Creative And Entitled: How The Creative Identity Entitles Dishonest Behaviors
This dissertation demonstrates how a salient self-concept as a creative individual promotes dishonest behavior. Specifically, I show that the creative identity increases a sense of entitlement, which, in turn, increases dishonesty. In study 1, participants primed with a creative identity compared to a logical identity reported higher levels of psychological entitlement. In study 2, participants primed with a creative identity engaged in greater dishonesty than participants primed with a logical identity. This effect and the association with psychological entitlement became stronger when participants were more self-aware. Self-awareness also increased individuals with creative identities' sense of entitlement. Study 3 directly examined entitlement as a potential mechanism that may explain the relationship between the creative identity and dishonesty. A sense of entitlement was manipulated directly, and the results indicated that creative identity did not increase dishonesty when entitlement was low, suggesting that the relationship between the creative identity and dishonesty functions through psychological entitlement. In study 4, rebelliousness was tested as an alternative mechanism; however, the results indicated that rebelliousness is not the mechanism for the relationship between the creative identity and dishonesty. Finally, in study 5, how other individuals perceive individuals with a creative identity is explored. The results indicate that individuals expect individuals with a creative identity to be entitled, rebellious, and less moral; however, despite these negative associations, evaluators are more lenient on individuals with a creative identity after a dishonest behavior. Therefore, the costs of the creative identity are two-fold. First, individuals with a creative identity are more dishonest. However, the second more insidious cost is that other individuals are more accepting of that dishonesty. Understanding this connection may allow organizations to receive the benefits associated with the creative identity without incurring the costs of increased dishonesty.
Creative identity; dishonesty; psychological entitlement
Goncalo, Jack A.Goncalo, Jack A.
Lawler, Edward J; Hancock, Jeffrey T.; Lawler, Edward J; Hancock, Jeffrey T.
Industrial and Labor Relations
Ph. D., Industrial and Labor Relations
Doctor of Philosophy
dissertation or thesis