Psychological contract breach in the anticipatory stage of change: employee responses and the moderating role of supervisory informational justice
De Ruiter, Melanie
Van Gelder, Daniel
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This study examined the impact of two types of psychological contract breach (organizational policies and social atmosphere breach) on resistance to change and engagement in the anticipatory phase of change and assessed whether supervisory informational justice mitigated the negative effects of breach. Employees from three departments of a Dutch financial institution (n = 141) who were in the first phase of a change initiative participated in the study. Results showed that social atmosphere breach was positively related to affective resistance to change and negatively related to engagement, while organizational policies breach was positively related to cognitive resistance to change. These findings point to the importance of distinguishing between different types of psychological contract breach. In addition, it was found that supervisory informational justice mitigated the adverse effect of social atmosphere breach on cognitive resistance to change, pointing to the important role of managers in the first phase of change.