Emotional Labor Effects on Job Satisfaction

Topics: Emotion, Psychology, Big Five personality traits Pages: 9 (2304 words) Published: February 17, 2013
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Emotional Labor Effects on Job Satisfaction and Employee Performance

PSY5002 Section: 04

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A study was conducted to examine the effects of emotional labor on the well-being of customer service employees. In the article, Emotional labor in service roles, BE Ashforth and RH Humphrey explain that over the past two decades emotional labor literature has investigated emotion control policies that employees must adhere to while interacting with customers and strategies that employees use to adhere to company expectations of emotional display (as cited in Hurst, Judge, & Woolf, 2009, p. 57). Participates of the study were used to test the differential effects of the strategies, deep and surface acting, on job satisfaction and emotional exhaustion with personality variables. The findings of this study along with two similar studies, testing emotional anguish and burnout of employees, suggest that both personality traits and organization expectations and resources play vital roles in employee well-being and job satisfaction.

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Emotional Labor Effects on Job Satisfaction
and Employee Performance

Increasing numbers of research studies are being conducted to examine where human emotion fits into organizations, due to job dissatisfaction, deteriorating job performance, and mental health of service workers. Psychosocial characteristics of workplaces that give rise to health related problems in workers such as emotional anguish, burnout, and depression are evaluated in these studies. A review, titled Burnout and Health by Leiter & Maslach, explained that “research has established that burnout is a stress phenomenon that shows the expected pattern of health correlates, such as headaches, gastrointestinal disorders, muscle tension, hypertension, cold/flu episodes, and sleep disturbances” (as cited in Leiter & Maslach, 2008, p. 499). Leiter & Maslach (2008) state that the workers internal experience of strain is assumed to play a mediating role between the impact of external job demands (stressors) and work-related outcomes (such as absenteeism and illness). Factors that include but are not limited to work conditions, effect the well-being of employees such as how they handle emotion at work. Maslach, C & Jackson, S.E. stated that “emotional exhaustion is the degree to which one’s emotional resources have been expanded, for multiple reasons” (as cited in Ducharme, Knudsen, & Roman, 2009, p. 85). This literature review assesses a study that asks the question ‘Is emotional labor more difficult for some than for others’. The article contrasts deep and surface acting and how they relate

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to job satisfaction, employee performance, and longevity. Supporting articles determine through studies that understanding signs of burnout and identifying sources of emotional anguish create employee engagement and higher performance. Are employers who are able to identify psychological traits of employees and understand the correlation between organizational expectation and emotional labor better able to increase job satisfaction and performance? Experimental research studies will be used to evaluate this thesis question and draw solutions based on study results.

Understanding Emotion

Hurst C., Judge, T.A., & Woolf, E.F. (2009) explained surface acting as a strategy that “involves engaging in a superficial display of the normative emotion without making any effort to change what one is actually feeling” and deep acting is a strategy that “consists of one trying to modify felt emotions in order to bring both...
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