Academic journal article The Spanish Journal of Psychology

The Impact of Environmental Stressors and Types of Work Contract on Occupational Stress

Academic journal article The Spanish Journal of Psychology

The Impact of Environmental Stressors and Types of Work Contract on Occupational Stress

Article excerpt

This study aimed to investigate the impact of seven environmental stressors (role conflict, work overload, interpersonal difficulties, work-family conflict, work instability, lack of autonomy and pressure of responsibility) and the nature of the employment contract (permanent or atypical) on three psychological reactions to occupational stress (job satisfaction, positive emotions, and negative emotions at work). 305 Brazilian workers from both sexes participated in this research, distributed between permanent and atypical workers. The results showed that the role conflict and the work overload had a negative impact on job satisfaction. The role conflict had a negative impact on the positive emotions at work, while the pressure of responsibility interfered positively in it. The work overload interfered positively in the negative emotions at work, while the pressure of responsibility interfered negatively in it. The type of contract did not affect significantly any one of the dependent variables. The implications of the results for future research are discussed.

Keywords: occupational stress, job satisfaction, positive emotions at work, negative emotions at work.

El objetivo de este estudio fue investigar el impacto de siete estresores ambientales (rol de conflicto, sobrecarga de trabajo, dificultades interpersonales, conflicto trabajo-familia, inestabilidad en el trabajo, falta de autonomía y presión de responsabilidad) y de la naturaleza del contrato de trabajo (permanente o atípico), en tres reacciones psicológicas de estrés ocupacional: satisfacción laboral, emociones positivas y emociones negativas en el trabajo. Participaron 350 trabajadores brasileños de ambos sexos, distribuidos entre trabajadores permanentes y atípicos. Los resultados mostraron que el rol de conflicto y la sobrecarga de trabajo tuvieron un impacto negativo en la satisfacción laboral; el rol de conflicto tuvo un impacto negativo en las emociones positivas en el trabajo, mientras que la presión de responsabilidad interfirió positivamente. La sobrecarga de trabajo interfirió positivamente en las emociones negativas en el trabajo, mientras que la presión de responsabilidad interfirió negativamente en ellas. El tipo de contrato no afectó significativamente a ninguna de las variables dependientes. Se discuten las implicaciones de los resultados para la investigación futura.

Palabras clave: estrés ocupacional, satisfacción laboral, emociones positivas en el trabajo emociones negativas en el trabajo.

The discussion on the topic of stress has occupied a prominent place in books, newspapers, magazine, and scientific research, in addition to gaining increasing importance in the organizational and work areas. Guided by the interactive model (Lazarus, 1993), which takes into account not only the stress response, but also the causes and moderators of these responses, studies in this area have contributed to an increasingly accurate understanding of the various factors that contribute to the emergence of occupational stress, i.e., stress occurring in the workplace.

One of the main interactive models reported in the literature on occupational stress is that of Cooper and colleagues (Cartwright & Cooper, 1997; Cooper, Dewe, & O'Driscoll, 2001), which emphasizes the role played by six major environmental stressors, intrinsic job factors; organizational roles; relationships with coworkers, supervisors and subordinates; career development; organizational structure and climate and relationship between work and family, in the different reactions provoked by them.

The intrinsic job factors relate to levels of complexity associated with the performance of tasks, the degree of control that individuals have over their activities and the physical environment in which these activities occur. Thus, features such as noise, vibration, temperature, workload, work schedule, new technologies and exposure to risk and danger may interfere negatively with job performance (Cartwright & Cooper, 1997). …

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