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Antecedents and Outcomes of Downwards Trust in Organisations

ZHENG, XIAOTONG (2018) Antecedents and Outcomes of Downwards Trust in Organisations. Doctoral thesis, Durham University.

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The crucial role of trust in organisations has been demonstrated by previous trust research. This thesis attempts to shed light on a new perspective on our understanding of trust relationships in organisations by investigating downward trust from two perspectives – that of the leaders’ and of the followers’– to paint a complete picture. This thesis investigates different antecedents and outcomes of downward trust. In respect of antecedents of supervisors’ trust in the follower, two sets of antecedents are proposed – a set of general antecedents, ability, benevolence and integrity (ABI) and another set of specific ones, availability and receptivity. The general antecedents were found to be stronger predictors than the specific ones. A person-oriented approach was adopted along with a variable-oriented approach. On the basis of their pattern of scores across the trustworthiness variables, five categories of followers were identified, which were trustworthy, trustable, capable, well-meaning and untrustworthy followers. The patterns predicted leaders’ trust in followers and their ratings on follower job performance. Regarding employee felt trust, perceived justice and delegation were found to influence their perceptions of being trusted. Employee occupational self-efficacy was found to mediate the relationship between employee felt trust and job performance. The interaction between downward trust and upward trust was also considered by examining the (in)congruence between downward trust (follower felt trust) and upward trust (trust in leaders) using an empirical technique – response surface analysis. In general, follower occupational self-efficacy and job performance were found to be enhanced when the congruence was at a high trust level, also when downward trust was higher than upward trust, if they were incongruent.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Philosophy
Keywords:Trust, felt trust, organisational justice, occupational self-efficacy, job performance, structural equation modelling, person-oriented, response surface analysis
Faculty and Department:Faculty of Social Sciences and Health > Economics, Finance and Business, School of
Thesis Date:2018
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:24 Apr 2018 11:10

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