An examination of workplace aggression, job performance, and flow-states

John P Sayn-Wittgenstein, Florida International University


This dissertation addresses both the terminological diversity problem raised in the workplace aggression literature and the mechanism by which workplace aggression may impact job performance in a series of studies. In addressing the first question, the factor structure of incivility, interpersonal conflict, bullying, abusive supervision, and social undermining was investigated using a single factor model and a second order model. . Data was collected across two studies consisting of samples of 410 students and 247 working adults, respectively. The results indicated relatively better fit for the second order model, showing all of the workplace aggression constructs items loading on their original construct. The unique variance contributed by workplace aggression constructs was also tested in study two using self-rated performance ratings and the experience of flow-states. The results indicated that there were no tangible differences in the variance explained between the five aggression construct. Together, these findings suggest that there is a terminological diversity problem in the workplace aggression literature as each construct may be tapping into the same latent workplace aggression variable. Further, the indirect effect of workplace aggression through the experience of flow states was supported using multi-wave data. This dissertation highlight the current state of the literature, supporting our understanding that the experience of workplace aggression is both detrimental to work related performance and impacts the mechanisms individuals use in engaging with the world around them.

Subject Area

Social psychology|Occupational psychology

Recommended Citation

Sayn-Wittgenstein, John P, "An examination of workplace aggression, job performance, and flow-states" (2016). ProQuest ETD Collection for FIU. AAI10255612.