The Crossover of Daily Work Engagement: Test of an Actor-Partner Interdependence Model

Arnold B. Bakker, Despoina Xanthopoulou

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

276 Citations (Scopus)


This study of 62 dyads of employees (N = 124) examined the crossover of work engagement-a positive, fulfilling, work-related state of mind that is characterized by vigor, dedication, and absorption. We hypothesized that work engagement crosses over from an employee (the actor) to his or her colleague (the partner) on a daily basis. The frequency of daily communication was expected to moderate the crossover of daily work engagement, which in turn would relate to colleagues' daily performance. Participants first filled in a general questionnaire and then completed a diary study over 5 consecutive workdays. The hypotheses were tested with multilevel analyses, using an actor-partner interdependence model. Results confirmed the crossover of daily work engagement, but only on days when employees within a dyad interacted more frequently than usual. Moreover, we found that actor's work engagement (particularly vigor), when frequently communicated, had a positive indirect relationship with partner's performance through partner's work engagement. Finally, results showed that actor's vigor was negatively related to partner's performance when communication was low. However, this negative effect was counteracted when mediated by the vigor of the partner.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1562-1571
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Applied Psychology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • actor-partner interdependence model
  • communication
  • crossover
  • diary study
  • work engagement

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology


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