Social Interaction and the Perception of Job Characteristics in an Organization

James W. Dean, Daniel J. Brass

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


This research investigates the relationship between the extent of employees' social interaction and their perceptions of job characteristics. Employees' perceptions were compared with the perceptions of task characteristics made by an outside observer, whose perceptions were not subject to the same social influence processes. The results indicated that the perceptions of employees who were more central to communication networks, boundary-spanning employees, and employees close to the organization's boundaries were more similar to the perceptions of the outside observer. These results were interpreted as support for the hypothesis that increased social interaction leads to a convergence of perceptions, such that the perceptions are more similar to observable reality. The hypotheses and results are discussed in terms of social information-processing models and previous laboratory findings.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)571-582
Number of pages12
JournalHuman Relations
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1985

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • General Social Sciences
  • Strategy and Management
  • Management of Technology and Innovation


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