Self-love's lost labor: A self-enhancement model of workplace incivility

Amy Y Y CHEN, D. Lance Ferris, Ho Kwong Kwan, Ming Yan*, Mingjian Zhou, Ying Hong

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

87 Citations (Scopus)


We present a self-enhancement model of workplace incivility to account for the effects of exposure to incivility on task performance. In particular, we predict that workplace incivility thwarts the ability to self-enhance at work, resulting in employees' divesting their sense of self from work via disengagement processes. Maintaining high levels of task performance subsequently ceases to be a source of self-enhancement for employees who have disengaged their sense of self from work. We also examined the extent to which the desire for self-enhancement (i.e., narcissism) moderated the effect of incivility on engagement. Using two sets of multiwave, multisource data collected in China, our results provide full support for our hypotheses and provide new theoretical directions for incivility research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1199-1219
Number of pages21
JournalAcademy of Management Journal
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2013

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Business, Management and Accounting(all)
  • Strategy and Management
  • Management of Technology and Innovation


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