Sec/390 Organizational Behavior Research Paper


Alnoor Ebrahim | Julie Battilana | Johanna Mair

© 2014 Elsevier Ltd. We examine the challenges of governance facing organizations that pursue a social mission through the use of market mechanisms. These hybrid organizations, often referred to as social enterprises, combine aspects of both charity and business at their core. In this paper we distinguish between two ideal types of such hybrids, differentiated and integrated, and we conceptualize two key challenges of governance they face: accountability for dual performance objectives and accountability to multiple principal stakeholders. We revisit the potential and limitations of recently introduced legal forms to address these challenges. We then theorize about the importance of organizational governance and the role of governing boards in particular, in prioritizing and aligning potentially conflicting objectives and interests in order to avoid mission drift and to maintain organizational hybridity in social enterprises. Finally, we discuss future research directions and the implications of this work for rethinking traditional categories of organizations, namely business and charity.


Celia Moore | Francesca Gino

This chapter focuses on the social nature of morality. Using the metaphor of the moral compass to describe individuals' inner sense of right and wrong, we offer a framework that identifies social reasons why our moral compasses can come under others' control, leading even good people to cross ethical boundaries. Departing from prior work on how individuals' cognitive limitations explain unethical behavior, we focus on socio-psychological processes that facilitate moral neglect, moral justification, and immoral action, all of which undermine moral behavior. In addition, we describe organizational factors that exacerbate the detrimental effects of each facilitator. We conclude by advising organizational scholars to take a more integrative approach to developing and evaluating theory about unethical behavior and by suggesting further study of interventions that might disempower these social triggers of unethical behavior, allowing us to regain control of our moral compasses. A solitary organism has no need for moral rules, nor does a creature living among others without mutual dependency. (Høgh-Oleson, 2010, p. 3). © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.


Taya R. Cohen | Lily Morse

© 2014 Elsevier Ltd. Moral character can be conceptualized as an individual's disposition to think, feel, and behave in an ethical versus unethical manner, or as the subset of individual differences relevant to morality. This essay provides an organizing framework for understanding moral character and its relationship to ethical and unethical work behaviors. We present a tripartite model for understanding moral character, with the idea that there are motivational, ability, and identity elements. The motivational element is consideration of others - referring to a disposition toward considering the needs and interests of others, and how one's own actions affect other people. The ability element is self-regulation - referring to a disposition toward regulating one's behavior effectively, specifically with reference to behaviors that have positive short-term consequences but negative long-term consequences for oneself or others. The identity element is moral identity-referring to a disposition toward valuing morality and wanting to view oneself as a moral person. After unpacking what moral character is, we turn our attention to what moral character does, with a focus on how it influences unethical behavior, situation selection, and situation creation. Our research indicates that the impact of moral character on work outcomes is significant and consequential, with important implications for research and practice in organizational behavior.


Thomas Donaldson | James P. Walsh

© 2015 The Authors. What is the purpose of business? While most agree that business minimally involves the creation of value, a blurred double image of value haunts our discussion of purpose. The image of what counts as value for a single firm is laid atop an image of what counts as value for business in general. These two images cannot match. Indeed, the resulting conceptual blurriness is a classic example of a composition fallacy. We should never mistake the properties of a part for the properties of the whole. A theory of the firm is ill equipped to handle the many expectations we hold for business practice. As such, we seek to establish the beginnings of a theory of business, one that is both empirical and normative. Offering four central propositions about the purpose, accountability, control and success of business, we close with a consideration of several important theoretical issues and practical opportunities that await us in the years ahead.


Neil Fligstein

In the literature on organizations, there are two very different views of social change. One emphasizes piecemeal change and actor learning. The other views change as more revolutionary resulting in entirely novel forms of organizations. On the surface, these two conceptions of social change seem incompatible. But, I argue that by situating organizations in field analysis, we can make sense about the conditions under which both can occur. This paper offers a framework for understanding strategic action in organizational fields. Embedded in this framework is the idea that these different theories of change operate under quite different structural conditions of fields. The emergence or transformation of a field implies radical change precisely because all elements of the structuring of the field are in flux. If one is observing an already existing field, then the dynamics of interaction are likely to be quite different. Actors in existing fields will work to maintain their position in the field. They will engage in strategic action to make changes in response to what others are doing in the field. Thus, in a stable field where the game for position is ongoing, we expect change to be more incremental, more imitative, and often, in reaction to the moves of others. I end by presenting an example of stability and suggesting a research agenda. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.


