Department of Management


Date of this Version



Published in The Journal of Applied Behavioral Science 44:1 (March 2008), pp. 48–70; doi 10.1177/0021886307311470 Copyright © 2008 NTL Institute; published by Sage Publications. Used by permission.


Although much attention has been devoted to understanding employee resistance to change, relatively little research examines the impact that positive employees can have on organizational change. To help fill this need, the authors investigate whether a process of employees’ positivity will have an impact on relevant attitudes and behaviors. Specifically, this study surveyed 132 employees from a broad cross-section of organizations and jobs and found: (a) Their psychological capital (a core factor consisting of hope, efficacy, optimism, and resilience) was related to their positive emotions that in turn were related to their attitudes (engagement and cynicism) and behaviors (organizational citizenship and deviance) relevant to organizational change; (b) mindfulness (i.e., heightened awareness) interacted with psychological capital in predicting positive emotions; and (c) positive emotions generally mediated the relationship between psychological capital and the attitudes and behaviors. The implications these findings have for positive organizational change conclude the article.