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date: 01 October 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter provides an overview of the antecedents and consequences of gossip in work groups. First, the chapter reviews the different motives for gossip in work groups (i.e., bonding, entertainment, emotional venting, information exchange, maintenance of group norms/social order, and interpersonal aggression) and links each motive to psychological theory. Second, the chapter reviews the different types of influence that gossip can have on various indicators of group effectiveness. Reflecting on the motives underlying gossip in work groups, as well as on its outcomes, it argues that future research should start integrating the diverse insights provided by earlier research on both gossip motives and outcomes, and it provides a number of suggestions for doing so.

Keywords: gossip, work groups, teams, motives, task performance, inclusion, viability

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