I Won't Let You Down ... or Will I? Core Self-Evaluations, Other-Orientation, Anticipated Guilt and Gratitude, and Job Performance

Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, 3620 Locust Walk, Suite 2000 SH/DH, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6370, USA.
Journal of Applied Psychology (Impact Factor: 4.31). 01/2010; 95(1):108-21. DOI: 10.1037/a0017974
Source: PubMed


Although core self-evaluations have been linked to higher job performance, research has shown variability in the strength of this relationship. We propose that high core self-evaluations are more likely to increase job performance for other-oriented employees, who tend to anticipate feelings of guilt and gratitude. We tested these hypotheses across 3 field studies using different operationalizations of both performance and other-orientation (prosocial motivation, agreeableness, and duty). In Study 1, prosocial motivation strengthened the association between core self-evaluations and the performance of professional university fundraisers. In Study 2, agreeableness strengthened the association between core self-evaluations and supervisor ratings of initiative among public service employees. In Study 3, duty strengthened the association between core self-evaluations and the objective productivity of call center employees, and this moderating relationship was mediated by feelings of anticipated guilt and gratitude. We discuss implications for theory and research on personality and job performance.

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Available from: Amy Wrzesniewski
    • "Over the past decade, researchers have started addressing the role of emotion in ethical decision making (Bazerman, Gino, Shu, & Tsay, 2011;Gino & Shea, 2012;Teper, Zhong, & Inzlicht, 2015;Zhong, 2011), including the role of general positive affect (Gaudine & Thorne, 2001), of positive and negative mood (Noval & Stahl, 2015), and of more specific emotional states, such as guilt (Ghorbani, Liao, Cayköylü, & Chand, 2013), empathy (Cohen, 2010), embarrassment (Warren & Smith-Crowe, 2008) and envy (Moran & Schweitzer, 2008). The role of affective forecasts remains underexplored with the exception of studies addressing the role of affective forecasting errors in the anticipation of guilt (Ruedy, Moore, Gino, & Schweitzer, 2013) and the role of anticipated guilt in promoting ethical behavior (e.g.,Ghorbani et al., 2013;Grant & Wrzesniewski, 2010;Yam & Reynolds, 2014). Whereas the latter research refers to affective forecasts in terms of the psychological costs of unethical behavior (Lewicki, 1983), in this investigation, I exclusively examine affective forecasting related to the motivation to engage in unethical and selfish acts. "
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    • "Lazarus and Lazarus (1994) state that gratitude is an emphatic (other oriented) emotion. In a similar vein, Grant and Wrzesniewski (2010) argue anticipated gratitude with regard to other-oriented emotion. Other-oriented indicates concern for the thoughts of other people. "

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