Date of Award

5-2010

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Legacy Department

Industrial and Organizational Psychology

Advisor

Taylor, Mary Anne

Committee Member

Rosopa , Patrick J

Committee Member

Sinclair , Robert R

Committee Member

Winslow-Bowe , Sarah

Abstract

Workplace heterosexism has been linked to numerous negative outcomes for gay, lesbian, and bisexual (GLB) employees. While GLB is the term commonly used in the literature, research examining workplace heterosexism often focuses on gay and lesbian (GL) employees. Thus, GL was the term used in the current study. Negative outcomes of workplace heterosexism include concealing one's sexual identity, the use of identity management strategies to keep one's sexual orientation a secret, increased psychological distress, and greater organizational withdrawal. The current study examined self-monitoring, neuroticism, and locus of control as individual difference variables that can affect the relationship between workplace heterosexism and the negative outcomes that are experienced by GL employees and organizations.
As hypothesized, results indicated that workplace heterosexism was negatively related to the disclosure of one's sexual identity at work and the use of integrating identity management strategies, as hypothesized. Workplace heterosexism was also positively related to the use of counterfeiting and avoiding identity management strategies, psychological distress, and work and job withdrawal, as hypothesized.
Hypotheses regarding the moderating effects of self monitoring, neuroticism, and locus of control on the outcome variables were also tested. Self-monitoring moderated the relationship between workplace heterosexism and work withdrawal; however, the pattern of the interaction was not consistent with the proposed relationship. Additionally, neuroticism moderated the workplace heterosexism-counterfeiting relationship and the workplace heterosexism-job withdrawal relationship, as hypothesized. Finally, consistent with the hypotheses, locus of control moderated the workplace heterosexism-disclosure relationship and the workplace heterosexism-avoiding relationship, as well as the workplace heterosexism-integrating relationship. Thus, locus of control had a consistent moderating effect on the relationship between workplace heterosexism and personal outcomes for sexual minority employees. Theoretical and practical implications of the significant findings are discussed.

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