Welcome to read and comment our recent research piece on autonomy, job crafting, and leadership – Sut I Wong, Miha Škerlavaj and Matej Černe (2016): Build Coalitions to Fit: Autonomy Expectations, Competence Mobilization, and Job Crafting, Human Resource Management.
Job crafting offers several beneficial organizational outcomes, yet little is known about what makes employees engage in it. In particular, the role of leaders in influencing their subordinates to engage in job crafting has been insufficiently studied. Drawing on role theory, we suggest that the congruence of leader-subordinate autonomy expectations nurtures subordinates’ experiences of having their competences adequately utilized in their jobs. This experience, which involves the competence mobilization of their work roles, subsequently fosters subordinates’ engagement in job-crafting behavior. A two-stage field study of 145 leader-subordinate dyads using cross-level polynomial regression and response surface analysis supported the (in)congruence hypotheses. The results also demonstrated that subordinates’ perceived competence mobilization mediates the relationship between autonomy expectation (in)congruence and job crafting. In addition, leader coalition as a moderator strengthens the effect of perceived competence mobilization as a psychological condition for job crafting. Implications for practice and future research are discussed.