Michel Anteby | Caitlin Anderson

© 2014 Elsevier Ltd. Over the past generation, sexual minorities-particularly lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) persons-have gained increased visibility in the public arena. Yet organizational research has lagged behind in recognizing and studying this category of organizational members. This article offers a critical review of this growing body of research. More specifically, we identify and discuss four dominant scholarly frames that have informed LGBT organizational research from the late nineteenth century to date. The frames include a "medical abnormality," "deviant social role," "collective identity," and "social distinctiveness" view of sexual minorities. We argue that these frames have profoundly shaped the scope and range of organizational scholarship devoted to sexual minorities by showing that scholars using such contrasted frames have been drawn to very different research questions with respect to sexual minorities. We document and discuss the main and contrasted questions asked within each of these frames and show how they have both enabled and constrained LGBT organizational research. We conclude by calling for more attention to the frames organizational scholars adopt when studying sexual minorities, but also for more research on both minority and majority sexual orientations in organizations.


Teresa M. Amabile | Michael G. Pratt

© 2016 Elsevier Ltd Leveraging insights gained through a burgeoning research literature over the past 28 years, this paper presents a significant revision of the model of creativity and innovation in organizations published in Research in Organizational Behavior in 1988. This update focuses primarily on the individual-level psychological processes implicated in creativity that have been illuminated by recent research, and highlights organizational work environment influences on those processes. We revisit basic assumptions underlying the 1988 model, modify certain components and causal connections, and introduce four new constructs into the model: (1) a sense of progress in creative idea development; (2) the meaningfulness of the work to those carrying it out; (3) affect; and (4) synergistic extrinsic motivation. Throughout, we propose ways in which the components underlying individual and team creativity can both influence and be influenced by organizational factors crucial to innovation.


Leigh Plunkett Tost

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. Recent research in social psychology has examined how psychological power affects organizational behaviors. Given that power in organizations is generally viewed as a structural construct, I examine the links between structural and psychological power and explore how their interrelationships affect organizational behavior. I argue that psychological power takes two forms: the (nonconscious) cognitive network for power and the conscious sense of power. Based on this view, I identify two causal pathways that link psychological power and structural power in predicting organizational behavior. First, the sense of power is likely to induce a sense of responsibility among (but not exclusively among) structural powerholders, which in turn leads structural powerholders to be more responsive to the views and needs of others. Second, the sense of power, when brought into conscious awareness, activates a non-conscious association between power and agentic behaviors, which in turn leads structural powerholders to enact agentic behaviors. I discuss the ways in which these predictions diverge from previous theorizing, and I address methodological challenges in examining the relationship between structural and psychological power. In doing so, I suggest that certain features of the predominant methodological approaches to studying psychological power may have induced a bias in the empirical findings that obscures the crucial link between power and responsibility.


Ting Zhang | Francesca Gino | Max H. Bazerman

© 2014 Elsevier Ltd. Ethics research developed partly in response to calls from organizations to understand and solve unethical behavior. We examine two approaches to mitigating unethical behavior: (1) values-oriented approaches that broadly appeal to individuals' preferences to be more moral, and (2) structure-oriented approaches that redesign specific incentives, tasks, and decisions to reduce temptations to cheat in the environment. This paper explores how these approaches can change behavior. We argue that integrating both approaches while avoiding incompatible strategies can reduce the risk of adverse effects that arise from taking a single approach and leverage the strengths of both approaches.


Joel Brockner | Batia M. Wiesenfeld | Phyllis A. Siegel | D. Ramona Bobocel | Zhi Liu

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. This chapter calls attention to a paradigmatic shift in the organizational justice literature, in which fairness serves as the dependent rather than independent variable. Drawing on two taxonomic dimensions, we structure approaches to studying fairness as a consequence rather than as a cause. One dimension refers to the focal party whose reactions are being examined (the actor, the recipient, and the observer) whereas the other consists of the nature of the reaction itself (behavior, desire, and perception). We sample selectively from the nine cells emanating from the 3. ×. 3 classification scheme, emphasizing conceptual and empirical works that advance our understanding of fairness or connect fairness with other literatures in organizational and social psychology, such as ethics, social hierarchy, trust, self-handicapping, and construal level theory. Thus, we illustrate how the study of fairness as a dependent variable enriches not only theory and research in organizational justice, but also how it may contribute to other literatures. Additionally, we consider some of the practical implications and future research possibilities related to studying fairness as a dependent variable.


