Interactions of Approach and Avoidance Job Crafting and Work Engagement: A Comparison between Employees Affected and Not Affected by Organizational Changes

in International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 17 (23)

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

2020 | En anglais

Job crafting describes proactive employee behaviors to improve the design of their work and working conditions, and to adapt their job to better suit their abilities and needs. During organizational changes, employees may use job crafting to adjust to the changes in their work and protect their well-being and motivation, i.e., work engagement. However, research shows that although the effects of job crafting strategies that expand the design of work (approach job crafting) have been positive on work engagement, the effects of job crafting strategies that diminish the scope of work (avoidance job crafting) have often been negative. This study investigated the effects of the interactions between different job crafting strategies on work engagement, an aspect that has not thus far been studied. Specifically, we hypothesized that avoidance job crafting is not harmful for work engagement when it is conducted in combination with approach job crafting, particularly during times of organizational change. A two-wave, 18-month follow-up study was conducted among public sector workers who either experienced (n = 479) or did not experience (n = 412) changes in their work. Latent moderated structural equation modeling revealed that avoidance job crafting did not reduce work engagement when combined with approach job crafting behaviors. Moreover, job crafting best benefited work engagement when it was combined with these opposing strategies. However, job crafting was beneficial for work engagement only among employees who were affected by organizational changes, that is, among employees whose job design had changed. Practically, organizations implementing changes could encourage proactive job redesign approaches among their employees—particularly both approach and avoidance types of job crafting strategies.

Voir la revue «International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health»

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