When do business units benefit more from collective citizenship behavior of management teams? An upper echelons perspective

Wu Liu, Yaping Gong, Jun Liu

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Drawing upon the notion of managerial discretion from upper echelons theory, we theorize which external contingencies moderate the relationship between collective organizational citizenship behavior (COCB) and unit performance. Focusing on business unit (BU) management teams, we hypothesize that COCB of BU management teams enhances BU performance and that this impact depends on environmental uncertainty and BU management-team decision latitude, 2 determinants of managerial discretion. In particular, the positive effect of COCB is stronger when environmental uncertainty or the BU management-team decision latitude is greater. Time-lagged data from 109 BUs of a telecommunications company support the hypotheses. Additional exploratory analysis shows that the positive moderating effect of environmental uncertainty is further amplified at higher levels of BU management-team decision latitude. Overall, this study extends the internally focused view in the micro OCB literature by introducing external contingencies for the COCB-unit-performance relationship
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)523-534
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Applied Psychology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014


  • Collective organizational citizenship behavior
  • Management team
  • Managerial discretion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology

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