Journal of Business and Psychology

, Volume 34, Issue 6, pp 847–863 | Cite as

Share Your Pride: How Expressing Pride in the Self and Others Heightens the Perception of Agentic and Communal Characteristics

  • Lisa RitzenhöferEmail author
  • Prisca Brosi
  • Isabell M. Welpe
Original Paper


We reevaluate the proposition that pride expressions relate positively to ascriptions of agency and negatively to communality by studying self-referential pride and vicarious pride in others. While both signal a positive outcome, they differ in attributing it to one’s own or others’ efforts. Based on these differential attributions, we assume that the asymmetric pattern found for pride pertains to self-referential pride, whereas pride in others relates positively to communal dimensions and could even reverse the negative effect of self-referential pride. We examined expressions of self-referential and vicarious pride in two experiments (N1 = 286, N2 = 309) and a field study (N3 = 210) in peer and leadership contexts. We found pride in the self to relate positively (and independently from expressions of pride in others) to ascribed agency and autocratic leadership for peers, but only to the latter for leaders. For peers, pride in others was found to relate positively with communality and democratic leadership, and could even reverse negative effects of pride in the self. For leaders, the results primarily showed a negative relationship between pride in the self and both communality and democratic leadership. Our results provide first evidence that vicarious pride affects outcomes differently than self-referential pride, and integrate expressers’ power position as a critical moderator. Therein, we contribute to emotion research in outlining boundary conditions for the asymmetrical effects of expressing pride, thus helping individuals to anticipate the effects of self-referential and vicarious pride in peer and leadership contexts.


Pride in the self Pride in others Emotion expression Agency Communality Autocratic leadership Democratic leadership 


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lisa Ritzenhöfer
    • 1
    Email author
  • Prisca Brosi
    • 2
  • Isabell M. Welpe
    • 1
    • 3
  1. 1.TUM School of ManagementTechnical University of MunichMunichGermany
  2. 2.Kühne Logistics University (KLU)HamburgGermany
  3. 3.Bavarian State Institute for Higher Education Research and PlanningMunichGermany

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