Current Research and Practice
Chapter 1: Work and Psychological Well-being
OVERVIEW The fact that work can directly influence the psychological health and well-being of workers has become a point of increasing interest over the last few decades. Associations between work and psychological well-being are firmly established. The occupational stress literature in particular has demonstrated a variety of causal relationships between working environments and well-being, with some of this evidence now entrenched in specific legislation (Chapter 5 focuses specifically on occupational stress). The various ways in which paid employment influences the well-being of workers are also generally discussed in each chapter throughout this book. This first chapter focuses on the specific perspectives that best describe psychological well-being, the common antecedents of well-being and the associations between well-being and job performance. DEFINITIONS OF PSYCHOLOGICAL WELL-BEING Psychological well-being can be defined by physical, emotional and psychological perspectives. Numerous antecedents of work-related well-being have been identified such as job characteristics, work design, ergonomics and psychosocial behaviours (communications and relationships between co-workers, harassment and bullying). Both individual and organizational consequences of poor well-being have also been identified and include adverse performance, attendance, decision-making, accidents and both physical and psychological employee ill health. Danna and Griffin (1999) provided a useful framework summarizing the common antecedents and consequences of occupational health and well-being (see Figure 1.1). Figure 1.1 depicts the core constructs of well-being as being satisfaction (life and job) and health (physical and psychological). The common workplace hazards and their impact on a worker’s physical health will be discussed in detail in the following chapter (Chapter...
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