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Ostracism Applied to the Workplace

Part of the Palgrave Explorations in Workplace Stigma book series (PAEWS)

Abstract

In this introductory chapter, we describe the early, social psychological roots of workplace ostracism research and the key papers that gave rise to the current body of work on this topic. We explain the various ways in which ostracism can manifest, including general feelings of being ignored or excluded, organizational shunning, out-of-the-loop ostracism, linguistic ostracism, and cyberostracism. Attention is given to the employee behaviors and characteristics that commonly give rise to ostracism by coworkers. We then review briefly the negative impacts of being ostracized on employee well-being, spillover to family life, organizational citizenship behaviors, unethical and counterproductive work behaviors, work performance, and job commitment. We conclude with a description of five key ways in which future research can improve upon the existing literature. These include more diverse outcome variables, greater use of experimentation, expanded operationalizations of ostracism, greater attention to cultural differences in reactions to ostracism, and a stronger focus on actual rather than self-report behaviors.

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Sommer, K.L., Nagel, J.A., Williams, K.D. (2021). Ostracism Applied to the Workplace. In: Liu, C., Ma, J. (eds) Workplace Ostracism. Palgrave Explorations in Workplace Stigma. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-54379-2_1

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