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Perceived exploitative employee-organisation relationships: a multi-study investigation of a new construct

Livne-Ofer, Ephrat (2015) Perceived exploitative employee-organisation relationships: a multi-study investigation of a new construct. PhD thesis, The London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE).

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Abstract

The employee-organisation relationship (EOR) has received considerable attention in the organisational behaviour literature. This line of research has heavily emphasised positive relationships, or has examined negative events within an overall positive or neutral relationship. Influenced by the tenets of social exchange theory (Blau, 1964) and the norm of reciprocity (Gouldner, 1960), this strand of research assumes that positive and negative relationships are mirror opposites, rather than discrete forms of interaction. In an attempt to expand negative EOR research, this thesis focuses on exploitation, which has been under-researched in the organisational behaviour literature. This thesis presents a multi-study investigation of a new construct termed perceived exploitative employee-organisation relationships (PERs), employing five independent samples. First, a new measure was developed and evaluated using four samples. PERs were found to be distinct from related constructs, explaining additional variance in negative emotions above and beyond other established constructs. The new scale was then used to examine a hypothesised model of the antecedents and outcomes of such exploitative relationships in a longitudinal study of medical doctors in training. Findings indicate that an effort-reward imbalance which favours the organisation is a pre-condition for the development of PERs, supporting the distributive nature of this phenomenon. Contrary to expectations, however, abusive supervision was not found to predict exploitation perceptions among employees. PERs predicted several attitudinal and behavioural outcomes, and this relationship was partially mediated by the emotions of anger, hostility, shame and guilt. The findings appear to support a thesis of negative asymmetric relationships viewing negative and positive relationships as discrete phenomena that develop differently and have divergent impact on outcomes. The contributions and implications of this thesis as well as suggestions for future research are discussed.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information: © 2015 Ephrat Livne-Ofer
Library of Congress subject classification: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor > HD28 Management. Industrial Management
Sets: Departments > Management
Supervisor: Coyle-Shapiro, Jacqueline
URI: http://etheses.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/3194

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