Wednesday WIP with Alycia Damp: New Insights into the Employee-Employer Relationship: Personality and the Psychological Contract

When and Where

Wednesday, March 06, 2019 12:00 pm to 1:00 pm


Alycia Damp


Abstract: Within the context of employee-employer relationships, the psychological contract reflects a relational bond between both parties. Psychological contracts are comprised of a set of reciprocal obligations that arise from explicit and implicit promises. Employer promises are significant to employees because they signal trust, reduce uncertainty, and promote positive affect, and promises are thought to be central to the psychological contract concept. However, recent empirical findings suggest they may only play a peripheral role, if any at all. Their lack of centrality is problematic considering promises are the relational feature that distinguishes the psychological contract construct from related ones such as employee expectations. As such, Part 1 of the present research aimed to re-examine the role of promises by identifying conditions in which promises might be more salient to employees based on their personalities. Part 2, which is the topic of this presentation, applies a novel approach to studying personality and psychological contracts by identifying those who promises matter the most to. Findings suggest that promises may not be important to everyone, but they are especially relevant to individuals with a maladaptive personality profile. The perceptions of promises were also found to influence employee performance. Implications will be discussed. 

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