Consumed by obsession: Career adaptability resources and the performance consequences of obsessive passion and harmonious passion for work
School of Business and Law
Does passion predict performance? Whereas harmonious passion is typically associated with strong performance, evidence for the obsessive passion-performance relationship has been so far inconclusive. The mixed results in the literature suggest that there are hitherto unexamined boundary conditions and mechanisms shaping the relationship between obsessive passion and performance. This study draws on principles from conservation of resources and the dual-systems model of self-regulation to explain how these two types of passion (obsessive and harmonious) relate to work performance. We examined career adaptability as a buffer that determines when and for whom obsessive passion precipitates emotional exhaustion as well as when and for whom emotional exhaustion diminishes work performance. This proposed moderated mediation model was tested in two multisource samples in corporate (N = 139 employee-supervisor dyads) and healthcare sectors (N = 156 time-lagged employee-peer dyads) respectively. We observed support for the proposed model in both samples. Career adaptability prevents obsessively passionate workers from being consumed by obsession.