organizational Analysis, vol. 23 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1934-8835

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Article
Publication date: 22 March 2021

Ishfaq Ahmed, Talat Islam, Saima Ahmad and Ahmad Kaleem

The issue of customer mistreatment in food and retail sectors has come under the spotlight during the COVID-19 crisis. The purpose of this paper is to examine the problem…

Abstract

Purpose

The issue of customer mistreatment in food and retail sectors has come under the spotlight during the COVID-19 crisis. The purpose of this paper is to examine the problem in the COVID-19 pandemic context and study its implications for employee counterproductive behavior in the workplace. Specifically, this study aims to investigate the relationship between customer mistreatment and employee counterproductive behavior by considering the mediating role of cognitive rumination and moderating role of servant leadership at coffee cafés that operated during the COVID-19 smart lockdown period.

Design/methodology/approach

Structured questionnaires were distributed to 479 frontline staff working at cafés and coffee shops located in two large cities of Pakistan. The questionnaire data were analyzed by using bootstrapped regression procedures to determine how the investigated variables influenced counterproductive work behavior during the pandemic.

Findings

The findings revealed a positive influence of customer mistreatment on counterproductive work behavior both directly as well as indirectly in the presence of employee rumination as a mediator. Furthermore, the presence of servant leadership at cafés and coffee shops was found to moderate the impact of customer mistreatment during the pandemic.

Originality/value

The study offers a novel insight into the relationships between mistreatment by customers, counterproductive work behavior, employee rumination and servant leadership in the COVID-19 pandemic context, hitherto unexplored.

Details

British Food Journal, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0007-070X

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Book part
Publication date: 10 August 2011

Suzy Fox and Arthur Freeman

We link counterproductive work behavior (CWB) (particularly workplace bullying) and organizational citizenship behavior to individual narcissism and organizational…

Abstract

We link counterproductive work behavior (CWB) (particularly workplace bullying) and organizational citizenship behavior to individual narcissism and organizational culture. We link counterproductive work culture in turn to organizations' leader(s), enumerating multiple roles an executive may play: actor, target, ignorer, enabler, rewarder, or, ultimately, champion of change. Both positive (citizenship) and negative (counterproductive) behaviors are associated with narcissism, a complex, multifaceted set of personality characteristics, primarily based on the individual's cognitive interpretation of self and the world. Theoretical interpretations of reactive CWB (stressor-emotion-control theory) and instrumental CWB (theory of planned behavior) support the development of coaching and counseling interventions. Cognitive behavioral theory (CBT)-based prescriptive executive coaching is proposed as a promising mechanism for redirecting narcissistic organizational players from counterproductive to citizenship schemas and behaviors.

Details

The Role of Individual Differences in Occupational Stress and Well Being
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-85724-711-7

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Article
Publication date: 30 September 2013

Dwayne Devonish

The purpose of this paper is to examine whether two factors of affective psychological well-being, job satisfaction, and work-related depression, play a role in mediating…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine whether two factors of affective psychological well-being, job satisfaction, and work-related depression, play a role in mediating the relationship between workplace bullying as a social stressor at work and three forms of employee performance or behaviors: task performance, individual-targeted citizenship behavior (OCB-I), and interpersonal counterproductive work behavior (CWB-P).

Design/methodology/approach

The paper adopted a cross-sectional survey research design which captured a sample of 262 employees across a number of organizations in a small developing country in the Caribbean region.

Findings

The findings revealed that job satisfaction alone partially mediated the relationship between workplace bullying and task performance, whereas work-related depression alone partially mediated the relationship between workplace bullying and OCB-I. Both job satisfaction and work-related depression partially mediated the relationship between workplace bullying and CWB-P.

Research limitations/implications

The paper utilized a cross-sectional self-report survey research design which does not permit causal inferences to be made. Longitudinal research is needed to further investigate these relationships reported here.

Practical implications

Management must seek to deal with the emergence of workplace bullying through their human resource management policies and practices as well as encouraging positive interpersonal work climates and cultures among employees.

Originality/value

The paper is the first to investigate how various elements of psychological well-being can serve to mediate the relationship between workplace bullying and performance outcomes.

Details

Employee Relations, vol. 35 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0142-5455

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 17 December 2018

Benjamin Mekpor and Kwasi Dartey-Baah

The purpose of this study is to determine whether there is a difference with the exhibition of voluntary workplace behaviors (i.e. organizational citizenship behaviors

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to determine whether there is a difference with the exhibition of voluntary workplace behaviors (i.e. organizational citizenship behaviors [OCB] and counterproductive workplace behaviors [CWB]) among employees of high and low-performing banks in Ghana.

