Social influence and perceived organizational support: A social networks analysis

Thomas J. Zagenczyk, Kristin D. Scott, Ray Gibney, Audrey J. Murrell, Jason Bennett Thatcher

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

96 Scopus citations


We suggest that employees' perceptions of organizational support (POS) are not solely a product of independent evaluations of treatment offered by the organization, but are also shaped by the social context. We argue that coworkers will directly (through inquiry via cohesive friendship and advice ties) and indirectly (through monitoring of employees structurally equivalent in advice and friendship networks) affect employees' perceived organizational support. Network studies in the admissions department of a large public university and a private company specializing in food and animal safety products indicate that employees' POS are similar to those of coworkers with whom they maintain advice relationships as well as to those who hold structurally equivalent positions in organizational friendship and advice networks. Our work contributes to organizational support theory by developing and testing a theoretical explanation for the relationship between the social context and perceptions of support among employees. Implications for research and practice are offered.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)127-138
Number of pages12
JournalOrganizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2010

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Applied Psychology
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management


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