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Self-control is an important component of organizational life, with organizational members constantly needing to exert self-control to overcome their desires and achieve long-term goals. Attesting to this importance, much research has focused on why individuals lose self-control and the consequences of self-control failure for individuals and organizations. Unfortunately, this research has overly focused on one component of self-control - resource depletion perspectives (and ego depletion perspectives in particular) - while neglecting other components that play equally important roles in the self-control process. As such, we argue that the organizational literature has failed to appreciate the broader picture of what components are involved in the self-control process, and the extent to which these components are intertwined with organizational phenomenon. We address these issues by using an integrative self-control theory framework to review the management self-control literature, outlining seven components of self-control within three broad phases of the self-control process (activation, exertion, and enactment). This framework integrates the relevant literature into a larger self-control process model, and highlights concerns with existing depletion perspectives as well as the lack of attention paid to other components in the self-control process. We discuss the implications of these issues for future research on self-control.
- Received September 30, 2015.
- Revision received February 26, 2017.
- Accepted February 27, 2017.