Achievement goals and autonomy: How person-context interactions predict effective functioning and well-being during a career transition

Heike Heidemeier*, Bettina S. Wiese

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal article (peer-reviewed)Journal article

15 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study examined how achievement goals interact with autonomy to explain mastery of a challenging career transition. In a sample of women who were returning from maternity leave, we examined how autonomy interacted with achievement goals to explain two types of outcomes: effective functioning (i.e., self-rated work adjustment, coworker-rated work adjustment, and coworker-rated learning competence) and well-being at work (i.e., positive affect and life satisfaction). In a longitudinal design (249 employees), we found that achievement goals and autonomy had direct effects on successful return to work. Moreover, maladaptive motivational states hindered the effective use of workplace resources: Autonomy moderated the consequences associated with performance-prove and -avoidance goals. Among those who adopted performance-prove goals, autonomy improved work adjustment and learning. However, women who adopted performance-avoidance goals experienced a trade-off between effective functioning and well-being, when equipped with high autonomy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)18-31
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Occupational Health Psychology
Volume19
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2014
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Achievement goals
  • Autonomy
  • Person-context interactions
  • Well-being at work
  • Work adjustment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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