Prof. Dr. Prisca Brosi


Associate Professor of Human Resource Management


Journal Articles (Peer-Reviewed)

DOI: 10.1007/s10551-017-3746-5 

Abstract: Setting out to understand the effects of positive moral emotions in leadership, this research examines the consequences of leaders’ expressions of gratitude and pride for their followers. In two experimental vignette studies (N = 261; N = 168) and a field study (N = 294), leaders’ gratitude expressions showed a positive effect and leaders’ pride expressions showed a negative effect on followers’ ascriptions of leader selfishness. Thereby, leaders’ gratitude expression indirectly led to higher follower satisfaction with and OCB towards the leader, while leaders’ pride expressions indirectly reduced satisfaction with and OCB towards the leader. Furthermore, leaders’ expressions of gratitude indirectly reduced followers’ intentions to leave the leader, while leaders’ expressions of pride indirectly fuelled them. Although ascriptions of selfishness consistently influenced these leader outcomes more strongly than comparable organizational outcomes, results on organizational outcomes were mixed. While leaders’ expressions of gratitude led, as expected, to higher job satisfaction and lower turnover intentions, leaders’ expressions of pride showed positive relations with both OCB towards the organization and intentions to leave the organization. We discuss the theoretical implications of leaders’ expressions of positive moral emotions as signals of outcome attributions, as well as leaders’ selfishness and practical implications that help leaders build followers’ satisfaction and positive leader–follower relationships.

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Open reference in new window "Satisfied with the Job, But Not with the Boss: Leaders’ Expressions of Gratitude and Pride Differentially Signal Leader Selfishness, Resulting in Differing Levels of Followers’ Satisfaction"

DOI: 10.1007/s10869-017-9523-8 

Abstract: While previous research has assumed that intense leader anger displays result in negative consequences, researchers have recently started to outline their potential for prompting followers to improve their performance. We explain these conflicting positions by demonstrating that leaders’ anger intensity positively affects both deviance and work effort through triggering anger and anxiety in followers. We conducted two critical incident studies, replicating our results with different methodologies and controlling for potential alternative explanations. In line with theories on reciprocal emotions, supervisor-directed deviance became more likely with higher leader anger intensity because followers reacted with correspondingly more anger. However, in line with theories on complementary emotions, leaders’ anger intensity was also positively related to followers’ work effort due to followers’ anxiety. These results were replicated when taking leaders’ anger appropriateness into account as a potential moderator of the deviance-related path and when controlling for followers’ feelings of guilt (an alternative explanation for followers’ work effort). Our paper provides evidence that intense anger displays increase followers’ work effort but also cautions leaders to show these, as the work effort caused by them is based on followers’ intimidation and likely to be accompanied by deviant reactions. By considering the affective reactions triggered in followers, our paper integrates diverging theoretical perspectives on followers’ reactions to leaders’ anger intensity. Moreover, it is one of the first to disentangle the interpersonal effects that different expressions of the same emotion may have.

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Open reference in new window "Sparking Anger and Anxiety: Why Intense Leader Anger Displays Trigger Both More Deviance and Higher Work Effort in Followers"

DOI: 10.1007/s10551-017-3600-9 

Abstract: Based on a field study (N = 303), this paper explores the differential role that perceived top management trustworthiness has on female and male employees’ negative emotions and turnover intentions in organizations. A theoretical model is established that explicates a negative indirect effect of perceived top management trustworthiness on employee turnover intentions through employee negative emotions. The results reveal that there is a negative relationship between perceived top management trustworthiness and employee negative emotions and resulting turnover intentions and that this effect is stronger for female employees than for male employees. These results demonstrate the pivotal role played by top management trustworthiness, provide an explanation for the turnover gender gap, and highlight the subjectivity in reactions to trustworthiness perceptions. The implications for organizations are discussed in line with the need for top management to positively influence employees and particularly women, to retain them in their workforce.