Gillian Ku | Cynthia S. Wang | Adam D. Galinsky

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. Successful managers and leaders need to effectively navigate their organizational worlds, from motivating customers and employees to managing diversity to preventing and resolving conflicts. Perspective-taking is a psychological process that is particularly relevant to each of these activities. The current review critically examines perspective-taking research conducted by both management scholars and social psychologists and specifies perspective-taking's antecedents, consequences, mechanisms, and moderators, as well as identifies theoretical and/or empirical shortfalls. Our summary of the current state of perspective-taking research offers three important contributions. First, we offer a new definition of perspective-taking: the active cognitive process of imagining the world from another's vantage point or imagining oneself in another's shoes to understand their visual viewpoint, thoughts, motivations, intentions, and/or emotions. Second, we highlight that although perspective-taking has many positive benefits for managers and leaders, it also carries with it the potential for perverse effects. Third, we argue that previous theoretical lenses to understand perspective-taking's goal are insufficient in light of all the available evidence. Instead, we offer a new theoretical proposition to capture the full range of perspective-taking's positive and negative effects: perspective-taking helps individuals effectively navigate a world filled with mixed-motive social interactions. Our mixed-motive model of perspective-taking not only captures the current findings but also offers new directions for future research.


Joel A.C. Baum | Anita M. McGahan

We investigate the interplay between institutional structures and agency in the emergence of the private military and security industry (PMSI). Despite its controversial nature, the PMSI has achieved sufficient legitimacy since the end of the Cold War to account at times for the majority of military personnel deployed in Afghanistan and Iraq. We find both structure and agency central to the PMSI's development. The analysis points first to the central roles played by actors with expertise, reputation, and credibility based in sovereign structures, and, second, to structural shifts that reconfigured the military field in ways that both enabled and constrained agency. Various actors lent credibili ty to new activities that were integrated with and substitutes for previously legitimated approaches by using these openings to discredit prevailing institutional logics and to construct bridges between old and new institutions. However, it is the interplay of structure and agency that affords the clearest view of the expansion of the modern PMSI and the forces fostering and impeding its legitimacy. Our analysis reflects on a central question in organization theory: Where do new industries come from, and what entrepreneurial strategies are employed to establish organizational legitimacy under structural constraints? © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.


Devon Proudfoot | Aaron C. Kay

© 2014 Elsevier Ltd. In this chapter, we put forth the premise that people's motivated tendency to justify and defend their external systems has important, and largely unexplored, implications for the field of organizational behavior. Drawing on recent theoretical and empirical work emerging from System Justification Theory (Jost & Banaji, 1994), we propose that people's desire to view prevailing structural arrangements in a positive light may uniquely contribute to our understanding of the psychology of people in organizational settings. We begin by specifically highlighting System Justification Theory's implications for: organizational change, employee citizenship behaviors, and integration of a diverse workforce. We then review empirical work on the situations in which people's system-justification motive is likely to be particularly pronounced and discuss how these situations may manifest in organizational contexts. Following this, we describe several streams of research on the consequences of the system-justification motive, with a focus on the implications of these findings for organizational members' perceptions, attitudes, and behaviors in the workplace.


L. Taylor Phillips | Max Weisbuch | Nalini Ambady

© 2014 Elsevier Ltd. An enormous amount of research on person perception exists. This literature documents how people form impressions of one another and how these impressions influence behavior. However, this literature surprisingly has not been extended to people perception-how people visually perceive and judge groups (e.g., teams, classrooms, boards, crowds) rather than individuals. We propose a model of people perception processes, including three stages of Selection, Extraction, and Application (the SEA model). We integrate this model with literature from organizational, social, cognitive, and visual sciences to describe the important role of people perception in organizational and social behavior. We focus our discussion on organizational and social phenomena such as group tone, group hierarchy, and group evaluation.


