Doll: Individual and Situational Moderators of the Willingness to Engage in a Workplace Romance

Who: Jessica Doll (Committee: Patrick Rosopa (Chair), Cindy Pury, Robin Kowalski, Ned Brainerd)

What: Dissertation defense (Title: Individual and Situational Moderators of the Willingness to Engage in a Workplace Romance).

Abstract: The purpose of the current study was to propose amendments to Pierce, Byrne, and Aguinis’ (1996) model of workplace romance. Specifically, based on prior research and theory, moderators of the relation between the desire to engage in a workplace romance and the willingness to engage in a workplace romance were examined. I also proposed additional consequences of engaging in workplace romances. Data were collected from both student (N = 347) and employee (N =172) samples at a mid-sized southern university. Additional employee data were collected from a small technical college and an on-line professional networking site. Using a 2 × 2 × 3 fractional factorial experimental design, the motive to engage in a workplace romance (i.e., love or job), relationship to the romantic interest (i.e., hierarchical vs. lateral), and the organizational policy regarding workplace romances (i.e., none, moderate, and strict) were manipulated in an online survey. Personality variables and attitudes about workplace romances were also measured. Attitudes about workplace romances, organizational policy, and motives were significant predictors of the willingness to engage in a workplace romance. Conscientiousness was a significant predictor of the willingness to engage in a workplace romance and was mediated by attitudes about workplace romances. Additionally, relationship secrecy was proposed as a predictor of subjective well-being, and projected job satisfaction was proposed as an outcome of engagement in workplace relationships. Relationship secrecy significantly predicted both projected life and job satisfaction. Implications for the workplace are discussed.

Where: 419 Brackett Hall

When: April 11th, 2011 @ 11:00am

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