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Coworker-targeted leader aggressive humor and observers’ OCB: the mediating roles of observers’ cognitive and affective trust and the moderating role of LMX

Wang, Ying, Hu, Xiaoran ORCID: 0000-0002-3409-846X, Song, Yu and Bai, Yuntao (2024) Coworker-targeted leader aggressive humor and observers’ OCB: the mediating roles of observers’ cognitive and affective trust and the moderating role of LMX. Current Psychology, 43 (19). 17049 - 17064. ISSN 1046-1310

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Identification Number: 10.1007/s12144-024-05646-w

Abstract

The majority of theory and research on aggressive humor has predominantly focused on the perspective of the direct victim, while the third-party viewpoint has received limited attention. Integrating social information processing theory with trust literature, we propose that coworker-targeted leader aggressive humor weakens observers’ organizational citizenship behavior (OCB) by undermining the observer’s cognitive and affective trust in leaders. Furthermore, we suggest that these effects critically depend on the quality of observers’ LMX with leaders. Results from a field study involving 211 leader-observer dyads (Study 1) and a two-wave field study using 285 employees (Study 2) provide support for the proposed model, yielding several new insights. Specifically, the results reveal that witnessing coworker-targeted leader aggressive humor reduces observers’ cognitive and affective trust in leaders, consequently hindering their organizational citizenship behavior (OCB). Furthermore, we find that while high-quality LMX between observers and leaders buffers the negative effect of coworker-targeted leader aggressive humor on observers’ affective trust in leaders, it doesn’t alleviate the negative effect on cognitive trust. Overall, our study extends the literature on aggressive humor and provides meaningful implications for practitioners.

Item Type: Article
Official URL: https://link.springer.com/journal/12144
Additional Information: © 2024, The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature.
Divisions: Management
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor > HD28 Management. Industrial Management
Date Deposited: 09 Feb 2024 00:13
Last Modified: 04 Jul 2024 03:12
URI: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/121986

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