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Work Characteristics and Work Performance of Knowledge Workers: What Goes Hand in Hand?


  • Tomislav Hernaus

    () (Faculty of Economics and Business, University of Zagreb)

  • Josip Mikulić

    () (Faculty of Economics and Business, University of Zagreb)


The aim of the paper was to investigate the interplay among a wide range of work characteristics and knowledge workers’ performance outcomes. Specifically, we examined the nature of relationships between various task-, knowledge- and social characteristics of work design and both task and contextual performance. Using an adapted Work Design Questionnaire and applying PLS-SEM modelling technique, we analysed cross-sectional and cross-occupational sample of 512 Croatian knowledge workers from 48 organizations. Our findings confirmed the existence and importance of interaction between work characteristics and work outcomes. However, the results suggest that only knowledge characteristics of work design exhibit a significant effect on both distinct dimensions of work behaviour, while task and social characteristics showed different effects on task and contextual performance, respectively.

Suggested Citation

  • Tomislav Hernaus & Josip Mikulić, 2013. "Work Characteristics and Work Performance of Knowledge Workers: What Goes Hand in Hand?," EFZG Working Papers Series 1309, Faculty of Economics and Business, University of Zagreb.
  • Handle: RePEc:zag:wpaper:1309

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Hernaus Tomislav, 2011. "Business Trends and Tendencies in Organization Design and Work Design Practice: Identifying Cause-and-Effect Relationships," Business Systems Research, De Gruyter Open, vol. 2(1), pages 4-16, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. Ramona Diana LEON, 2015. "The Future Knowledge Worker: An Intercultural Perspective," Management Dynamics in the Knowledge Economy Journal, College of Management, National University of Political Studies and Public Administration, vol. 3(4), pages 675-691, December.

    More about this item


    work design; work characteristics; task performance; contextual performance; PLS-SEM;

    JEL classification:

    • M12 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Business Administration - - - Personnel Management; Executives; Executive Compensation
    • M50 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Personnel Economics - - - General
    • J81 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Standards - - - Working Conditions

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