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Who is proactive and why? Unpacking individual differences in employee proactivity

Wu, Chia-huei, Parker, Sharon K. and Bindl, Uta K. (2013) Who is proactive and why? Unpacking individual differences in employee proactivity. In: Bakker, Arnold B., (ed.) Advances in Positive Organizational Psychology. Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 261-280. ISBN 9781780520001

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Scholars have argued that different forms of proactive behaviors (e.g., career initiative, feedback seeking, and taking charge) all involve employees’ self-initiated and future-focused efforts to bring about change in a situation (Parker et al., 2006). There are at least three important elements that define proactivity: future-focus, change-orientation, and self-initiation (Frese & Fay, 2001; Parker et al., 2006). First, proactive behavior is future-focused, which means that this action is targeted at anticipated problems or at opportunities with a long-term focus. Second, proactive behavior is change-oriented, involving not just reacting to a situation but being prepared to change that situation in order to bring about a different future. Third, and underpinning the prior two elements, proactive behavior is self-initiated, which means that employees initiate a proactive goal without being told to, or without requiring explicit instructions from supervisors. Accordingly, proactivity has also been conceived of as a process in which employees generate and implement, under their own direction, a proactive goal to bring about a different future (Bindl, Parker, Totterdell, & Hagger-Johnson, 2012; Frese & Fay, 2001; Grant & Ashford, 2008).

Item Type: Book Section
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2013 Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Library of Congress subject classification: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
Sets: Departments > Management
Date Deposited: 06 Sep 2013 12:29

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