Design/methodology/approach

The quantitative approach was adopted to collect data from employees of selected banks from Ghana’s Club 100. The independent t-test was used to categorize the exhibition of employees’ OCB and counterproductive workplace behaviors by the type bank (i.e. high- or low-performing banks).

Findings

Contrary to the speculations of the study, employees of high-performing banks did not score higher in the exhibition of OCB compared to low-performing banks. Employees of low-performing banks were also not found to score higher with respect to CWB as compared to those of high-performing banks.

Research limitations/implications

The research adopted a single rating method of collecting data from respondents. There could, however, be a level of biasness from the employees’ point of view of their exhibition of both OCB and CWB. Future research should thus seek to use a dyad method of collating data from both managers and employees of employees’ voluntary workplace behaviors. The study only focused on OCB as having a positive impact on the performance of banks and CWB having a negative impact. Future studies could also peruse both positive and negative impacts of OCB and CWB on the performance of organizations. An assessment of the various dimensions of both OCB and CWB (e.g. OCB-I, OCB-O, CWB-I and CWB-O) and their distinctive impacts on organizational performance is also suggested. Moreover, the adoption of only the quantitative approach to measuring the variables under the study was also identified as a limitation. This made it difficult to further peruse the intentions of employees to either engage in OCB or CWB. Further research could adopt the mixed-method approach that will add to the rigor in terms of the analyses. Researchers could also explore the same relationship among other sectors such as manufacturing. Further studies should also be conducted to peruse what promotes or inhibits the performance of banks irrespective of the voluntary workplace behaviors of the employees. More so, further research could also assess whether the workload of employees can predict employees’ voluntary workplace behaviors. Specific to the banking sector and others with the same working environment, future studies can investigate the factors that inhibit and encourage employees’ exhibition of OCB and CWB.

Practical implications

It was thus concluded that even though voluntary behaviors of employees influence the performance of organizations particularly banks, their effect is not that significant. This could be as a result of the tight schedules, structured and controlled nature of work activities in the banks that make employees so occupied throughout their working day to the extent they have perhaps no time to engage in extra-role activities. This calls for the need for banks to further explore other opportunities that contribute to boosting employee performance.

Originality/value

The study provides an in-depth account on whether OCB and CWB of employees predict the performance of organizations, especially banks in Ghana.

Details

International Journal of Organizational Analysis, vol. 27 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1934-8835

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Article
Publication date: 31 August 2020

Alexander Serenko and Chun Wei Choo

This study empirically tests the impact of the Dark Triad personality traits (narcissism, Machiavellianism, psychopathy) and co-worker competitiveness on knowledge sabotage.

Abstract

Purpose

This study empirically tests the impact of the Dark Triad personality traits (narcissism, Machiavellianism, psychopathy) and co-worker competitiveness on knowledge sabotage.

Design/methodology/approach

A model was constructed and tested by means of Partial Least Squares with data from 150 participants recruited via Amazon’s Mechanical Turk.

Findings

The individual personality traits of narcissism, Machiavellianism, and psychopathy are significant predictors of individual knowledge sabotage behavior, whereas co-worker Machiavellianism and psychopathy trigger co-worker knowledge sabotage. Out of the three Dark Triad traits, individual and co-worker psychopathy emerged as the strongest knowledge sabotage predictor. Co-worker competitiveness has a positive effect on co-workers’ knowledge sabotage behavior. There is a relatively strong relationship between co-worker and individual knowledge sabotage which suggests that knowledge sabotage is a form of contagious workplace behavior. Individuals underestimate their negative behavior and traits and/or overestimate those of their fellow co-workers.

Practical implications

Managers should realize that the Dark Triad personality traits could predispose certain individuals to engage in extremely harmful counterproductive knowledge behavior. They need to ensure that individuals with these traits are not hired or are identified during their probation periods. It is recommended that organizations include knowledge sabotage measures in their periodic employee surveys. Organizations should help their employees objectively re-evaluate their own traits and knowledge behavior as well as those of their colleagues to ensure that their reciprocating knowledge behavior is more aligned with the reality in their organization.

Originality/value

This study offers a reliable and valid quantitative survey instrument to measure the presence of knowledge sabotage.

Details

Journal of Knowledge Management, vol. 24 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1367-3270

Keywords

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