Correlations of the "Work-Family Conflict" With Occupational Stress-A Cross-Sectional Study Among University Employees.
ABSTRACT: Background: The working conditions at universities and hospitals are reported to be stressful. Several national and international studies have investigated occupational stress in hospitals. However, scientific studies at colleges and universities addressing psycho-social stress factors and their potential consequences are scarce. In this context, the consequences and correlations of the factor of work-family conflict, in particular, are currently uninvestigated. The aim of our study was to assess data on psychosocial stress in the context of the compatibility of work and family. Methods: Data were gathered through a cross-sectional-study, N = 844 (55% female, 41% male), on university staff (42.3% scientists, 14.3% physicians, 19.4% employees in administration, and 19.3% employees in service). Participants filled out questionnaires to provide their personal data and details of their work and private life conditions. For this purpose, we used the Work-Family and Family-Work Conflict Scales, Effort-Reward Inventory and Overcommitment Scale (ERI, OC), Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-4), short-form Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI), and questions on their subjective health. Statistical analyses were performed using SPSS 22. Results: We found high levels of stress parameters in the total sample: extra work (83%), fixed-term work contracts (53%), overcommitment (OC, 26%), Effort-Reward Imbalance (18%, ERI Ratio > cut-off 0.715), work-family conflict (WFC, 35%), and family-work conflict (FWC, 39%). As hypothesized, we found significant correlations of both WFC and FWC with psychosocial work strain (ERI Ratio) as well as overcommitment (OC). Mental and somatic health parameters also had a significant positive correlation with WFC and FWC. Using a regression analysis (N = 844), we identified WFC as a predictor of burnout, while emotional exhaustion, extra work, and overcommitment could be identified as predictors of WFC and FWC. Discussion: The results of our study point toward deficits in the compatibility of work life and private life in the work fields of science, colleges, and universities. Furthermore, we found indicators that work-family conflicts (interrole conflicts) have an impact on mental and somatic health. These work-family conflicts should be targets for preventions and interventions with the aim of improving the work-life balance and mental and somatic wellbeing of employees.
Project description:The COVID-19 pandemic has dramatically affected everyone's daily life in one way or another, requiring a re-negotiation of existing strategies for work-life integration, not only for individuals but also within families and partnerships. To contribute to existing knowledge on work-life integration during COVID-19 in Germany, we look at gender and parenthood differences in the experiences of work-to-family (WFC) and family-to-work (FWC) conflicts. By accounting for employees' previous conflict experiences, we were able to reveal the extent to which the current conditions contributed to differences in these conflicts. Moreover, we explored the relevance of demands and resources in the family and work spheres as a way to explain different levels of WFC and FWC across gender and parenthood. Our analyses are based on a sample of 660 employees from a German linked employer-employee panel study and a COVID-19 follow-up survey conducted in late 2020. Results revealed that work-family conflict experiences before the pandemic play an important role in current conflict perceptions. Whereas WFC were more likely to be accentuated during the pandemic, prior FWC experiences may have helped to mitigate conflicts under these new conditions. Work-family conflicts in general have increased during the COVID-19 pandemic, but this finding applied only to conflicts in the family-to-work direction. Although such increases were not limited to parents, they were particularly high in this group. Overall, gender differences in work-family conflicts were absent, but differences were found between mothers and fathers. The need to compensate for a lack of external childcare, as well as having to work from home, increased FWC, especially among fathers. This study suggests that FWC in particular became more important during the pandemic; however, parents were not the only ones who were disadvantaged when it came to work-life integration; childless individuals likewise struggled to balance the demands of work and private life.
Project description:BACKGROUND: This paper reports on results of a newly developed questionnaire for the assessment of effort-reward imbalance (ERI) in unpaid household and family work. METHODS: Using a cross-sectional population-based survey of German mothers (n = 3129) the dimensional structure of the theoretical ERI model was validated by means of Confirmatory Factor Analysis (CFA). Analyses of Variance were computed to examine relationships between ERI and social factors and health outcomes. RESULTS: CFA revealed good psychometric properties indicating that the subscale 'effort' is based on one latent factor and the subscale 'reward' is composed of four dimensions: 'intrinsic value of family and household work', 'societal esteem', 'recognition from the partner', and 'affection from the child(ren)'. About 19.3% of mothers perceived lack of reciprocity and 23.8% showed high rates of overcommitment in terms of inability to withdraw from household and family obligations. Socially disadvantaged mothers were at higher risk of ERI, in particular with respect to the perception of low societal esteem. Gender inequality in the division of household and family work and work-family conflict accounted most for ERI in household and family work. Analogous to ERI in paid work we could demonstrate that ERI affects self-rated health, somatic complaints, mental health and, to some extent, hypertension. CONCLUSIONS: The newly developed questionnaire demonstrates satisfied validity and promising results for extending the ERI model to household and family work.
