Title

What happens when you trust your supervisor? Mediators of individual performance in trust relationships

Publication Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

1-2013

Abstract

To understand how trust in supervisor translates into individual job performance, we hypothesize that trust in supervisor facilitates positive psychological conditions of meaningfulness, safety, and availability, which in turn predict individual job performance. We assert that each of the three mediating paths in our model represents a distinct mechanism by which trust in supervisor contributes to individual job performance. We test our hypotheses with 206 supervisor–subordinate dyads and find that trust in supervisor contributes to job performance through psychological availability and psychological safety but not psychological meaningfulness. By examining three different psychological mechanisms within the same frame, we provide a test that compares and contrasts the uniqueness of the three pathways. Our findings suggest practical ways for managers to build trust with subordinates and guidance for the design of productive work conditions.

Keywords

trust, psychological conditions, job performance, work motivation, supervisor–subordinate relationship

Discipline

Organizational Behavior and Theory

Research Areas

Organisational Behaviour and Human Resources

Publication

Journal of Organizational Behavior

Volume

34

Issue

3

First Page

407

Last Page

425

ISSN

0894-3796

Identifier

10.1002/job.1812

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