Bankers closing idiosyncratic deals: Implications for organisational cynicism

Manuela Morf, Arnold B. Bakker, Anja Feierabend

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


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.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)585-599
Number of pages15
JournalHuman Resource Management Journal
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • employee voice
  • individualised HRM practices
  • job design
  • leadership
  • negotiation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management


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