Volume 18 / Issue 3 / Pages 1-13 - Papers in the same Issue

The Dark Side of Being Proactive: Trapped in Rumination - A Mediated Model

Sarkar, J.


Read Online   Download Paper


Abstract: Previous research in the organizational behaviour domain is dominated by research on the positive consequences of proactive work behaviour (PWB) while completely ignoring its dark side. Given that, this study investigates the dark side of PWB through the stress and strain caused by rumination. Relying on conservation of resources theory, this study proposes that proactive behaviour is a resource-consuming activity that causes rumination, which, in turn, results in WLC. Further, the paper hypothesizes that external motivation towards proactivity caused by peer pressure has a multiplier effect. A quantitative approach was taken to verify associations through covariance-based structural equation modelling using SPSS AMOS (v.23) and the mediating effect was investigated using a bootstrapping technique (Hayes, 2012). The study's findings are based on a survey conducted on 220 tech employees from IT organizations. Analyses revealed that on the one hand reflection (reflective pondering) weakens the impact of PWB on WLC but on the other hand brooding strengthens the aforesaid relationship. This study offers various avenues for further research and will help organizations in several ways. There is a scarcity of research work examining the mediating effect of rumination on the relationship between proactive personality and work-life conflict. Therefore, this study contributes to the knowledge regarding the dark side of being proactive at work. The results deepen theoretical understanding of the consequences of proactive work behaviour and work-to-life conflict. The current study also contributes to the literature by identifying work related rumination (reflective pondering and brooding) as a mediating mechanism explaining the relationship between proactive work behaviour and work-to-life conflict. The findings could help organizations to identify the employees with proactive behaviour and form supportive policies for them so that the negative spillover of rumination of work to life (the home) can be prevented.

Keywords: proactive work behaviour, rumination, reflective pondering, reflection, brooding, work-to-life conflict


Type: Research Paper // Submitted: 2023-05-23 // Published: 2023-11-04

Download Citation: BibTex // PDF Downloads: 580 // PDF Filesize: 360Kb

Open Access: © The Authors - Published under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Licence


Back / Return to Library