Self-serving bias suggests that people tend to attribute success to internal factors and attribute failure to external factors (Bradley, J Pers Soc Psychol 36:56–71,1978; Miller and Ross, Psychol Bull 82:213–225,1975). However, the results of the attribution of failure are not always consistent. Some studies have found that people attribute failure to external factors (Snyder, Stephan, & Rosenfileld, 1976) and others suggest that people attribute failure to internal factors (Ross et al., J Pers Soc Psychol 29:609–618,1974). I tested self-serving bias in two different contexts in mainland China: in one, test results were public (students had access to each other’s test results) and in the other, test results were private (students only had access to his/her own results). When a context triggers individuals to compare themselves to others, individuals may alter their attribution of failure in order to preserve their self-image and selfesteem. Data were analyzed by repeated measure ANOVA, and the results show that in a public context people tend to attribute failure more to external factors than to themselves. Also, results suggest that people attribute failure less to themselves in a public context than in a private context.
Informed by implicit leadership theories, this study investigates contemporary Chinese employees’ preferences for paternalistic leadership (including three components: moral leadership, benevolent leadership and authoritarian leadership) and transformational leadership. It further examines the relationship between power distance orientation, core self-evaluation (CSE) and leadership preferences. The study finds that contemporary Chinese employees most prefer moral leadership, but are also highly receptive to transformational leadership. They prefer authoritarian leadership least. Moreover, preferences for authoritarian leadership are predicated on followers’ power distance orientation. However, the opposite is true for moral leadership. CSE is positively related to followers’ preference for authoritarian leadership, benevolent leadership and transformational leadership, but not except for moral leadership. A positive interaction effect is found between power distance orientation and CSE with regard to authoritarian leadership preference. The theoretical and practical implications of the findings are discussed.
High-quality leader-member exchange (LMX) is commonly seen as beneficial to employees. However, this is not always the case in the eyes of other members of the same team. Based on social comparison theory, we propose that members who have high-quality LMX relationships with team leaders might face workplace ostracism through being envied by other members of the same team. Further, we hypothesize that this indirect influence is mitigated by the high-quality LMX member’s agreeableness. Based on data from 196 employees, we found that though ostensibly LMX quality directly led to less workplace ostracism, it had a positive effect on workplace ostracism through being envied by other team members, and agreeableness buffered this indirect positive effect. Theoretical and managerial implications are discussed.
Drawing from a social capital perspective, this study examines the psychological mechanism and boundary conditions of the relationship between individuals’childhood economic status (CES) and later income. Specifically, we tested the mediating role of networking ability and the moderating role of encouragement of participation in this relationship. With a sample of 3635 employees in China and the use of multistage stratified sampling, the results indicate that networking ability mediates the CES and later income relationship. Moreover, encouragement of participation acts as a necessary condition in the relationship between networking ability and later income. Specifically, when encouragement of participation was high, increased networking ability was associated with increased later income. When encouragement of participation was low, the positive relationship between employees’ networking ability and later income was no longer significant. Finally, the indirect effect of CES on later income mediated by networking ability was stronger for organizations with a higher level of encouragement of participation. Findings and future directions in the theory and practice of career development are discussed.
This study aims to examine the relationship between authentic leadership and employee proactive behavior. Based on self-determination theory, we argue that such a relationship is sequentially mediated by psychological empowerment and core self-evaluations. In addition, political skill plays a moderating role in the third stage. These hypotheses are validated by a sample of 65 leaders and 275 subordinates from two private enterprises in mainland China. Results show that authentic leadership (Time 1) influences employees’ proactive behavior (Time 3) through the psychological empowerment (Time 1) and core self-evaluations of employees (Time 2), and the relationship between core self-evaluations and proactive behavior is positively moderated by employees’ political skill. In addition, bootstrapping results also verify the moderating role played by employees’ political skill in the indirect relationship between authentic leadership and proactive behavior through core self-evaluations. Theoretical and managerial implications are further discussed in the light of these findings.