Group Mate Absence, Dissimilarity, and Individual Absence: Another Look at 'Monkey See, Monkey Do'
Ian R. Gellatly
University of Alberta - Department of Strategic Management and Organization
February 1, 2012
European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology, Vol. 21, Issue 1, February 2012
University of Alberta School of Business Research Paper No. 2013-445
In this study, we examined whether the alignment of individual and group absence depended on an individual's similarity or dissimilarity with his or her group mates. The study hypotheses were tested with organizational data, involving 1382 employees from 181 work groups. Our criterion was individual absence frequency, observed over a 12-month period. Dissimilarity indices fororganizational tenure and union affiliation were computed from organizational records. We found that the relation between group mate absence and individual absence was moderated by dissimilarity with respect to union affiliation (but not tenure dissimilarity), such that those with low union dissimilarity scores were more likely to align their absence behaviour with that of their group mates.
Keywords: Dissimilarity, Employee absenteeism, Relational demography, Social influence, Workgroup mate absence
Date posted: May 28, 2013