Abusive Supervision and Organizational Resilience: The Role of Employees’ Psychological Capital





Abusive supervision, Employee psychological capital, Organizational resilience, Small and medium sized enterprises, Kenya


Crises present important opportunities to study leadership. While previous research has established that abusive supervision occurs more frequently during a crisis, its effect on organizational resilience has not been studied. Micro-level mechanisms through which abusive supervision affects organizational resilience are also largely missing from prior studies. The aim of the present research was to investigate how abusive supervision relates to organizational resilience via employees’ psychological capital through the lens of the job-demands resources theory. Multi-level structural equation modelling using Stata version 18 was used to test a mediation model using a sample of 301 small and medium sized enterprises from Kenya.  Results revealed that abusive supervision erodes organizational resilience however employees' psychological capital offsets the negative effects of abusive supervision. Ultimately, this paper showed that psychological capital can aid in lessening the deleterious effects of abusive supervision in crisis.

Author Biographies

Faith Njaramba, Strathmore University, Nairobi, Kenya.

Faith Njaramba is a PhD in Business and Management candidate at Strathmore University, Kenya.

Prof. Daniel Skarlicki, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada.

Daniel Skarlicki is the Edgar F. Kaiser Professor of Organizational Behaviour at the Sauder
School of Business at the University of British Columbia.

Dr. John Olukuru, Strathmore University, Nairobi, Kenya.

Dr. John Olukuru is the head of data science and analytics at Strathmore University, Kenya.