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Open AccessArticle

The Unethical Managerial Behaviours and Abusive Use of Power in Downwards Vertical Workplace Bullying: A Phenomenological Case Study

1
Umeå School of Business, Economics and Statistics (USBE), 901 87 Umeå, Sweden
2
Jack C. Massey College of Business, Belmont University, Nashville, TN 37212, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Soc. Sci. 2020, 9(6), 110; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci9060110
Received: 19 May 2020 / Revised: 15 June 2020 / Accepted: 18 June 2020 / Published: 24 June 2020
(This article belongs to the Section Work, Employment and the Labor Market)
The aim of this article is to introduce an ethical perspective of managerial behaviours to the study of vertical workplace bullying. A framework called the line of impunity was chosen that describes the missuses of power by certain ranks in organizations. Previous research on bullying addresses several perspectives such as the consequences of the bullying situation for the organization, the target and bystanders, the leadership style of the bully, the perceived structural support, and the manifestations of the abusive behaviours. However, to date, the ethical aspects have been poorly outlined. Applying the line of impunity brings light to several aspects of workplace bullying that are connected to an unethical use of power. This study is unusual because it is a phenomenological research based on two case studies that present the field experiences of two of the authors while working in different organizations, one in Sweden and the other in USA, during an extended period of time. The two main contributions of the study are the new concepts power methods and reinforcing, which highlight the connection between abusive behaviour and the ethical aspects that are present in downwards vertical workplace bullying situations. View Full-Text
Keywords: workplace bullying; abusive supervision; unethical management workplace bullying; abusive supervision; unethical management
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Medina, A.; Lopez, E.; Medina, R. The Unethical Managerial Behaviours and Abusive Use of Power in Downwards Vertical Workplace Bullying: A Phenomenological Case Study. Soc. Sci. 2020, 9, 110.

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