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Counterproductive work behavior (CWB)

Updated: Mar 14, 2023

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


Counterproductive work behavior (CWB) is employee behavior that goes against the legitimate interests of an organization. [1] These behaviors can harm organizations or people in organizations including employees and clients, customers, or patients. It has been proposed that a person-by-environment interaction (the relationship between a person's psychological and physical capacities and the demands placed on those capacities by the person's social and physical environment.)[clarification needed] can be utilized to explain a variety of counterproductive behaviors. [2] For instance, an employee who is high on trait anger (tendency to experience anger) is more likely to respond to a stressful incident at work (e.g., being treated rudely by a supervisor) with CWB. Some researchers use the CWB term to subsume related constructs that are distinct:

  • Workplace deviance is behavior at work that violates norms for appropriate behavior. [3]

  • Retaliation consists of harmful behaviors done by employees to get back at someone who has treated them unfairly. [4]

  • Workplace revenge are behaviors by employees intended to hurt another person who has done something harmful to them. [5]

  • Workplace aggression consists of harmful acts that harm others in organizations. [6]

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This article pro­vides gen­eral infor­ma­tion and dis­cus­sion about personal development and related sub­jects. The words and other con­tent pro­vided in this blog, and in any linked mate­ri­als, are not intended and should not be con­strued as med­ical or legal advice. If the reader of this material has a med­ical or legal con­cern, he or she should con­sult with an appropriately health care provider or legal advisor.



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Evan Stark

Thank you Evan Stark for shining a light on such a pervasive and underhand tactic i.e. #coercivecontrol

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