To better meet flexibility demands and increase person–job fit, organisations might offer their employees the opportunity to negotiate task-related arrangements, namely, idiosyncratic deals, referred to as “i-deals.” However, not every employee who requests an i-deal is successful in their negotiations. Thus, this study aims to further the knowledge of potential shortcomings of task-related i-deals and the role of supervisors in determining them. Drawing on social exchange theory, we hypothesise that low-quality supervisor–employee relationships (i.e., leader–member exchange) are more likely to result in unsuccessful task-related i-deal negotiations, which consequently might provoke increased organisational cynicism. We analysed three waves of data from 202 Swiss bankers who had requested task-related i-deals within the investigated business cycle. The results supported our hypothesis. Our findings highlight the role of supervisors in reducing the potential costs of using task-related i-deals as employee-initiated job design practices.

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Keywords employee voice, individualised HRM practices, job design, leadership, negotiation
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Journal Human Resource Management Journal
Morf, M. (Manuela), Bakker, A.B. (Arnold B.), & Feierabend, A. (Anja). (2019). Bankers closing idiosyncratic deals: Implications for organisational cynicism. Human Resource Management Journal. doi:10.1111/1748-8583.12245