Relationships among Incremental Belief, Cognitive Flexibility, and Innovative Behavior

Inseong JEONG, Yaping GONG, Seyoung JU

Research output: Other Conference ContributionsAbstractpeer-review


Drawing upon trait-activation theory and incremental theory, we theorized and tested a moderated mediation model: incremental belief influences innovative behavior via cognitive flexibility, and empowering leadership moderates this mediation relationship. We also tested the relationship between innovative behavior and job performance and the moderating effect of empowering leadership on the relationship in knowledge intensive work. Using a sample of 308 Korean knowledge workers (i.e., R&D researcher, software developer, and production line manager etc.) in a knowledge intensive firm, we found that incremental belief was positively related to innovative behavior and empowering leadership strengthened this positive relationship. We also found that cognitive flexibility mediated the relationship between incremental belief and innovative behavior. Moreover, empowering leadership moderated this mediation relationship such that it is stronger when empowering leadership is stronger. Moreover, innovative behavior was positively associated with job performance and that this relationship was also stronger when empowering leadership was stronger. In this paper, we discussed the theoretical and practical implications.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2016
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Published in Academy of Management Proceedings, Vol. 2016, No. 1


  • empowering leadership
  • incremental belief
  • innovative behavior


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