Psychology Research and Behavior Management (Dec 2021)

Impact of Performance Lower Than Expectations on Work Behaviors: The Moderating Effect of Status Mutability and Mediating Role of Regulatory Focus

  • Kumar N,
  • Hossain MY,
  • Jin Y,
  • Safeer AA,
  • Chen T

Journal volume & issue
Vol. Volume 14
pp. 2257 – 2270


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Nilesh Kumar,1,2 Md Yahin Hossain,2,3 Yanghua Jin,1 Asif Ali Safeer,4 Ting Chen1 1School of Business Administration, Zhejiang Gongshang University, Hangzhou, Zhejiang, People’s Republic of China; 2School of Management, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, Hubei, People’s Republic of China; 3Department of Business Studies, University of Information Technology and Sciences, Dhaka, Bangladesh; 4Business School, Huanggang Normal University, Huanggang, Hubei, People’s Republic of ChinaCorrespondence: Nilesh Kumar Email [email protected]: Drawing on social cognitive theory (SCT), this research aims to test the mediation of promotion focus motivation in between performance lower than expectations and innovative work behavior under the moderation of status hierarchy mutability. Further, low performance may also lead employees to counter-productivity through prevention focus. Thus, this study examines both sides of performance lower than expectations of the employee in the organization.Methodology: The study considered a cross-sectional study and surveyed R&D departments of manufacturing firms located in China. In total, 340 employees in 65 teams participated in the survey. This study conducted a confirmatory factor analysis to test the reliability and validity of data and used hierarchical linear modeling to test the hypotheses via Mplus 7.3.Findings: First, we reveal that employees’ performance lower than expectations is positively linked with promotion focus regulation. Second, the study’s outcomes reveal a positive indirect effect from employees’ higher status mutability in the group toward innovative work behaviour through promotion focus motivation. At last, the study identified that performance lower than expectations has a positive indirect impact on counterproductive behaviour via prevention focus.Practical Implications: This research assists managers to understand the connection of stress between performances lower than expectations and the self-regulated motivation of the employee towards innovative behavior and counterproductive work behavior. Further, it recommends that leaders at different levels should understand that various reference groups inside and outside the organization pressurize employees’ cognition. Therefore, certain steps and policies (eg, sensitive training, annual performance appraisal, feedback) must be taken into consideration to handle such self-regulatory behaviors.Originality: This study is the earliest to examine the performance expectations as an antecedent of innovative work behavior and counterproductive work behavior through regulatory focus.Keywords: counterproductive work behaviour, innovative work behaviour, performance lower than expectations, prevention focus, promotion focus, status hierarchy mutability