Journal of Organizational Behavior

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Volume 27 Issue 2 (March 2006), Pages 111-255

OCB as a handicap: an evolutionary psychological perspective (pages 185-199)


In this article, we seek to contribute to research on organizational citizenship behavior (OCB) by adopting a psychological evolutionary perspective that offers a novel way of interpreting such behaviors. Specifically, drawing on the handicap principle in evolutionary biology, we propose that by demonstrating the ability to bear the burden associated with costly OCBs, organizational members can credibly signal their otherwise unobservable capabilities to others. We develop a model that explores antecedents and outcomes of engaging in costly OCBs and offer avenues for future research within this framework. Copyright © 2006 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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