Spillover of interpersonal conflicts from work into nonwork: A daily diary study

Inés Martinez-Corts, Evangelia Demerouti, Arnold B. Bakker, Marina Boz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

65 Citations (Scopus)


This study among a heterogeneous sample of employees expands the Job-Demands (JD-R) theory by examining how interpersonal conflicts at work-task and relationship conflict-spillover into the nonwork domain on a daily basis. We hypothesized that daily personal resources can buffer the daily negative spillover of interpersonal conflicts from work into the nonwork domain. A total of 113 employees (n = 565 occasions) filled in a daily diary questionnaire in the evening before bedtime over 5 consecutive working days. Results of multilevel analysis showed that the presence of daily personal resources is essential to buffer the spillover of interpersonal conflict at work to the nonwork domain. Specifically, on days that employees were not very optimistic or resilient, interpersonal conflicts resulted in higher strain-based work-life conflict experiences. These findings contribute to the JD-R theory and show how the unfavorable effects of daily interpersonal conflicts in the work domain may be avoided in the nonwork domain through enhancing personal resources. We discuss the implications for theory and practice.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)326-337
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Occupational Health Psychology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 19 Jan 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Diary study
  • Interpersonal conflict
  • Personal resources
  • Spillover
  • Work-nonwork conflict

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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