Journal of Organizational Behavior

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Volume 40 Issue 3 (March 2019), Pages 231-385

Time‐based differences in the effects of positive and negative affectivity on perceived supervisor support and organizational commitment among newcomers (pages 264-281)

Summary Building on the broaden‐and‐build theory and research on the negativity bias, this study examines how trait affectivity, as a stable predisposition predicting the pattern of emotional responding, shapes newcomers' perceptions of supervisor support and experience of organizational commitment. Using latent growth modeling and data collected at four points in time from newcomers (N = 158), we found the initial level of perceived supervisor support to mediate a negative relationship between negative affectivity and the level of commitment. Moreover, although newcomers experienced a general decrease in perceived supervisor support and a related decrease in commitment, those with high positive affectivity experienced a weaker decrease in perceived supervisor support, which led to a weaker decrease in commitment. Incidentally, positive affectivity was also positively related to the initial level of commitment. Two post hoc studies indicated that positive and negative affectivity exerted their effects controlling for state affect and replicated the relationship between change in perceived support and commitment. We discuss how these findings inform our understanding of trait affectivity's influence on newcomers' work attitudes.

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