How organizational dehumanization impacts hospitality employees service recovery performance and sabotage behaviors: the role of psychological well-being and tenure

Huy Gip, Priyanko Guchait, Aysin Paşamehmetoğlu, Do The Khoa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The purpose of this study is to examine the mediating effect of psychological well-being between organizational dehumanization and two outcome variables: service recovery performance and service sabotage. This research also investigates whether organizational tenure moderates the relationship between organizational dehumanization and psychological well-being.

Using survey methodology, 200 hotel frontline service employees (FLEs) in Turkey were sampled over two time points. Additionally, employees’ direct supervisors rated their service recovery performance. The partial least squares method, specifically SmartPLS 3.3.3, was used for data analysis.

The results indicate that organizational dehumanization negatively influences employees’ psychological well-being. However, organizational tenure moderates this relationship, in which organizational dehumanization has less of a negative effect on employees’ psychological well-being in those with longer tenure. Psychological well-being was found to mediate the relationship between organizational dehumanization and service recovery performance. Finally, psychological well-being mediates the relationship between organizational dehumanization and service sabotage.

Practical implications
Managers should consider the negative effect organizational dehumanization has on FLEs’ psychological well-being and aim to establish an organizational culture that values these employees as individuals and as invaluable resources for the organization. Further, this study has found that less tenured employees are less likely to have the psychological resources to cope with organizational dehumanization and are more susceptible to decreased productivity (i.e. service recovery performance) and engaging in counterproductive work behaviors (i.e. service sabotage) due to mistreatment in the workplace.

This study furthers our understanding of organizational dehumanization, an understudied concept in hospitality research, which influences employee outcomes. The findings of this study contribute to the advancement of the self-determination theory and how organizational dehumanization impacts psychological well-being. It also contributes to the conservation of resources theory and current literature on service recovery performance and service sabotage.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)64-91
Number of pages28
JournalInternational Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 19 Aug 2022


  • tenure
  • psychological well-being
  • service recovery performance
  • service sabotage
  • organizational dehumanization

Cite this