Juliana Schroeder | Ayelet Fishbach

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. To achieve goals, individuals and organizations must understand how to effectively motivate themselves and others. We review three broad strategies that people employ to increase motivation: giving feedback, setting goal targets, and applying incentives. Although each of these strategies can effectively motivate action under certain circumstances and among certain people, they can also result in unintended consequences: not helping or even hurting motivation. For example, employers may give positive feedback that leads employees to relax their effort or negative feedback that undermines employees' commitment, organizations may set goals that are overly ambitious and consequently reduce motivation, and certain incentives might appear attractive before pursuing an action but uncertain incentives better motivate action during goal pursuit. By identifying when and how these common motivational strategies work versus fail, we are able to prescribe a specific set of guidelines that will help people understand how to motivate themselves and others.


Roy Suddaby | Thierry Viale | Yves Gendron

© 2016 Elsevier Ltd We examine the micro-foundations of field-level organizational change by analyzing the role of social skill and social position in individuals. Our core argument is that differences in an individual's social skill and in their social position produce different degrees of reflexivity or awareness of existing social arrangements. We demonstrate how the interaction of social skill and social position produce distinct types or categories of reflexivity, each of which contributes to institutional stability or change.


Michael S. North | Susan T. Fiske

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. The workforce is rapidly aging. Already at record highs, labor force participation rates of both over-55 and over-65 age segments are expected to nearly double in the immediate future. The current chapter describes how these sweeping demographic changes necessitate both the unprecedented utilization of older workers and intergenerational collaboration, but also present the danger of heightened generational tension. We describe the specific risk factors for such tensions, highlighting the presence of generational boundaries at multiple levels: (a) individual, (b) interpersonal, (c) institutional, and (d) international. Drawing from our own work and relevant management literature, we then identify three broad domains within which intergenerational tensions are particularly salient at each of these levels: active Succession tensions over enviable resources and influence (e.g., employment), passive Consumption tensions over shared asset usage (e.g., healthcare) and symbolic Identity tensions over figurative space (e.g., cultural fit) (SCI). We conclude with suggestions for potential interventions, and major open areas for future organizational research, both of which should focus on how to maximize the utility of unprecedented intergenerational collaboration.


Jirs Meuris | Carrie R. Leana

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. Due to current economic circumstances (e.g., stagnating wages, increasing material aspirations, mounting student debt), an increasing number of employees are prone to experiencing economic scarcity, defined here as the perception that one has fewer financial resources than one's needs require. In this paper, we focus primarily on an under-studied population in the organizational sciences: The working poor-employees who hold jobs but do not earn enough to sustain a reasonable standard of living for themselves and their dependents. Taking into account recent research suggesting that scarcity can have profound psychological consequences, we argue that organizations have a vested interest in reducing feelings of financial deprivation among its employees because the psychology of scarcity has the potential to spill over into organizational functioning. Furthermore, we assert that most organizations' approaches to managing low-wage work are not only ineffective at reducing the spillover effects of scarcity on organizational outcomes, but also increase their endurance because they do not account for the behavioral consequences of financial deprivation. As such, we present more sustainable initiatives through which organizations can reduce scarcity among its employees. Finally, we discuss ways in which organizational researchers can become more involved in relevant public policy debates.


Henrich R. Greve | Hayagreeva Rao

© 2014 Elsevier Ltd. An important source of organizational variation in communities is institutional legacies: institutions that persist and affect the community over long periods of time. Institutional legacies have received attention in the past, but recently there has been increased interest in their origins and effects. We examine three carriers of institutional legacies-legal structures, voluntary organizations, and intra-community relations-and show some work on each of these carriers. We discuss how research on institutional legacies presents a particular challenge in causal identification, but we also offer potentially viable solutions to this challenge. Finally, we outline extensions of research on institutional legacies through work that documents how the interrelationships between community organizations and businesses are shaped by institutional legacies and in turn contribute to their evolution.


