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Acta Psychologica Sinica    2018, Vol. 50 Issue (4) : 450-461     DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2018.00450
 The impact of challenge stress and hindrance stress on employee creativity: The mediating role of self-efficacy and the moderating role of justice
 ZHANG Yong; LIU Haiquan; WANG Mingxuan; QING Ping
 (College of Economics and Management, Huazhong Agricultural University, Wuhan 430070, China)
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Abstract   Owing to their distinctive nature, challenge stress and hindrance stress may have different effects on individual creativity. Drawing on social cognitive theory perspective, we conducted a longitudinal empirical study concerning with the relationship between challenge stress and hindrance stress and employees’ self-efficacy and creativity. We also examined whether these relations were moderated by distributive justice and procedure justice. Data were collected from 256 dyads of employees and their immediate supervisors in two divisions of a large enterprise. The questionnaire for employee in Time 1 included challenge stress and hindrance stress, job complexity, and demography variables. The questionnaire for employee in Time 2 included self-efficacy. Employees’ creativity was rated by their immediate supervisors in Time 3. Theoretical hypotheses were tested by hierarchal regression analysis with Mplus 6.0. Results of analyzing the matched sample showed that the relationships between challenge stress and both self-efficacy and creativity were not significant, and the relationship between hindrance stress and both self-efficacy and creativity was negative; where distributive justice was high, challenge stress was positively related to creativity via self-efficacy, whereas where distributive justice was low, this indirect relationship was not significant. The moderating effects of procedure justice on the relationship between hindrance stress and both self-efficacy and creativity were not significant. Extending previous studies, this research demonstrated that challenge stress and hindrance stress have unique influences on self-efficacy and creativity, the results clarified the relationship between stress and creativity in workplace from a new perspective. Second, by examining the mediating effect of self-efficacy, the results contributed to our understanding on the mechanism through which stress influence creativity. Finally, through investigating the moderating effect of procedure justice and distributive justice, we confirmed that there are bounded conditions of the effect of stress on employee creativity. Findings broaden understandings of the process by which and the conditions under which challenge stress and hindrance stress influence creativity. Furthermore, the results also revealed that social cognitive theory was more suitable for explaining the relationship between stress and creativity.
Keywords creativity      challenge stress      hindrance stress      self-efficacy      distributive justice      procedure justice     
  B849: C93  
Corresponding Authors: ZHANG Yong, E-mail:     E-mail: E-mail:
Issue Date: 01 March 2018
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ZHANG Yong, LIU Haiquan, WANG Mingxuan, QING Ping.  The impact of challenge stress and hindrance stress on employee creativity: The mediating role of self-efficacy and the moderating role of justice[J]. Acta Psychologica Sinica,2018, 50(4): 450-461.
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