Workplace bullying: individual hostility, poor work environment or both? Exploring competing explanatory models in a single longitudinal study

Malgorzata Gamian-Wilk*, Brita Bjorkelo, Eva Gemzoe Mikkelsen, Premilla D’Cruz, Kamila Madeja-Bien

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Abstrakt

Purpose: A central focus of research and literature on workplace bullying is the importance of explanatory factors such as individual dispositions (i.e., the vulnerability hypothesis) and work environment factors (i.e., the work environment hypothesis). Although several studies address the importance of the two approaches, as well as their individual and combined effects, the unique contribution of each of the competing approaches remain unexplored in a single longitudinal study. Methods: Based on Affective Events Theory, we explore the contribution of work environment and individual hostility in the occurrence of workplace bullying over time, using two-wave survey data, collected with a 6-month time lag among 152 employees from 7 private and public workplaces. Results: Results confirmed that work environment factors predicted later exposure to bullying. Exposure to workplace bullying at T1 was also related to a poor work environment at T2. Results further showed that higher exposure to workplace bullying at T1 and T2 was related to higher levels of almost all aspects of individual hostility over time. Moreover, poor working conditions especially in T1 predicted individual hostility at T2. Conclusion: The present study thus documents that a poor work environment fosters bullying, and when bullying exists in a workplace, this elicits interpersonal hostility. Results points to the importance of addressing, through research and practice, work environment factors as predictors of workplace bullying.

OriginalsprogEngelsk
TidsskriftInternational Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health
Vol/bind95
Udgave nummer10
Sider (fra-til)1955-1969
ISSN0340-0131
DOI
StatusUdgivet - dec. 2022

Bibliografisk note

Funding Information:
This work was funded by MNiSZW to Malgorzata Gamian-Wilk with Grant number SUB/IPsy/2019/10.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022, The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature.

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