James N. Baron

Economists have argued that employers sometimes pay above-market premiums (efficiency wages) in order to attract, motivate, and/or retain valued personnel. Drawing on recent work examining reciprocity and gift exchange, this paper proposes the notion of "empathy wages," in which the effect of the premium paid depends on the extent to which it elicits gratitude from recipients. We argue that a particular gift (monetary or otherwise) offered by an employer is likely to elicit more gratitude among "non-stars": workers who are relatively disadvantaged and in the lower part of the performance distribution. In contrast to "stars," "non-stars" are likely to compare the treatment they receive to the inferior opportunities or treatment they (might) have received outside of their present employment situation. Star workers, in contrast, are likely to believe that they are worth whatever they can command. The economic viability of such "empathy wages" thus depends on how much star versus non-star workers vary in gratitude, relative to how they differ in output and compensation. We explore a variety of data bearing on how much stars differ from non-stars in their respective output and earnings (in star contexts such as professional sports and real estate sales). We then review or reanalyze some prior studies on gift exchange, documenting that those who are relatively disadvantaged and/or low performers do appear more grateful (or inclined to reciprocate gifts) than stars. Indeed, the magnitude of the difference is sufficiently large that it could offset quite marked differences in productivity or quite small differences in compensation (both of which would make stars relatively more attractive to employers). We suggest some conditions under which gratitude-based employment systems are more likely to flourish in real-world settings, as well as some fruitful lines for future research on these topics. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.


Michael W. Morris | Krishna Savani | Shira Mor | Jaee Cho

© 2014 Elsevier Ltd. Learning requires acquiring and using knowledge. How do individuals acquire knowledge of another culture? How do they use this knowledge in order to operate proficiently in a new cultural setting? What kinds of training would foster intercultural learning? These questions have been addressed in many literatures of applied and basic research, featuring disparate concepts, methods and measures. In this paper, we review the insights from these different literatures. We note parallels among findings of survey research on immigrants, expatriate managers, and exchange students. We also draw on experiment-based research on learning to propose the cognitive processes involved in intercultural learning. In the first section, we focus on acquiring cultural knowledge, reviewing longstanding literatures on immigrant acculturation and expatriate adjustment investigating antecedents of intercultural adjustment and performance. In the second section, we focus on displaying proficiency, examining how newcomers to a cultural setting deploy their knowledge of it in order to adjust their behavior and judgments. We draw upon findings about individual differences and situational conditions that predict performance to suggest training for optimal use of cultural knowledge by adapting behaviors and judgments according to situational factors.

all branches of the services. Specifically, data were collected on the relationship between performance on selected military tasks and the mental category classification of enlistees as measured by the Armed Forces Qualification Test, which places recruits into mental categories ranging from Category I (high) to Category V (low). Project A, conducted by the Army, also developed a database linking mental category to job performance (Campbell and Zook, 1991).

Two other studies, one conducted on M-60 tankers and the other on M-1 tankers (Scribner et al., 1986; Wallace, 1982), demonstrated a reduction in the number of target hits in a gunnery exercise as mental category declined. For the M-60 the reduction was from 108 hits for Category I to 61 for Category IV; for the M-1 it was from 102 hits for Category I to 86 for Category IV. The smaller decrement shown for the M-I tankers was attributed to the increased automation in this tank. Data such as these could be used to introduce variability into models of human performance.

Level and Type of Expertise and Cognitive Abilities

Rather than discussing education, training, and level and type of experience as internal behavior moderators, we focus here on level and type of expertise (which should be a function of those factors). According to Van Nostrand (1986), it appears that if a task is within the physical capability of the soldier, the cognitive aspects of the task will display greater variation in performance than will physical aspects that are frequently practiced. This conclusion was supported by testing the use of human data in the combined arms task force effectiveness model (CASTFOREM) (Miller, 1985).

As noted by Hudlicka (1997), recent research has identified a number of differences among individuals in terms of level of expertise, cognitive abilities (specifically the ability to perform mental "what-if" simulations), the ability to visualize situations from multiple perspectives, the ability to abstract relevant information, and preferred style of information presentation—textual or visual, and abstract or concrete (Hammond et al., 1987; Deckert et al., 1994; Badre, 1978). The Meyers-Briggs Inventory (MBI) has been used to measure individual differences on the cognitive style scale. The validity of such scores for characterizing students has been problematic (Bjork and Druckman, 1991). However, better success has been achieved when adult decision makers have been tested (Richards and Giminez, 1994) and their cognitive style scores have been correlated with performance.

Studies of tactical planning and command decision making identify features that characterize expert performance as distinguished from the performance of novice tactical planners (Fallesen and Michel, 1991; Lussier et al., 1992; Tolcott et al., 1989). According to these studies, experts have better situation awareness than novices in that they are aware of uncertain assumptions, make better use of available information, actively seek confirming and disconfirming evidence, and

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