Career construction in social exchange: A dual-path model linking career adaptability to turnover intention

Fei ZHU, Zijun CAI, Emma Ellen Kathrina BUCHTEL, Yanjun GUAN

Research output: Contribution to journalArticles

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Although the negative relationship between career adaptability and turnover intention has been established in previous research, understanding of the mechanisms and boundary conditions is still incomplete. In this study we attempt to address this gap by developing a dual-path moderated mediation model based on career construction theory, social exchange theory and trait activation theory. Specifically, we propose two mediators - career satisfaction and perceived organizational support (POS) - to explain the negative effect of career adaptability on turnover intention. Moreover, following the trait activation perspective, we propose that organizational brands, including symbolic and instrumental brands, could separately moderate these two mediation paths. We collected multi-source data among a sample of 1013 employees and 200 HRs from 200 organizations in China to test these ideas. The results show that both career satisfaction and POS mediate the negative effect of career adaptability on turnover intention. Moreover, the mediation path through career satisfaction to turnover intention is stronger in companies with more favorable symbolic brands, and the mediation path through POS to turnover intention is stronger in companies with more favorable instrumental brands. The findings have important implications for both career construction research and organizational career management practices. Copyright © 2019 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)282-293
JournalJournal of Vocational Behavior
Volume112
Early online dateApr 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2019

Citation

Zhu, F., Cai, Z., Buchtel, E. E., & Guan, Y. (2019). Career construction in social exchange: A dual-path model linking career adaptability to turnover intention. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 112, 282-293. doi: 10.1016/j.jvb.2019.04.003

Keywords

  • Career adaptability
  • Turnover
  • Career construction theory
  • Social exchange theory

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