How asymmetrical task dependence and task interdependence interact: An individual level study into the effects on affective reactions

Simon De Jong, P. Matthijs Bal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)
6 Downloads (Pure)


Purpose – This study investigates whether research and practice on task design and work teams could benefit from a more nuanced perspective on task (inter)dependencies among team members. Prior research often overlooked that task interdependence captures the average exchange of resources, while asymmetrical task dependence captures the inequalities within an individual's work relationships. To date, no study on work teams has combined the two aspects.
Design/methodology/approach – Data was obtained from 262 individuals working in 67 work teams. Multilevel and bootstrapping analyses were used.
Findings – Drawing from interdependence theory and power-dependence theory it was argued, and subsequently found, that asymmetrical task dependence interacts with task interdependence, and affects the job satisfaction of individuals and their affective commitment to their team.
Implications – A key practical implication is that both asymmetrical task dependence and task interdependence should be taken into account when optimizing intra-team task dependencies, for instance when (re-)designing jobs or teams.
Originality/value – This study contributes to research on asymmetrical task dependence within work teams, by investigating a) its interaction with task interdependence, b) its effects on the affective reactions of workers, and c) its effects on the individual level of analysis.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1115 - 1132
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Managerial Psychology
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • Asymmetrical Task Dependence
  • Task Interdependence
  • Affective Commitment to the Team
  • Job Satisfaction
  • Interdependence Theory
  • Power-Dependence Theory
  • Quantitative Field Study
  • Task and Team Design

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