Promoting Constructive Deviance as an Antidote to Organizational Stress

Promoting Constructive Deviance as an Antidote to Organizational Stress

Naval Garg (Delhi Technological University, India) and Anubhuti Saxena (JIMS Engineering Management Technical Campus Greater Noida, India)
Copyright: © 2020 |Pages: 20
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-9996-8.ch008

Abstract

Constructive deviance has grabbed the attention of many firms as a more valuable research area. The potential for research in this area is huge as more researchers are actively contributing towards this topic. In this chapter, the authors aim to explore the impact of occupational stress on constructive deviant behavior among sales professionals by employing the general strain theory. Prior research has indicated sales profession to be highly stressful. The literature on stress suggests that stress doesn't only lead to negative impact on organizations, but it can be beneficial too. In this descriptive cross-sectional study, the sample included 247 sales professionals working in various firms in Delhi NCR. All of the participants were chosen by random sampling method. It has been found that stress has a significant impact on constructive deviant behavior among sales professionals. The implications and limitations of these findings are discussed.
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Introduction

Over the last two decades, out of the various challenges and changes that have taken place in management, the most intense have been the dramatic growth of job-related stress (Keichel, 1993). According to Times job survey (2018) conducted on 1500 professionals in India, seven in ten India Inc employees are unhappy at work. Amber Alam, head of business (India) at Optum International said that today the employers face the biggest challenge of fighting mental illness of their employees, which has a direct impact on their productivity. Stress has become a significant problem these days. According to Coleman (1976) the modern time which is considered to be the age of apprehensions and stress gets affected by a large number of stressors. Stress can be defined as a condition which makes a person digress from its normal routine role because of some difference in the psychological or physiological state (Beehr and Newman, 1978). Unhappy and stressed employees are less efficient, less effective and more likely to dissipate work hours and ultimately quit. Gradually the nature of work has changed and the changes are still in progress. In the contemporary work environment stress has become quite apparent because of the pressures for change occurring in many organizations. Organizations are growing to be more global, flexible, decentralized and highly performance oriented (Crant, 2000; Parker & Collins, 2010), which in a way is making it necessary for the employees to be more creative and innovative for sustainability (X. Zhang &Bartol, 2010, Madjar, Greenberg, & Chen, 2011) .As an outcome of these changes, there has been an increase in the number of illnesses, moral and human facets are losing away and new problems are occurring every day because of it we are coming across the “illness of the century - The Stress” . The consequences of stress for the organization can have various forms; it may result in increased rate of absenteeism (Houtman, Kornitzer et al, 1999), worst health, more risky behaviours (Siegrist& Rides, 2006). Managing stress and coping with it has become an area of concern for researchers as well as managers (Keaveney and Nelson, 1993; Struttonet al., 1995). Nevertheless, one significant research objective still persists to be unanswered: the firmness of purpose of how job stress affects Constructive Deviance and how stress influences employees’ behavior towards becoming deviant but in a positive way. These questions are closely connected and relevant to both managers and researchers.

The sales profession is competitive and is characterized by high level of job linked stress (Moncrief, Babakus, Cravens & Johnson, 1997; Porter, Kraft and Claycomb, 2008). The persistent pressure of globalization, retrenchment, layoffs, violence and bullying have negative effect on the work environment and increase the complexity of the sales profession (Badrinarayanan and Madhavaram, 2008). Sales profession is very demanding and sales professionals are ready to do anything for the sake of business, this mentality is now getting replaced by figuring out for self and inner peace. Salespersons spend maximum time at work and try to obtain their social identification from their work; the learning at work is of great importance for their psychological and physical well-being (Pfeffer 2003).

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