Purdue University Graduate School
4.20 MF thesis final.pdf (502.59 kB)

Employee and Supervisor (Mis)Matching IPT and Performance Management Consequences

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posted on 2022-07-12, 18:11 authored by Mya Carrine FindleyMya Carrine Findley

Although performance management (PM) is a common, vital system used in most organizations, both supervisors and employees have been routinely disappointed with PM experiences, despite extensive research. Recent studies have identified certain individual differences that impact PM effectiveness. Specifically, the inclination to believe that one’s core traits are either malleable (an incremental mindset; high IPT) or fixed (an entity mindset; low IPT), a concept called "implicit person theory" (IPT), predicts many important supervisor behaviors that subsequently influence employee’s behaviors and attitudes. Furthermore, there is substantial support indicating that employee IPT also predicts their own performance, behaviors, and attitudes. This research shows the many benefits of having ahigh IPTover a low IPT.In this study, Iexamined the matching or mismatching IPT between employees and their respective supervisors and whether this differentially predicts employee attitudes that relate to PM. Responses weregathered from 211 participants. In an initial survey, participants were asked to report their IPT and their perceptions of their supervisor’s IPT. Two days later, participants reportedtheir perceptions of procedural justice, satisfaction with PM, and motivation to improve performance. Employee perceptions of procedural justice and satisfaction were combined into a single measure measuring general affective reactionsto PM, after an exploratory factor analysisrevealed the two outcomes loaded onto a single factor. PROCESS Model 1 was used to examine the centralhypothesis. Ifound significant interactions of employee and supervisor IPT onmotivation and affective reactionsto PM. The relationship between employee IPT and motivation was positive and strongest when supervisors had ahigh IPT, and was positive but weaker when supervisors had a low IPT. Interestingly, the relationship between employee IPT and affective reactions was negative when supervisors had alow IPT, such that low IPTemployees reported better affective reactions to PM when they perceived theirsupervisorsto have a low IPTrather than a high IPT.This research contributes to the literature by demonstrating the nuances of how IPT predicts employee outcomes. Organizations can benefit from this research by increasing awareness of one’s IPT and implementing cultural changes alongside interventions to increase favorable outcomes.


Degree Type

  • Master of Science


  • Psychological Sciences

Campus location

  • Indianapolis

Advisor/Supervisor/Committee Chair

Jane Williams

Additional Committee Member 2

Margaret (Peggy) Stockdale

Additional Committee Member 3

Veronica Derricks

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