College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award

Spring 6-10-2022

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Alice Stuhlmacher, PhD

Second Advisor

Jane Halpert, PhD

Third Advisor

Kimberly Quinn, PhD


A key predictor of employee performance and effective coaching interactions, coachability is defined as an individual’s willingness and ability to seek, be receptive to, and act on constructive feedback from others (Weiss & Merrigan, 2021). As such, it was predicted that there are certain social-psychological phenomena that impact one’s coachability. One phenomenon, social identity threat, referring to a threat to the self-aspect derived from membership in a particular social group or category (Steele et al., 2002; Tajfel & Turner, 2004), was used to explain the link between certain contextual and individual variables and employee coachability behaviors. Specifically, it was predicted that the contextual variables of trust in supervisor and psychological safety positively relate to employee coachability behaviors through decreased social identity threat. The individual level variable of stigma consciousness was predicted to negatively relate to employee coachability behaviors through increased social identity threat. Further, these relationships were expected to be stronger for racial-ethnic minorities

given the high stigmatization and unique experiences associated with membership in a minority group (Crocker et al., 1998). Data collected from a management consultancy firm was tested through structural equation modeling. Results indicated a significant, positive effect of psychological safety on employee coachability behaviors and non-significant effects of trust in supervisor, stigma consciousness, and social identity threat on employee coachability behaviors. No significant differences in social identity threat were found across racial-ethnic minority group members and Whites (i.e., racial-ethnic majority group members). Finding implications as well as future research directions are discussed.

SLP Collection