Supportive supervisors improve employees' daily lives: the role supervisors play in the impact of daily workload on life satisfaction via work–family conflict

Zen Goh, Remus Ilies, Kelly Schwind Wilson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

54 Citations (Scopus)


This article presents a multilevel approach that uncovers how day-to-day variations in workload influence life satisfaction by creating work–family conflict, as well as the role supportive supervisors play in influencing these daily relationships. In this experience-sampling study, 135 employees responded to 2 daily surveys (one at work and one at home) for 5 days and a one-time post-study survey. With a total of 810 surveys, hierarchical linear modeling revealed that employees' daily perceived workload positively predicted daily work–family conflict, which in turn negatively predicted daily life satisfaction. Importantly, we found support for a cross-level interaction where supervisor work–family specific support (measured once in the post-study survey) negatively moderated the relationship between daily workload and work–family conflict, attesting the importance of supervisory support in reducing daily interference between work and family.
© 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)65-73
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Vocational Behavior
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Workload
  • Work-family conflict
  • Life satisfaction
  • Supervisor work-family specific support
  • Experience sampling methodology

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