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Open reference in new window "The Effect of Top Management Trustworthiness on Turnover Intentions via Negative Emotions: The Moderating Role of Gender"

DOI: 10.1007/s40685-018-0061-7 

Abstract: This study derives a conceptual framework for examining parallel and differential influences of organizational pride in employees’ efforts versus abilities on proactivity. Data from a field survey (N = 1218) confirm our theoretical model. Organizational pride in employees’ efforts and organizational pride in employees’ abilities both had positive indirect effects on proactive behaviors via affective organizational commitment. Yet, whereas organizational pride in employees’ efforts additionally had a direct positive effect on individual and team member proactivity, organizational pride in employees’ abilities showed a direct negative effect on proactive behaviors for the self, the team, and the organization including a behavioral measurement of employees’ provision of ideas for improvement. These findings contribute to the nascent literature on organizational pride by indicating towards employees as source of organizational pride, highlighting potential negative effects of organizational pride, and introducing the differentiation between employees’ efforts and abilities.

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Open reference in new window "Do we work hard or are we just great? The effects of organizational pride due to effort and ability on proactive behavior"

DOI: 10.1002/hrm.21882 

Abstract: This study examines support for quotas for women in leadership, a currently highly debated topic in management research and practice. Using a sample of German working adults (N = 761), our results suggest that stereotypes about women (n = 380) are significantly related to support for quotas for women in leadership. Ascriptions of agency to typical women, that is, the extent to which women are generally seen as assertive, active, and strong, were positively related to participants' support for quotas for women in leadership in male‐gendered industries and high hierarchical positions, whereas ascriptions of communality to typical women, that is, the extent to which women are seen as understanding, supportive, and caring, were generally positively related. This pattern emerged for both male and female participants. Unexpectedly, gender‐stereotypic ascriptions to men (n = 381) were also related to support for quotas for women in leadership—with a positive relationship with agency in male‐gendered industries and a general negative relationship with communality, although these results were less pronounced. Implications for organizations are derived from these results, highlighting how the introduction of quotas for women in leadership can be smoothed by addressing how employees see women in terms of agency and communality.

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Open reference in new window "Support for quotas for women in leadership: The influence of gender stereotypes"

DOI: 10.5771/0935-9915-2018-2-114 

Abstract: Due to recent technological advances, organizations currently face massive changes of their work design and leadership. Unfortunately, the exact nature of these changes is still unclear as most existing studies were conducted during earlier stages of the digital transformation and the available literature is highly fragmented. To provide an up-to-date overview on the changes in work design and leadership resulting from the digital transformation and to structure our existing knowledge in this domain, we conducted an open-ended online survey with 49 recognized digitalization experts and identified key themes of change. In sum, four key themes of change affecting both work design and leadership emerged, namely changes in work-life and health, the use of information and communication technology, performance and talent management and organizational hierarchies. In addition, two macro-level change dimensions regarding the structure of work and relationship-oriented leadership evolved. While some of the identified changes were partly covered in earlier studies, others have so far not received much attention despite their apparently high relevance in the current stage of the digital transformation. The results of this study therefore provide an important basis for future research and help organizations to strategically prepare for the requirements of the digital age.

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Open reference in new window "How Does the Digital Transformation Affect Organizations? Key Themes of Change in Work Design and Leadership"

DOI: 10.1007/s40685-016-0040-9 

Abstract: Companies regularly have to address opposing interests from their shareholding and non-shareholding stakeholder groups. Consequently, a wealth of previous research has focused on how CEOs decide which stakeholder management activities to pursue and prioritize. In contrast, however, surprisingly little research has considered how (potential) investors react to a company’s management of shareholding and non-shareholding stakeholders and what factors drive their reactions in such contexts. We seek to fill this gap in the literature by conducting an experimental scenario study (N = 997) in which investment behavior is analyzed in situations in which management has to make a trade-off between shareholders’ and non-shareholding stakeholders’ interests. Our results show that (potential) investors consider the assumed costs of fulfilling non-shareholding stakeholders’ interests and the perceived sustainability of doing so for corporate success when making investment decisions in such contexts. In cases of low costs or high sustainability, participants were more willing to invest in a company that favored non-shareholding over shareholding stakeholders (thereby deciding against their immediate financial interests), while the opposite was true in cases of high costs or low sustainability. With these results, our paper broadens stakeholder theory’s focus by taking individual investors’ reactions to corporate stakeholder management into account. Moreover, it both provides evidence for and extends the “Enlightened Stakeholder Theory”, which proposes that organizations should fulfill stakeholders’ interests if doing so contributes to long-term firm value enhancement, but has so far not considered the role of the costs necessary for fulfilling stakeholders’ claims in such decisions.

