Original Research

Thinking of change in terms of gains or losses Promotion versus prevention focus as a moderator in the job demands-resources model

Paraskevas Petrou, Evangelia Demerouti
SA Journal of Industrial Psychology | Vol 36, No 2 | a943 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajip.v36i2.943 | © 2010 Paraskevas Petrou, Evangelia Demerouti | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 16 November 2010 | Published: 08 December 2010

About the author(s)

Paraskevas Petrou, Utrect University, Netherlands
Evangelia Demerouti, Eindhoven University of Technology, Netherlands


Orientation: Promotion and prevention regulatory foci have been established as self-regulation systems with implications for the study of change.

Research purpose: The study aimed to test moderating effects of promotion and prevention focus within the job demands-resources model in a context of organisational change. Predictors included job demands and resources whilst outcomes included emotional exhaustion, disengagement and openness to change.

Motivation for the study: The study intended to understand whether individual differences in promotion and prevention focus play an important role during the experience of organisational change.

Research design, approach and method: A sample of 164 teachers from the Netherlands participated in a quantitative survey design before a new governmental policy was implemented in their schools and 189 different teachers working in the same schools participated in the survey after the implementation of the policy. Cross-sectional moderated regression analyses were used to analyse the data.

Main findings: Promotion focus moderated the relationship between job demands and openness to change, whilst both promotion and prevention focus moderated many of the relationships between job resources on the one hand and emotional exhaustion, disengagement and openness to change on the other hand.

Practical/managerial implications: Knowing that organisational change can have different meanings for promotion and prevention focused employees, managers can facilitate employee adaptation to change.

Contribution/value-add: This research provides a theoretical framework that incorporates self-regulation as a moderator in the job demands-resources model. At the same time, implications for organisational change were co-examined.


job characteristics; self-regulation; organisational change; burnout; openness to change


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