Leader power, power stability, and interpersonal trust

Marlon Mooijman*, Wilco W. van Dijk, Eric van Dijk, Naomi Ellemers

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


We examine the conditions under which power decreases trust and the process by which this occurs. Three experiments and a field study revealed that occupying an unstable power position decreases trust as it raises power holders’ concerns about losing power. We replicate this finding across studies differing in measures and design, using different samples, and using different measurements and manipulations of power, power stability, and trust. We discuss the organizational and theoretical implications of this work for current insights on power and trust.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-10
Number of pages10
JournalOrganizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes
StatePublished - May 2019


  • Distrust
  • Power
  • Power-loss concerns

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management


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