Leader unethical pro-organizational behavior and employee unethical conduct: Social learning of moral disengagement as a behavioral principle2020-09-10 08:56

Speaker:  Mingyun Huai , Assistant Professor,Tongji University

Time: 12:00-13:15, Sep. 30th, 2020 Wednesday

Venue:Tongji Building Block A Room 901


Unethical behavior in organizations has attracted much attention among researchers, yet we know little about when and why unethical behavior conducted by leaders that is intended to benefit the organization—or leader unethical pro-organizational behavior (UPB)—might translate into employee unethical behavior. Drawing on a social learning of principle perspective, which proposes that people can learn the principles that govern observed behaviors, we propose that employees, especially those with a high power distance orientation, can abstract and learn a moral disengagement behavioral principle by observing leader UPB. This learned moral disengagement behavioral principle then enables them to engage in unethical behaviors that may be intended to benefit or harm their organizations. In two multi-wave field studies with data collected from real estate agents, we found overall support for our theoretical model but the moderating effect of power distance orientation.

Speaker’s Bio:


Dr. Mingyun Huai is an assistant professor in Advanced Research Institute of Business at Tongji University. She obtained her PhD degree in management from Hong Kong University of Science & Technology in 2018 and joined Tongji University as an assistant professor after graduation. Her research interest centers on leader-member interactions, such as abusive supervision, LMX, and subordinates’ social learning from leaders’ behaviors. Her work has been published in Leadership Quarterly, Small Group Research, as well as Academy of Management Conference Proceedings.