The curvilinear relationship between work pressure and momentary task performance: the role of state and trait core self-evaluations

Joeri Hofmans, Jonas Debusscher, Edina Doci, Andromachi Spanouli, Filip De Fruyt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

Whereas several studies have demonstrated that core self-evaluations (CSE)–or one’s appraisals about one’s own self-worth, capabilities, and competences–relate to job outcomes, less is known about the mechanisms underlying these relationships. In the present study, we address this issue by examining the role of within- and between-person variation in CSE in the relationship between work pressure and task performance. We hypothesized that (a) work pressure relates to task performance in a curvilinear way, (b) state CSE mediates the curvilinear relationship between work pressure and task performance, and (c) the relationship between work pressure and state CSE is moderated by trait CSE. Our hypotheses were tested via a 10-day daily diary study with 55 employees in which trait CSE was measured at baseline, while work pressure, task performance, and state CSE were assessed on a daily basis. Bayesian multilevel path analysis showed that work pressure affects task performance via state CSE, with state CSE increasing as long as the employee feels that (s)he is able to handle the work pressure, while it decreases when the level of work pressure exceeds the employees’ coping abilities. Moreover, we found that for people low on trait CSE, the depleting effect of work pressure via state CSE happens for low levels of work pressure, while for people high in trait CSE the depleting effect is located at high levels of work pressure. Together, our findings
Original languageEnglish
Article number1680
Number of pages12
JournalFrontiers in Psychology
Volume6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 28 Oct 2015
Externally publishedYes

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