The objective of this study was to test the relationship between empowering leadership and job crafting and to examine the moderating role of optimism as a personal resource. We hypothesized that the association between empowering leadership and job crafting would be stronger for employees with high (vs. low) levels of optimism. A total of 331 Norwegian workers from a variety of occupations participated in our study. Results of structural equation modelling analysis generally supported our hypotheses. Empowering leadership was positively related to 3 of the 4 job crafting strategies investigated (increasing structural job resources, increasing social job resources, and increasing challenging job demands; but not reducing hindrance job demands). Moreover, as hypothesized, optimism strengthened the empowering leadership–job crafting relationship for increasing structural resources and increasing challenging demands. The results suggest that empowering leadership is an important antecedent of job crafting strategies, except for reducing hindrance demands. The implications of these findings are discussed.

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Keywords empowering leadership, JD–R theory, job crafting, optimism, personal resources
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Journal Stress and Health
Thun, S. (Sylvi), & Bakker, A.B. (2018). Empowering leadership and job crafting: The role of employee optimism. Stress and Health, 34(4), 573–581. doi:10.1002/smi.2818