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How the exchange relationship affects employee commitment: The mediating role of organizational trust

Y. Serkan Ozmen (Department of Accounting and Tax Applications, Izmir University of Economics, Izmir, Turkey)

Journal of Management Development

ISSN: 0262-1711

Article publication date: 12 July 2019




The purpose of this paper is to analyze the impact of social and economic exchange relationships on organizational commitment in line with the mediation effect of organizational trust.


In order to test the hypotheses of the study, a survey was conducted on a sample of 213 employees who were working at manufacturing companies in Turkey.


The findings of the study reveal that both dimensions of the exchange relationship positively affect organizational commitment and these links are mediated by organizational trust.

Research limitations/implications

The study provides reliable scales to measure the social and economic exchange relationship between employees and employing organizations. Although the sample of the study was relatively small and drawn from a single country, the Cronbach’s α values of scales were obtained above the recommended threshold value.

Practical implications

Organizational leaders might adopt an exchange perspective to build a trustworthy relationship with their employees. Developing such a mindset is very important at an employment structure, which has become highly flexible and contingent during the last decades.


The study attempts to distinguish the twofold nature of the exchange relationship in organizations based on a theoretical model to reveal the impact of each dimension on organizational level outcomes in conjunction with the mediating role of trust. In doing so, the study contributes to the literature by incorporating social and economic exchange in a holistic view as well as defining each dimension in a broader sense by including some employee-related challenges of business organizations such as diversity, social responsibility, leadership, ethical culture and so on.



Ozmen, Y.S. (2019), "How the exchange relationship affects employee commitment: The mediating role of organizational trust", Journal of Management Development, Vol. 38 No. 6, pp. 501-516.



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