To reflect and learn: the emotional labor strategies of victims of workplace ostracism and the role of anger.J Soc Psychol. 2023 Sep 03; 163(5):637-654.JS
Research on coping with workplace ostracism has mainly focused on victims' behaviors. This study provides additional insights by focusing on victims' cognitive processes and emotion regulation to determine how workplace ostracism leads them to reflect and act on their emotions. Drawing on emotion regulation theory and ego depletion theory, we proposed a moderated mediation model to examine the mediating role of reflective learning in the relationships between workplace ostracism and emotional labor and the moderating effect of anger on the process. We conducted an experimental vignette study with 199 working adults in China. When the participants reported low levels of anger in response to workplace ostracism, they engaged in more surface acting and deep acting through reflective learning. However, when the participants reported high levels of anger, they did not use reflective learning effectively. We discuss the implications of these results for both research and practice.