Project description:Work-family conflicts are common and consequential for employees, their families, and work organizations. Can workplaces be changed to reduce work-family conflict? Previous research has not been able to assess whether workplace policies or initiatives succeed in reducing work-family conflict or increasing work-family fit. Using longitudinal data collected from 608 employees of a white-collar organization before and after a workplace initiative was implemented, we investigate whether the initiative affects work-family conflict and fit, whether schedule control mediates these effects, and whether work demands, including long hours, moderate the initiative's effects on work-family outcomes. Analyses clearly demonstrate that the workplace initiative positively affects the work-family interface, primarily by increasing employees' schedule control. This study points to the importance of schedule control for our understanding of job quality and for management policies and practices.
Project description:OBJECTIVES:To measure levels of occupational stress, burn-out, work-life balance, presenteeism, work ability (balance between work and personal resources) and desire to practise in trainee and consultant hospital doctors in Ireland. DESIGN:National cross-sectional study of randomised sample of hospital doctors. Participants provided sociodemographic data (age, sex), work grade (consultant, higher/basic specialist trainee), specialty, work hours and completed workplace well-being questionnaires (Effort-Reward Imbalance (ERI) Scale, overcommitment, Maslach Burnout Inventory) and single item measures of work ability, presenteeism, work-life balance and desire to practise. SETTING:Irish publicly funded hospitals and residential institutions. PARTICIPANTS:1749 doctors (response rate of 55%). All hospital specialties were represented except radiology. RESULTS:29% of respondents had insufficient work ability and there was no sex, age or grade difference. 70.6% reported strong or very strong desire to practise medicine, 22% reported good work-life balance, 82% experienced workplace stress, with effort greatly exceeding reward, exacerbated by overcommitment. Burn-out was evident in 29.7% and was significantly associated with male sex, younger age, lower years of practice, lower desire to practise, lower work ability, higher ERI ratio and greater overcommitment. Apart from the measures of work ability and overcommitment, there was no sex or age difference across any variable. However, ERI and burn-out were significantly lower in consultants than trainees. CONCLUSIONS:Hospital doctors across all grades in Ireland had insufficient work ability, low levels of work-life balance, high levels of work stress and almost one-third experienced burn-out indicating suboptimal work conditions and environment. Yet, most had high desire to practise medicine. Measurement of these indices should become a quality indicator for hospitals and research should focus on the efficacy of a range of individual and organisational interventions for burn-out and occupational stress.
Project description:<h4>Objectives</h4>The mediating effect of work-to-family conflict (WFC) on the associations between eight types of job stressors (measured based on the job demands-control, effort-reward imbalance and organisational justice models) and psychological distress in employees was examined.<h4>Design</h4>This study employed a prospective design.<h4>Setting</h4>An occupational cohort study in Japan (Japanese Study of Health, Occupation, and Psychosocial Factors Related Equity; J-HOPE).<h4>Participants</h4>5859 men and 1560 women who were working for 11 firms and participated at three consecutive waves of J-HOPE, at 1-year intervals, from 2010 to 2013.<h4>Main outcome measures</h4>Psychological distress, as measured by Kessler 6 scores.<h4>Results</h4>Mediation analysis using data on job stressors at baseline, WFC at 1-year follow-up and psychological distress at 2-year follow-up showed that WFC mediated 39.1% (95% CI 29.1% to 49.1%) and 44.5% (95% CI 31.4% to 51.7%) of the associations of psychological distress with job demands and effort, respectively, for men. The mediating effect of WFC was smaller for job stressors indicating reduced job resources, compared with job demands and effort. The mediating effect of WFC was somewhat larger for women than it was for men, with WFC mediating 47.5% (95% CI 22.5% to 72.6%) and 64.0% (95% CI 24.3% to 100.0%) of the associations of psychological distress with job demands and effort, respectively.<h4>Conclusions</h4>WFC was a key mediator in the associations between most job stressors and employee psychological distress. Results suggest that policy measures and support from supervisors, to prevent job stressors from adding to WFC, are needed to reduce employee psychological distress.
Project description:High level of work-family conflict (WFC) is an important risk factor for stress-related health outcomes. However, many studies are cross-sectional studies. In this study, we aimed to clarify how changes in WFC levels over a period 5?yr can affect workers' mental and physical health, and to clarify whether there are gender differences of them. This study examined 1,808 civil servants (1,258 men and 550 women) aged 20-65?yr working in a local government in the west coast of Japan from 2003 to 2008. Logistic regression analyses were used to examine whether the change in WFC contributes to workers' health problems and whether there are gender differences. This study revealed association sustained high WFC and deterioration of WFC conflict with poor mental health and poor job satisfaction for both men and women. In men high WFC conflict and deterioration was associated with poor mental health (OR=2.74). On the other hand, women had strong relationship between WFC changes and poor physical health (OR=2.64). WFC was an important factor as a social determinant of health of Japanese civil servants, and the change in WFC affects subsequent health problems with different trends in men and women.
