Journal of Business Ethics 148 (4):879-891 (2018)

We used social network analysis to examine a theoretical model exploring why, and under what circumstances, the perpetrators’ ostracizing behaviors are accurately perceived by the target employees. In turn, these perceptions of ostracism lead to the target employees’ counterproductive work behaviors. Adopting perspectives from both perpetrators and targets, we directly measured the ostracizing behaviors by all potential perpetrators and perceived workplace ostracism by target employees. We integrate Social information processing theory and conservation of resource theory to propose a moderated mediation model, and found that employees who have a high level of need to belong are more likely to capture coworkers’ ostracizing behaviors, and those with low political skill are more likely to engage in counterproductive work behavior as their reaction to perceived workplace ostracism. Theoretical and practical implications are discussed.
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DOI 10.1007/s10551-015-2912-x
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