Regulatory focus and work-related outcomes: a review and meta-analysis

Lanaj, Klodiana, Chang, Chu-Hsiang (Daisy) and Johnson, Russell E. 2012, Regulatory focus and work-related outcomes: a review and meta-analysis, Psychological bulletin, vol. 138, no. 5, pp. 998-1034, doi: 10.1037/a0027723.

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Title Regulatory focus and work-related outcomes: a review and meta-analysis
Author(s) Lanaj, Klodiana
Chang, Chu-Hsiang (Daisy)
Johnson, Russell E.
Journal name Psychological bulletin
Volume number 138
Issue number 5
Start page 998
End page 1034
Total pages 37
Publisher American Psychological Association
Place of publication Washington, D.C.
Publication date 2012
ISSN 0033-2909
Keyword(s) regulatory focus
job performance
job attitudes
Summary Regulatory focus theory (Higgins, 1997) has received growing attention in organizational psychology,necessitating a quantitative review that synthesizes its effects on important criteria. In addition, there isneed for theoretical integration of regulatory focus theory with personality research. Theoretical integrationis particularly relevant, since personality traits and dispositions are distal factors that are unlikelyto have direct effects on work behaviors, yet they may have indirect effects via regulatory focus. Thecurrent meta-analysis introduces an integrative framework in which the effects of personality on workbehaviors are best understood when considered in conjunction with more proximal motivational processessuch as regulatory focus. Using a distal–proximal approach, we identify personality antecedentsand work-related consequences of regulatory foci in a framework that considers both general andwork-specific regulatory foci as proximal motivational processes. We present meta-analytic results forrelations of regulatory focus with its antecedents (approach and avoid temperaments, conscientiousness,openness to experience, agreeableness, self-esteem, and self-efficacy) and its consequences (workbehaviors and attitudes). In addition to estimates of bivariate relationships, we support a meta-analyticpath model in which distal personality traits relate to work behaviors via the mediating effects of generaland work-specific regulatory focus. Results from tests of incremental and relative validity indicated thatregulatory foci predict unique variance in work behaviors after controlling for established personality,motivation, and attitudinal predictors. Consistent with regulatory focus theory and our integrativetheoretical framework, regulatory focus has meaningful relations with work outcomes and is notredundant with other individual difference variables.
Language eng
DOI 10.1037/a0027723
Field of Research 150310 Organisation and Management Theory
1701 Psychology
1702 Cognitive Science
1505 Marketing
Socio Economic Objective 910402 Management
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2012, American Psychological Association
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Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Department of Management
2018 ERA Submission
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