Examining the Effects of Horizontal Conflict in Regulatory Fit Theory in the Context of Performance Feedback
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This study extends Regulatory Fit Theory (Higgins, 2000) to examine horizontal regulatory fit (Scholer & Higgins, 2010) in the context of performance feedback. Participants completed the Regulatory Focus Questionnaire (Higgins et al., 2001) to measure their chronic motivational orientation, then worked on an adapted version of an in-basket task (Holmes & Hauenstein, 2012) across two sessions. Hypotheses predicted that compared to instances of non-fit, conditions of regulatory fit between chronic and situational and motivational orientations (Promotion vs. Prevention) would have a significantly greater impact on the following three outcomes: 1) Variety and Frequency of Feedback Use, 2) Feedback Recall, and 3) Attitudes toward both Feedback and the In-basket Task. Overall results supported this assertion. Participants in condition of regulatory fit engaged in a significantly greater variety of behaviors and did so more frequently than those in non-fit conditions. Additionally, participants in regulatory fit conditions had stronger positive attitudes toward feedback than those in non-fit conditions. Counter to previous research, regulatory fit did not have significant impact on feedback recall in the current study, nor did regulatory fit have a significant impact on the attitudes toward in-basket task.
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