Angry at your boss: Who cares? Anger recognition and mediation effectiveness

K.N.L. Bollen, M.C. Euwema

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

The key to success for workplace mediators lies in establishing a relationship of understanding, empathy, and trust with the conflicting parties. Literature suggests that the recognition of parties' emotions by the mediator is essential to obtain such a relation. Although anger is one of the most prevailing emotions in conflict, little is known about how parties react to the experience of anger recognition on the part of the mediator, how this affects their perceptions of mediation effectiveness, and whether this is moderated by the hierarchical position parties occupy. Drawing on theories of power, emotions, and conflict, this study tests the hypothesis that conflicting parties in workplace mediation who experience anger recognition on the part of the mediator perceive the mediation as more effective and that this is more so for subordinates than for supervisors. Data collected in real labour mediations support this. Implications for mediation theory and practice are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)256-266
Number of pages11
JournalEuropean Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology
Volume24
Issue number2
Early online date12 Mar 2014
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 4 Mar 2015

Keywords

  • Mediation effectiveness
  • Hierarchical conflict
  • Labour conflict
  • Anger recognition
  • Mediation
  • STATISTICAL CONTROL
  • RELATIONSHIP CONFLICT
  • WORKPLACE CONFLICT
  • POWER
  • WORK
  • NEGOTIATION
  • MANAGEMENT
  • EMOTIONS
  • INHIBITION
  • VALIDATION

Cite this