When saying sorry may not help: Transgressor power moderates the effect of an apology on forgiveness in the workplace

Zheng, X, Van Dijke, M ORCID: 0000-0001-9974-5050, Leunissen, JM ORCID: 0000-0002-1639-3174, Giurge, LM and De Cremer, D, 2016. When saying sorry may not help: Transgressor power moderates the effect of an apology on forgiveness in the workplace. Human Relations, 69 (6), pp. 1387-1418. ISSN 0018-7267

[img]
Preview
Text
PubSub6421_Leunissen.pdf - Post-print

Download (338kB) | Preview

Abstract

An apology, as an expression of remorse, can be an effective response from a transgressor to obtain forgiveness from a victim. Yet, to be effective, the victim should not construe the transgressor’s actions in a cynical way. Because low-power people tend to interpret the actions of high-power people in a cynical way, we argue that an apology (vs. no apology) from high-power transgressors should be relatively ineffective in increasing forgiveness from low-power victims. We find support for this moderated mediation model in a critical incidents study (Study 1), a forced recall study (Study 2) among employees from various organizations, and a controlled laboratory experiment among business students (Study 3). These studies reveal the limited value of expressions of remorse by high-power people in promoting forgiveness.

Item Type: Journal article
Publication Title: Human Relations
Creators: Zheng, X., Van Dijke, M., Leunissen, J.M., Giurge, L.M. and De Cremer, D.
Publisher: SAGE for The Tavistock Institute
Date: June 2016
Volume: 69
Number: 6
ISSN: 0018-7267
Identifiers:
NumberType
10.1177/0018726715611236DOI
Divisions: Schools > Nottingham Business School
Schools > School of Social Sciences
Depositing User: Jill Tomkinson
Date Added: 18 Oct 2016 11:27
Last Modified: 09 Jun 2017 14:07
URI: http://irep.ntu.ac.uk/id/eprint/28873

Actions (login required)

Edit View Edit View

Views

Views per month over past year

Downloads

Downloads per month over past year