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Open reference in new window "Investors’ reactions to companies’ stakeholder management: the crucial role of assumed costs and perceived sustainability"

DOI: 10.1108/JMP-08-2016-0235 

Abstract: Purpose Current research suggests a positive link between followers’ perceptions of their leaders’ expression of positive emotions and followers’ trust in their leaders. Based on the theories about the social function of emotions, the authors aim to qualify this generalized assumption. The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate that followers’ perceptions of leaders’ expressions of specific positive emotions – namely, pride and gratitude – differentially influence follower ratings of leaders’ trustworthiness (benevolence, integrity, and ability), and, ultimately, trust in the leader. Design/methodology/approach The hypotheses were tested using a multimethod approach combining experimental evidence (n=271) with longitudinal field data (n=120). Findings Both when experimentally manipulating leaders’ emotion expressions and when measuring followers’ perceptions of leaders’ emotion expressions, this research found leaders’ expressions of pride to be consistently associated with lower perceived benevolence, while leaders’ expressions of gratitude were associated with higher perceptions of benevolence and integrity. Originality/value This paper theoretically and empirically establishes that leaders’ expressions of discrete positive emotions differentially influence followers’ trust in the leader via trustworthiness perceptions.

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Open reference in new window "Leader pride and gratitude differentially impact follower trust"

DOI: 10.1007/s10869-016-9467-4 

Abstract: Although research has shown that anger displays lead to more perceived power than sadness displays, sadness displays often result in more positive leadership outcomes than anger displays. Aiming to explain this discrepancy, we examine the specific power bases that are inferred from leaders’ anger versus sadness displays as potential explanatory mechanisms.

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Open reference in new window "It’s the Base: Why Displaying Anger Instead of Sadness Might Increase Leaders’ Perceived Power but Worsen Their Leadership Outcomes"

DOI: 10.1108/JMP-05-2015-0186 

Abstract: Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate the influence of two different facets of pride – authentic and hubristic – on helping. Design/methodology/approach – Hypotheses were tested combining an experimental vignette study (n=75) with correlational field research (n=184). Findings – Results reveal that hubristic pride is associated with lower levels of intended helping compared with authentic pride when experimentally induced; further, trait hubristic pride is negatively related with helping, whereas trait authentic pride is positively related to helping, while controlling for alternative affective and cognitive explanations. Research limitations/implications – The use of vignettes and self-reports limits the ecological validity of the results. But when considered in combination, results provide important indications on how helping can be fostered in organizations: by emphasizing successes and the efforts that were necessary to achieve them. Originality/value – The results highlight the differential effects of discrete emotions in organizations.

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Open reference in new window "Two facets of pride and helping"

Journal Articles (Professional)

DOI: 10.1007/s11573-014-0754-0 

Abstract: Employer branding for universities is an under-researched but highly important topic because it supports universities in the global competition to attract and retain the best academic talents. Academic work differs from corporate work with regard to, for example, task portfolios, autonomy, salaries, and reward systems. Thus, results of previous research gained from corporate settings about successful employer branding is not easily transferable to the university context. This study is the first to examine which employer branding attributes attract international postdoctoral scholars to academic positions. The results from an experimental metric conjoint design with 285 international postdoctoral scholars identify the relationship quality with a scientific mentor and scientific autonomy as the most important attributes. Furthermore, the availability of research scholarships, general training opportunities, and tenure track positions significantly increases the attraction of an academic position for postdoctoral scholars. In line with approaches on employer branding segmentation, we further show that job attributes differ in the strength of their positive influence on postdocs’ probability to apply for an academic position resulting from gender differences, field of research and geographic origin. In the conclusions of the paper, we discuss the implications of our findings for universities that aim to build a sustainable employer brand.

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Open reference in new window "Employer branding for Universities: what attracts international postdocs?"

DOI: 10.1027/1866-5888/a000083 

Abstract: Previous research indicates that trait positive affectivity (PA) directly and indirectly influences individuals’ evaluations of reward sizes. However, research shows conflicting results on the direction of PA’s moderating influence. Furthermore, past studies fail to differentiate evaluations of one’s own rewards versus rewards for others, which is particularly important as reward systems are designed from a third-person perspective. Our experimental design confirms PA’s direct and moderating effects on the evaluation of one’s own rewards, finding stronger positive relationship for small-to-moderate rewards but weaker positive relationship for moderate-to-large rewards. These evaluation processes further show that individuals high (low) in PA perceive their own rewards as being larger (smaller) than rewards for others. The discussion addresses the implications for designing reward systems in organizations.

