An important yet understudied element of the stigma disclosure calculus is the response of individuals who are the recipients of stigmatizing information—individuals who are essentially on the front lines of disclosure. Stigma disclosure recipients (SDRs) have a profound influence on disclosers’ workplace experience, yet there is a minimal understanding of how SDRs manage their responses during disclosure encounters. This article contributes to stigma identity management and workplace diversity research by focusing on the antecedents and outcomes of SDRs’ responses in organizations. We apply a novel event systems perspective to disclosure events, which allows us to develop a generalizable framework to understand the psychological and behavioral responses of SDRs across different types of stigmas. Our framework offers a unique perspective on how disclosure events trigger stigma-induced identity threat, which underlies a range of SDRs’ hostile and supportive behaviors. Overall, we propose that these responses of SDRs have important implications for the perpetuation and dismantling of stigma in the workplace. We offer implications for research and practice.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Social Psychology
- Applied Psychology
- Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management