Trait activation in commitment to difficult goals: the role of achievement striving and situational cues

Aksoy, Eda and Bayazıt, Mahmut (2021) Trait activation in commitment to difficult goals: the role of achievement striving and situational cues. Applied Psychology . ISSN 0269-994X (Print) 1464-0597 (Online) Published Online First

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The current study utilized trait activation theory (TAT) (Tett & Burnett, 2003; Tett et al., 2013) to explain how the salience of goal-relevant performance-oriented social (i.e., manager's transformational leadership and peer performance norms) and organizational cues (i.e., reward expectancy) release or constrain employees' achievement striving (AS) personality trait and regulate the commitment to assigned difficult work goals. We also examined the effects of discretionary cues (signified by psychological empowerment) as trait activators. Hypotheses were tested using survey data collected from 297 managers employed in six large firms operating under a large Turkish family business group and using a common management-by-objectives system. In line with our predictions, when goals were perceived to be difficult, the associations between situational cues and goal commitment were inverse for employees with high versus low AS. When goal difficulty was high, performance-oriented situational cues were generally positively related to goal commitment for employees with high AS, but the relationships were negative for those with low AS. The results also showed that, for commitment to difficult goals, psychological empowerment activated the expression of high and low AS in a similar manner. Overall, the findings challenge the prevailing universalistic approaches to goal motivation.
Item Type: Article
Divisions: Sabancı Business School
Depositing User: Mahmut Bayazıt
Date Deposited: 26 Aug 2022 09:10
Last Modified: 26 Aug 2022 09:10

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