Are Organizational Justice Rules Gendered? Reactions to Men’s and Women’s Justice Violations

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Abstract

Research has shown that gender role prescriptions can bias reactions to men’s and women’s work behaviors. The current work draws upon this idea and extends it to consider violations of procedural and interactional justice rules. The results of four experimental studies demonstrate that men and women receive differential performance evaluation ratings and reward recommendations when they violate those organizational justice rules that coincide with the content of prescriptive gender stereotypes. Specifically, women were rated less favorably than men when they exhibited interactional injustice (Study 1 and Study 4), but not when they engaged in procedural injustice (Study 2). Findings also indicate that interactional justice violations (e.g., being impolite, not caring about the well-being of subordinates), but not procedural justice violations, are deemed less acceptable for female managers than male managers (Study 3). Overall, the findings suggest that reactions to injustice can be influenced by expectations of how men and women should behave.

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