Overqualification and Counterproductive Work Behaviors: Examining a Moderated Mediation Model

Journal of Organizational Behavior, Volume 36, Issue 2, pages 250-271, February 2015

22 Pages Posted: 26 Jul 2015 Last revised: 5 Aug 2015

See all articles by Songqi Liu

Songqi Liu

Georgia State University - J. Mack Robinson College of Business

Aleksandra Luksyte

The University of Western Australia

Le Zhou

University of Minnesota - Twin Cities - Carlson School of Management

Junqi Shi

Sun Yat-Sen University (SYSU) - Lingnan (University) College

Mo Wang

University of Florida - Department of Management

Date Written: November 1, 2014

Abstract

The current study examined the effect of employees' perceived overqualification on counterproductive work behaviors (CWBs). Building on person-job fit theory and prior research on such organizational phenomena, we conceptualized overqualification as a type of poor person-job fit. Drawing on the dual-process model, we further suggested that in processing their person-job misfit, overqualified employees might cognitively appraise themselves as less worthy organizational members and experientially feel angry toward the employment situation. We also suggested that to the extent that overqualified people are sensitive to justice, they may react more or less strongly to being overqualified. We tested our predictions using time-lagged data from a sample of 224 workers and their supervisors employed in a large manufacturing company in China. Consistent with our theoretical framework, we found that organization-based self-esteem (OBSE) and anger toward employment situation mediated the positive relationships between perceived overqualification and both self-rated and supervisor-rated CWBs. In addition, justice sensitivity moderated the relationship between perceived overqualification and the mediators (i.e.,‚ÄČOBSE and anger) and the indirect relationship between perceived overqualification and CWB. The theoretical and practical implications of these findings as well as future research directions are discussed.

Keywords: overqualification, counterproductive work behaviors, organization-based self-esteem, anger, justice sensitivity

Suggested Citation

Liu, Songqi and Luksyte, Aleksandra and Zhou, Le and Shi, Junqi and Wang, Mo, Overqualification and Counterproductive Work Behaviors: Examining a Moderated Mediation Model (November 1, 2014). Journal of Organizational Behavior, Volume 36, Issue 2, pages 250-271, February 2015. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2635670

Songqi Liu

Georgia State University - J. Mack Robinson College of Business ( email )

P.O. Box 4050
Atlanta, GA 30303-3083
United States

Aleksandra Luksyte

The University of Western Australia ( email )

35 Stirling Highway
Crawley, Western Australia 6009
Australia

Le Zhou

University of Minnesota - Twin Cities - Carlson School of Management ( email )

19th Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN 55455
United States

Junqi Shi

Sun Yat-Sen University (SYSU) - Lingnan (University) College ( email )

135 Xingang Xi Road
Guangzhou, Guangdong 510275
China

Mo Wang (Contact Author)

University of Florida - Department of Management ( email )

United States

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