When managers believe technological ability is fixed. By: Solberg, Elizabeth; Adamska, Katarzyna; Wong, Sut I and Traavik, Laura E. M. 2024. Human Resource Management Journal. Vol. 34 Issue 2, p437-454.

Drawing from mindset theory, we predict that managers’ fixed mindset about technological ability (FM‐TA) will negatively influence the developmental support they provide to their employees and, in turn, their employees’ engagement in digitalisation initiatives. Further, we predict that managers’ FM‐TA will have a disproportionate negative influence on female employees for whom negative stereotypes about technological ability exist. We test our hypotheses with two‐wave field study data collected from 88 managers and 185 employees working in a Nordic banking institution. We find that managers’ FM‐TA relates negatively to their employees’ experienced developmental support, and, in turn, their employees’ efforts to approach new technology. Furthermore, our findings indicate that this negative, indirect relationship is more pronounced for female employees (estimate = −0.116, standard error [SE] = 0.052, p = 0.026) than male employees (estimate = −0.048, SE = 0.027, p = 0.071), although the interaction term (managers’ FM‐TA × employee gender) was not significant at the 95 percent confidence level (estimate = −0.266, SE = 0.0141, p = 0.058). Our study provides greater insight into the human resource management issues managers might have fostering employee engagement and inclusion in the digitalised workplace.