Being different at work: How gender dissimilarity relates to social inclusion and absenteeism

Wiebren S. Jansen*, Sabine Otten, K.I. van der Zee

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

We investigated how and when gender dissimilarity relates to two highly important individual work outcomes: social inclusion and absenteeism. We collected survey data among 397 employees from a university of applied sciences and combined these with data from the organization’s personnel administration. Our results indicate that dissimilarity was negatively related to perceived work group inclusion. In addition, this negative effect was stronger when the group was perceived to have a negative diversity climate. Finally, there was a conditional indirect effect of gender dissimilarity on absenteeism through inclusion. That is, being different from other group members in terms of gender was associated with higher absenteeism through lower levels of perceived inclusion, but only when the group was perceived to have a negative diversity climate. Together, the present research demonstrates that sometimes being different is associated with more absences and underlines the importance of establishing a positive climate for gender diversity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)879-893
Number of pages15
JournalGroup Processes and Intergroup Relations
Volume20
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2017

Keywords

  • absenteeism
  • diversity climate
  • gender dissimilarity
  • gender diversity
  • inclusion

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