Abusive Supervisors Lead to Organizational Deviance!
How organizational commitment is involved.Employees are said to be committed to an organization when they have a sense of liking for and loyalty to their organization. Committed employees tend to behave in ways that are in the best interest of the organization, and frown upon activities detrimental to the organization’s success. Victims of abusive supervision are less likely to be committed to the organization, leading to a greater likelihood for committing acts of organizational deviance. They may hold the organization responsible for allowing their supervisor to behave in such a manner, believing that the organization does not care about its employees’ well-being.
How organizational norms are involved.The informal rules employees have for each other’s behavior have a big effect on the likelihood of deviance committed by victims of abusive supervision. Employees look to each other for guidance in terms of what is acceptable, and the more employees there are committing deviant acts, the more acceptable that kind of behavior appears.
Pulling it all together.In instances of abusive supervision where an employee has a low level of commitment to the organization, and coworker norms indicate approval of deviance, deviant behaviors are likely.
What can organizations do to combat deviance?Some techniques for combating abusive supervision and organizational deviance include:
- Discourage abusive supervision from the start.
- Demonstrate that employees are cared about.
- Discourage the development of norms approving of organizational deviance.
DeGarmo GroupThis was a summary of the research and practice implications from: Tepper, B.J., Henle, C.A., Lambert, L.S., Giacalone, R.A., & Duffy, M.K. (2008). Abusive supervision and subordinates; organizational deviance. Journal of Applied Psychology, 93 (4), 721-732.