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The relationship between bureaucracy and workplace friendship

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The relationship between bureaucracy and workplace friendship remains largely unknown in the organizational literature on workplace friendship. Competing hypotheses for that relationship were proposed. On one hand, bureaucracy's characteristics indicate bureaucratic organizations' attitude is unfavorable to, and thus detracts from, workplace friendship. On the other hand, those characteristics lead to employees' negative feelings at work and thus promote their workplace friendship. Data collected via a questionnaire survey of 408 employees in the medical, education, governmental, and banking sectors show that bureaucracy is negatively related to workplace friendship. Our finding provides an organizational perspective, a different angle from the factors of employees' perspective in the extant literature, from which to view and manage the issue of the decrease of workplace friendship in the organization.
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Keywords: BUREAUCRACY; BUREAUCRATIC PROCEDURES/RULES; HIERARCHY; WORKPLACE FRIENDSHIP; WORKPLACE IMPERSONALITY

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2009-03-01

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