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International Journal of Stress Management




Workflow interruptions are a pervasive job stressor detrimental to employee job performance and wellbeing. Previous studies noted that the detrimental effect was intervened by increased job demands (i.e., demand accumulation mechanism). Yet, little attention has been paid to employees’ stressor appraisal, a critical mechanism of stress process from transactional perspective. Moreover, we lack of knowledge about what malleable, action-based coping strategies can reduce the negative effect of workflow interruptions. To address these limitations, we collected data from a sample of IT professionals using a 5-day daily diary design. With 330 daily observations from 75 employees, the findings revealed that by controlling for the mediating effect of time pressure (i.e., demand accumulation mechanism), hindrance appraisal mediated the negative relationship between workflow interruptions and task performance as well as the positive relationship between workflow interruptions and psychological distress. More importantly, time-management skill was found to buffer the relationship between workflow interruptions and hindrance appraisal through which it further weakens the relationship of workflow interruptions with task performance and with psychological distress. Theoretical contributions and practical implications are discussed.


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©American Psychological Association, 2020. This paper is not the copy of record and may not exactly replicate the authoritative document published in the APA journal. Please do not copy or cite without author's permission. The final article is available, upon publication, at:



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