Article


An employee who was not there : Exploring job boredom in white-collar work


in Personnel Review, 45 (2)

par Harju, Lotta K. ; Hakanen, Jari J.

2016 - 374-391 p. | En anglais

Purpose Job boredom is an amotivational state at work, where employees lack interest in their work activities and have difficulties concentrating on them. Although recent research suggests that job boredom may concern a wide range of industries, studies investigating the experience and its emergence in white-collar work are scarce. Thereby the purpose of this paper is to contextualize job boredom by exploring the experience and its preconditions in white-collar work. Design/methodology/approach This inductive, exploratory study employed data from 13 focus group interviews (n=72) in four organizations to investigate the emergence and experience of job boredom. Findings Three types of job boredom was found. Each type involved distinct temporal experiences: inertia, acceleration and disrupted rhythm at work. The findings suggest that different types of job boredom involve specific conditions that hamper the activation of individual capabilities and disrupt temporal experience accordingly. Research limitations/implications Extending the conceptualization of job boredom may enable better understanding of the variety of consequences often associated with the phenomenon. Practical implications It is also important for organizations to recognize that there are different types and various preconditions of job boredom in white-collar work, as it may have a negative impact on employee well-being and performance. Originality/value The results indicate that job boredom is a more nuanced phenomenon than earlier believed. By identifying job boredom in white-collar work as an experience with various forms and respective preconditions, this study expands the understanding of the phenomenon and its emergence.

Voir la revue «Personnel Review»



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