POLITICAL DISSIMILARITY EFFECTS AT WORK DURING U.S. ELECTIONS: A DYNAMIC PERSPECTIVE

Max Reinwald, Rouven Kanitz, Julia Backmann, Peter Bamberger, Martin Hoegl

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

Abstract

Dissimilarity research has paid little attention to the consequences of political belief differences in the workplace. This oversight seems surprising, given the polarized political landscapes in many Western societies that may significantly alter organizational behavior. During the 2020 United States presidential election, we conducted an experience sampling study on 147 employees across ten consecutive workdays. We examined the relationships between political dissimilarity and trajectories of experienced interpersonal conflict at work using a discontinuous growth curve modeling approach. The findings revealed that an individual’s perceived political dissimilarity had no significant impact on interpersonal conflict before the election day. However, the effect became significant on the election day, and remained present for six days of the observed post-election period. Moreover, post hoc analysis revealed that interpersonal conflict harmed next-day work engagement only when leaders were not perceived as collaborative in their conflict response. This indicates ways of mitigating the negative consequences of politics-induced conflict. Taken together, our study reveals political identity as a critical but under-explored dimension of workplace dissimilarity that becomes salient with political macro events. We also demonstrate spillover effects of political macro events on organizational behavior and advance dissimilarity research from a multilevel-dynamic perspective.

Original languageEnglish
JournalAcademy of Management Annual Meeting Proceedings
Volume2022
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 2022
Event82nd Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management, AOM 2022 - Seattle, United States
Duration: 5 Aug 20229 Aug 2022

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Management Information Systems
  • Management of Technology and Innovation
  • Industrial relations

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