Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Business Administration

First Advisor

Carter, Min Z.


The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19, i.e., C-19) pandemic promulgated psychological distress among employees across the United States, necessitating the examination of its consequential negative impact. By drawing upon conservation of resource and scarcity theory, this research develops a theoretical model that demonstrates how employees’ psychological distress triggered by the C-19 pandemic (C-19PD) sways their task performance, organizational citizenship behavior (OCB), and work withdrawal via work engagement. As first-stage moderators, I propose core self-evaluations (CSE), servant leadership, and perceived organizational support (POS) as moderators of the link between C-19PD and work engagement. As second-stage moderators, I propose task interdependence, constraints, and telecommuting intensity as moderators of the link between work engagement and task performance, OCB, and work withdrawal. An individual-level survey study was designed to gather a data set of 275 currently employed workers from four public universities in the U.S., and the mediation hypotheses were supported. However, the moderating effects of CSE, servant leadership, and POS (i.e., first stage moderators) and task interdependence, constraints, and telecommuting intensity (i.e., second stage moderators) were not supported. Implications for theory, limitations, future research directions, and practical applications are discussed.

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