Project description:The work-family interface is a compelling topic that calls into question labor market dynamics and work processes, together with important social and family composition changes. The present study aimed at examining the antecedents of Work-Family Balance (WFB) in Italy consistent with Greenhaus and Allen's (2011) conceptual model in which the characteristics of work and family roles have an indirect impact on work-family balance through Work-Family Conflict (WFC) and Work-Family Enrichment (WFE), and where job and family satisfaction are considered as predictors of WFB. A total of 568 workers participated in a time-lagged correlational study, filling a questionnaire. The theoretical model was tested by assessing the mediating role of job and family satisfaction as well as related antecedents, conflict, and enrichment between the family and work contexts, through Structural Equation Modeling (SEM). The results partially confirmed the theoretical model: work-to-family enrichment and work-to-family conflict predicted family satisfaction, which also mediated their association with WFB. The results in the family-to-work direction did not support the initial research hypotheses. The hypotheses about associations between demands and resources, conflict and enrichment in both directions, and of the moderating role of core self-evaluations were partially confirmed. The results highlighted that organizations need to carry out periodic assessments of WFC and WFE, in order to provide benefits and resources, to reduce conflict, and increase enrichment, through proper interventions (training activities, professional development, mentoring, and forms of flexibility).
Project description:Short- and medium-term effectiveness (up to 3 years) of individual level stress management interventions (SMI) at work were demonstrated, yet long-term effectiveness remains unexplored. We therefore aimed to address this research gap.94 male middle managers participated in a randomized wait-list controlled trial between 2006 and 2008 and in a post-trial-follow-up survey in 2015. During the first two years, all received an 18-hour psychotherapeutic SMI intervention which was based on the Effort-Reward Imbalance (ERI) model: tackling stressor on mismatch between effort and reward and promoting recovery on overcommitment. Work stress (i.e., ERI indicators) was the primary outcome, and the secondary outcome was depressive symptoms. The long-term effectiveness of the SMI was examined by mixed modeling, using an external control group (n = 94).Effort and reward were substantially improved with significant intervention ? time interaction effects (p < 0.001) compared to the external control group; effects on overcommitment and depressive symptoms were also significant (p < 0.05 and p < 0.01, resp.), though their trajectories in the intervention group were less sustainable.The effectiveness of this psychotherapeutic SMI at work based on the ERI model was observed over a 9-year period, particularly on the effort-reward ratio.
Project description:The increasing labor market participation of women in Europe leads to many women and men having to reconcile paid work with family work and thus reporting work-family conflict (WFC). WFC is related to different dimensions of health. In the present article, we analyzed the role different reconciliation policies among European countries may play regarding WFC and its association with self-reported health. The analyses are based on data from Eurofound's European Working Conditions Survey 2015. The working populations from 23 European countries aged between 18 and 59 with at least one child up to 18 years of age are included (n?=?10,273). Weighted logistic regression was applied to estimate the association between WFC and self-reported general health (SRH). Using multilevel models, country-level variations in the association of individual-level WFC and health were calculated. In a second step, the effect of country-level reconciliation policies on WFC was examined (adjusted for age, sociodemographic and occupational characteristics). The odds ratio for moderate to very poor SRH is 2.5 (95% CI: 1.92-3.34) for mothers with high WFC compared to mothers with low WFC. For fathers with high WFC, the adjusted odds ratio is also 2.5 (95% CI: 1.80-3.37). Between countries, the association between WFC and health is similar. Country-level parental leave policies, the use of formal childcare and mothers' labor market participation are associated with reduced WFC in Europe. In conclusion, the results reveal a strong association between WFC and SRH in Europe. The multilevel analyses show that certain reconciliation policies have an impact on the prevalence of WFC, with different results for mothers and fathers. Mothers in particular can be supported by sufficient maternal leave and formal care for children. These are tangible policy approaches for reducing WFC and may thus improve health in Europe.
Project description:Guilt refers to an unpleasant emotional state associated with one's behaviors, thoughts, or intentions, and it is based on the possibility that one may be in the wrong or that others may have this perception. Parental guilt is one common subtype and is often associated with work-family conflict (WFC). WFC and related guilt have been found to be associated with depression and anxiety. Through an online anonymous survey, the current study was designed to explore dog owners' guilt surrounding their dogs. Results suggest that dog owners' guilt and WFC associated with their dog are at levels similar to those reported in human family studies. Additionally, the relationship between dog owners' guilt and discrepancy between participants' actual and ideal self, in regard to the role of a dog owner, also mirrored human-only family research. Because pet-related guilt is unrecognized, acknowledged, or supported, we suggest it is disenfranchised. As people return to work, in this period of post-COVID-19 pandemic time, it is paramount that companies and communities acknowledge pet owner guilt and WFC and help owners find practical, effective solutions.