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Open reference in new window "Evaluations of One’s Own and Others’ Financial Rewards"


Abstract: Bislang sprechen wir über Digitalisierung im Kontext von Menschen und Führungsaufgaben, aber nie in Bezug auf Organisationen. Es müssen aber auch die strukturellen Voraussetzungen gegeben sein, wenn ein Unternehmen seine Kultur ändern soll. Das Team um Isabell Welpe hat in einem mehrjährigen Forschungsprojekt Unternehmen im Digitalisierungsprozess begleitet und analysiert. In diesem Buch präsentieren die Autorinnen erstmals die fünf Erfolgsfaktoren für den Switch zur digitalen Organisation. Zusätzlich zu den Big Five geben sie Führungskräften einen Selbstdiagnose-Check sowie einen 10-Punkte-Plan für die Praxis mit auf den Weg.

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Open reference in new window "Digital Work Design: Die Big Five für Arbeit, Führung und Organisation im digitalen Zeitalter"

Abstract: Experten aus Wirtschaft, Wissenschaft, Medien und Politik beleuchten in diesem Buch die Auswahl und Beurteilung von Führungskräften umfassend und praxisnah. Wissenschaftliche Beiträge, Erfahrungsberichte und Interviews ermöglichen den Transfer zwischen Forschung und Praxis. Ein spezieller Fokus liegt auf dem Thema Frauen in Führung. Der Inhalt: · Herausforderungen bei der Auswahl und Beurteilung von Führungskräften · Auswahl und Beurteilung von Männern und Frauen als Führungskräfte · Lösungsmöglichkeiten zur Verbesserung der Auswahl und Beurteilung von Führungskräften auf individueller, organisationaler, medialer und gesellschaftlich-politischer Ebene. Die Herausgeber: Prof. Dr. Isabell M. Welpe ist Inhaberin des Lehrstuhls für Strategie und Organisation der TU München. Sie forscht zu den Bereichen Führung, Zukunft der Arbeit, Einfluss von Digitalisierung auf Organisationen und Unternehmen sowie strategischer Innovation. Dr. Prisca Brosi ist Post-Doc am Lehrstuhl für Strategie und Organisation. Ihre Forschungsinteressen liegen im Bereich Führung, Diversity und Emotionen im Arbeitsleben. Dipl.-Psych. Lisa Ritzenhöfer ist Mitarbeiterin am Lehrstuhl für Strategie und Organisation. In ihrer Forschung beschäftigt sie sich mit Emotionen und Vertrauen in Führungskräfte. Dipl.-Psych. Tanja Schwarzmüller ist Mitarbeiterin am Lehrstuhl für Strategie und Organisation. Sie forscht zu Emotionen bei Führungskräften und Stereotypen in der Personalauswahl.

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Open reference in new window "Auswahl von Männern und Frauen als Führungskräfte"

Conference Proceedings

DOI: 10.5465/ambpp.2016.191 

Abstract: Two experimental studies were conducted to investigate how willingness to lead and willingness to follow are influenced by pride expressions, and how these influences differ depending if the pride expresser is a man or woman. Results showed that individuals were seen as more willing to lead and less willing to follow when expressing pride than when expressing happiness. These effects were stronger for female pride expressers than for male pride expressers. In addition, the difference in how women and men were seen in willingness to lead and willingness to follow that was apparent when happiness was expressed, disappeared when pride was expressed. For willingness to lead, gender disparities were explained by perceptions of dominance, whereas for willingness to follow, gender disparities were explained by perceptions of other-focus.

