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Human Resource Management and Evolutionary Psychology

Exploring the Biological Foundations of Managing People at Work

Andrew R. Timming

Answering pressing questions regarding employee selection and mobbing culture in the workplace, Andrew R. Timming explores the unique intersection of the biological sciences and human resource management.
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Chapter 2: Understanding the evolutionary bases of workplace mobbing behavior: a bio-psycho-social model

Andrew R. Timming


This chapter examines the phenomenon of workplace mobbing behavior through the lenses of evolutionary psychology. It offers a theoretical framework that explains mobbing aggression at work. The chapter first defines workplace mobbing. It then articulates an ethological theory of mobbing behavior in the animal kingdom. It is argued that mobbing is a natural biological response to a threatening environment. The survival instinct explains how once “good” colleagues and friends can suddenly turn on the victim, unleashing a primal response aimed at the complete elimination of the threat from the workplace.

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