We develop theory that distinguishes trust among employees in typical task contexts (marked by low levels of situational unpredictability and danger) from trust in "high-reliability" task contexts (those marked by high levels of situational unpredictability and danger). A study of firefighters showed that trust in high-reliability task contexts was based on coworkers' integrity, whereas trust in typical task contexts was also based on benevolence and identification. Trust in high-reliability contexts predicted physical symptoms, whereas trust in typical contexts predicted withdrawal. Job demands moderated linkages with performance: trust in high-reliability task contexts was a more positive predictor of performance when unpredictable and dangerous calls were more frequent.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Business and International Management
- Business, Management and Accounting(all)
- Strategy and Management
- Management of Technology and Innovation