Description: Previous research on workplace bullying primarily focuses on two main actors – the bully and the victim – while neglecting a third actor: the bystander of the bullying. The prevalence of workplace bullying is increasing across organizations, resulting in more employees becoming subjected to the effects of workplace bullying. Furthermore, witnessing coworker-on-coworker bullying is likely to influence the relationships that the bystander has with the two coworkers involved in the bullying episode. Two areas are proposed to investigate their effect on the coworker bystander: coworker interpersonal justice and personal identification with coworkers. Coworker interpersonal justice involves the perceived fairness between coworkers, while personal identification refers to how these bystanders identify with the specific actors of the bullying event. In addition to work-related outcomes, bystanders are affected at a personal level. That is, being exposed to bullying situations causes these bystanders to alter their anxiety levels and their core affect, with core affect being a precursor to moods and emotions. In addition to the aforementioned outcomes of witnessing a coworker bullying incident, there are also contextual aspects which may influence these relationships. Personal-level factors, such as a bystander's empathy and sense of coherence (i.e., coping mechanisms), may influence the effect of witnessing a coworker being bullied. Similarly, the gender of the victim in relation to the gender of the bystander may also play a role. Using affective events theory, I investigate how witnessing coworker bullying in the workplace effects bystanders. This research employs a 2 x 2 experimental design with multi-wave data collection and an in-person lab session to test the proposed hypotheses. AET is operationalized by creating a fictional coworker bullying situation in which observers are either exposed to the bullying situation or not. This research offers several contributions to the management literature as well as to practitioners. First, it ...
Date: May 2017
Creator: Medina, Michele Nicole
Partner: UNT Libraries