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Open reference in new window "Willing to Lead, Not Willing to Follow: Gender-Specific Inferences from Pride Expressions"

Book Chapters

DOI: 10.1007/978-3-662-53202-7_43 

Abstract: Die digitale Transformation wird zu tiefgreifenden Veränderungen von Geschäftsmodellen, Organisationen und Arbeitsgestaltung führen. Entsprechend werden auch gänzlich neue Anforderungen an Führungskräfte gestellt. Um diese veränderten Anforderungen greifbar zu machen, haben wir eine großangelegte Befragung von Experten aus Wirtschaft, Wissenschaft, Verbänden und Politik durchgeführt, deren Ergebnisse wir in diesem Kapitel vorstellen. Dabei betonten die befragten Experten, dass durch die digitale Transformation die Abgabe von Macht von Führungskräften an Mitarbeitende zunehmen wird, die Wichtigkeit wird von beziehungsförderndem und coachenden Verhalten von Führungskräften gegenüber Mitarbeitenden steigen und Führungskompetenzen wie Agilität, Veränderungsmanagement und Führung auf Distanz eine stärkere Rolle einnehmen werden. Mitarbeiterleistungen werden transparenter und sollten von Führungskräften daher entsprechend ergebnisorientiert bewertet werden. Darüber hinaus wird durch die Digitalisierung auch mehr Druck auf Mitarbeitende entstehen, welchen Führungskräfte durch gesundheitsbewusste Führung abfedern sollten. Führung selbst wird insgesamt stärker technologisiert, d. h. durch digitale Tools unterstützt, werden. Diese Veränderungen von Führung werden am Beispiel von Organisationen verschiedener Größen und Branchen illustriert.

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Open reference in new window "Führung 4.0 ‐ Wie die Digitalisierung Führung verändert"

DOI: 10.1007/978-3-658-09692-2_12 

Abstract: Durch die Digitalisierung verändert sich nicht nur die Gesellschaft, sondern auch die Arbeitswelt in zunehmendem Maße. Diese Entwicklung geht sowohl mit Chancen als auch mit Risiken für Mitarbeitende einher. Die Notwendigkeit, diese Chancen und Risiken effektiv zu managen, führt zu veränderten Anforderungen an Führungskräfte, welche beispielsweise flexible Arbeitsmodelle erfolgreich gestalten oder die Arbeit in globalen Teams ermöglichen müssen. In Summe stellen insbesondere die durch Digitalisierung zunehmende Komplexität, die beschleunigten Veränderungen inner- und außerhalb von Organisationen und der erhöhte Innovationsdruck Führungskräfte vor neue Herausforderungen. Im folgenden Beitrag werden diese näher beleuchtet und zentrale Verhaltensweisen für Führungskräfte aufgezeigt, um im digitalen Zeitalter erfolgreich führen zu können.

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Open reference in new window "Führung im digitalen Zeitalter"

DOI: 10.1007/978-3-642-31052-2_15 

Abstract: Trotz der weitreichenden Konsequenzen von negativem Führungsverhalten, hat sich die Führungsliteratur bis vor circa 15 Jahren weitestgehend auf die Untersuchung von positivem Führungsverhalten beschränkt. Dieses Kapitel beleuchtet schlaglichtartig die noch junge Forschungsliteratur zu negativem Führungsverhalten, sowie dessen wichtigste Antezedenzien: dysfunktionale Persönlichkeitsmerkmale und situative Einflüsse. Negatives Führungsverhalten wird dabei weit umfassend als den Mitarbeitenden und/oder dem Unternehmen schadendes Führungsverhalten definiert. Nach einer Übersicht über die bisher noch sehr heterogene Landschaft unterschiedlicher Definitionen negativen Führungsverhaltens (d. h., beleidigende, tyrannische, aversive, despotische, und destruktive Führung), werden die drei wichtigsten dysfunktionalen Persönlichkeitsmerkmale in Bezug auf negative Führung vorgestellt: Narzissmus, Hybris und Machiavellianismus. Anschließend werden situative Einflüsse auf negatives Führungsverhalten untergliedert in Merkmale der Mitarbeitenden und Umwelteinflüsse diskutiert. Die Relevanz der Ergebnisse der Forschung zu negativer Führung wird im Hinblick auf die Einführung von Corporate Governance Richtlinien, Unternehmensinitiativen und einzelne Führungskräfte sowie der aktuellen wirtschaftlichen Gesamtsituation näher betrachtet. Zum Abschluss werden drei wichtige zukünftige Trends in Bezug auf negative Führung ‐ die Rolle der Medien, die Virtualisierung der Arbeit, sowie die Globalisierung ‐ vorgestellt und deren Auswirkungen im Hinblick auf negative Führung diskutiert.

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Open reference in new window "Die dunkle Seite der Führung: Negatives Führungsverhalten, dysfunktionale Persönlichkeitsmerkmale und situative Einflussfaktoren"