Purpose: The purpose of this study is to apply reciprocity theory to understand how hypothetical work location decision outcomes and individual differences affect employees’ trust in their employer and willingness to engage in organizational citizenship behaviors (OCBs). Design/methodology/approach: Three vignettes were used to manipulate work location decision outcomes and hypotheses were tested using Hayes’ (2008) PROCESS in a sample of 378 adults who worked in the USA during the first six months of the COVID-19 pandemic. Findings: Participants reported greater OCB intentions through higher trust in the employer when given their hypothetical choice of work location compared to being assigned one, and when assigned to their preferred compared to nonpreferred location. External work locus of control (EWLC) moderated the effects of work location on trust in the employer. The relationship between trust and OCB intentions was weakened when employees perceived greater difficulty in leaving their jobs. Originality/value: This study examined the roles of felt reciprocity, individual differences, choice and hypothetically receiving one’s preferred work location, on trust in the employer and willingness to engage in OCBs during the COVID-19 pandemic.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Business and International Management
- Strategy and Management
- Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management