Voice Behavior with its Antecedents and Outcomes through the Lens of Proactive Behavior Theory
This study examined the antecedents and outcomes of both dimensions of voice behavior that are promotive voice behavior and prohibitive voice behavior through the lens of proactive behavior theory. Considering the importance of voice behavior for organization, this study aims to study that how workplace should be designed to foster employees to engage in voice behavior. It also aims to study importance of voice behavior for improved organizational functioning and to discuss that engaging in the voice behavior is not criticism over managers themselves since they are responsible for creating the policies for organization rather it is about flaws and issues in those policies that can hamper the organizational functioning. Convenience sampling was used and data were collected in four time lags to avoid common method bias. More than seven hundred questionnaires were distributed out of which four hundred fifteen were used with no missing values and outliers. Data were collected from employees and their immediate supervisors in different telecommunication firms in Pakistan. Dyads were developed. Confirmatory factor analysis confirmed the distinctiveness of variables incorporated in the study. The results of path analysis confirmed that core self-evaluation and supervisory delegation promote employees’ engagement in voice behavior. Felt obligation for constructive change and emotion regulation mediates the relationship between antecedents and voice behavior. This study contributes to the literature of employee voice behavior since limited attention was paid to examine the outcomes of both dimensions of voice behavior. Managerial hatred, workplace inclusion, and workplace exclusion were studied as outcomes of voice behavior. Study findings report that there is negative relationship between employee promotive voice and managerial hatred since that promotive voice is perceived constructive by managers. There is positive relationship between prohibitive voice and managerial hatred because prohibitive voice is considered as a criticism and complaint by managers. Findings also revealed that there is a positive relationship between promotive voice and employee perceived workplace inclusion by others as it is considered that the voice being raised is for collective betterment of all. Whereas negative relationship x between prohibitive voice and perceived workplace inclusion was not supported because prohibitive voice behavior is considered critical for improved organizational functioning. The negative relationship between promotive voice and perceived workplace exclusion was not supported but the positive relationship between prohibitive voice behavior and workplace exclusion is supported considering nature of voice as more a form of criticism and complaint. Role of voice climate was studied as the moderator for the relationship between felt obligation for constructive change and emotion regulation and outcomes i.e. both dimensions of voice behavior. Role of perceived risk was studied as the moderator for the relationship between both dimensions of voice behavior and possible outcomes that are managerial hatred, workplace inclusion and workplace exclusion. Pro-active behavior theory was used to support the findings. Implications for managers, policymakers, and researchers are also discussed in view of possible antecedents and outcomes of employee voice behavior. It is suggested that organizations need to focus on certain dispositional characteristics of employees and situational characteristics of workplace to provoke voice behavior among employees. The promotive voice is more future-oriented and attempts to make things better is considered constructive thus employees engaging in promotive voice behavior may face less unpleasant outcomes. Prohibitive voice behavior, which is more past and present-oriented, attempts to bring attention to factors that could turn loss to organizational sustainability and it is often interpreted as “what should be.” Thus it has more potential to challenge the status quo as most of the practices and policies are developed and shaped by senior management. Thus outcomes of prohibitive voice behavior may be less pleasant for voice raisers. Whereas an organizational climate that is high for expectation for voice behavior i.e., voice climate and involves lesser fears for engagement in voice behavior i.e. perceived risk is equally essential for assessing employees’ engagement in voice behavior.