RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN THE PERCEPTION OF ORGANIZATIONAL CULTURE AND ETHICAL CLIMATE AND THE PERCEPTION OF WORKPLACE BULLYING (Relación entre la percepción de la cultura organizacional y el clima ético y la percepción del acoso laboral)

Madalena Vilas-Boas



Workplace bullying takes place in many organizations and it has serious consequences on individuals, organizations and economy. The main aim of this study is to contribute to the field of workplace bullying by empirically testing the theoretically defined relation between socio-organizational variables (organizational culture and ethical climate) and bullying, using two theoretical models well-grounded in organizational studies. The findings, from a sample of 984 Portuguese workers, suggest that there is a strong relation between organizational culture/ethical climate and bullying: the "benevolent" and "principled" climates are negatively related (or even an obstacle) to bullying, as well as the cultural orientation of "support". The opposite is the result of the climate "self-interest" and the cultural orientations of "rules" and "goals". As organizational culture and ethical climate explain 20% of the variance of the negative behaviours perceived by the members of the organization, what shows that managers can achieve changes to a significant organizational, individual and societal problem just by manipulating those two variables.


Keywords: Ethical Climate, Ethical Climate Questionnaire, Organizational Culture, Organizational Culture Assessment Instrument, Psychosocial Work Conditions, Workplace Bullying.



El acosso laboral se encuentra en muchas organizaciones y tiene graves consecuencias para las personas, las organizaciones y la economía. El objetivo principal de este estudio es contribuir al campo de estudio del acoso laboral probando empíricamente la relación teórica definida entre variables socio-organizacionales (cultura organizacional y clima ético) y acoso laboral, utilizando dos modelos teóricos fundamentados en estudios organizacionales. Los hallazgos, con 984 trabajadores portugueses, sugieren que existe una fuerte relación entre la cultura organizacional/clima ético y el acoso laboral: los climas "benévolo" y "de principios" están relacionados negativamente (o son incluso un obstáculo) con el acoso labroal, así como la orientación cultural de "soporte". Lo contrario sucede con el clima "interés propio" y las orientaciones culturales de "reglas" y "metas". La cultura organizacional y el clima ético explican el 20% de la varianza del comportamiento negativo, lo que muestra que los gerentes pueden lograr cambios en problemas organizacionales, individuales y sociales significativos manipulando esas dos variables.


Palabras clave: Clima Ético, Cuestionario de Clima Ético, Cultura Organizacional, Instrumento de Evaluación de la Cultura Organizacional, Condiciones Psicosociales de Trabajo, Acoso Laboral.

Palabras clave

Ethical climate, Ethical Climate Questionnaire, Organizational Culture, Organizational Culture Assessment Instrument, Psychosocial Work Conditions, Workplace Bullying

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