Job crafting for better work design and well-being: An intervention evaluation
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Study goals & relevance: This study aims to evaluate whether a job crafting intervention with working part-time MBA students is effective for improving individual’s work design and work-related well-being. Further, we aim to identify boundary conditions affecting intervention success to better understand how and why they work. Previous job crafting interventions have proven successful for increasing job crafting behaviours and positively impacting outcomes such as work engagement and performance (e.g. Gordon et al., 2018) ). There is also emerging evidence that work design mediates between job crafting and outcomes (Tims, Bakker & Derks, 2013; van Wingerden, Bakker & Derks, 2017). By specifying the job crafting activities that individuals can complete, our intervention aims to build on this previous work by identifying which activities are most successful for shaping which aspects of work design, and why. Practitioners and managers can use this information when designing work for their employees. Method: Employing a quasi-experimental design,intervention (N=24 ) and control (N=23) groups were educated about work design and job crafting before participating in job -analysis via the well-established Michigan Job Crafting Exercise (Berg, Dutton, Wrzesniewski, & Baker, 2008). The intervention group were invited to try at least three job crafting activities per week over four weeks. These were designed specially by the researchers, drawing on literature and consultancy experience. Individuals completed short evaluation questions following each task. Both groups completed a pre-intervention, post-intervention and follow-up survey. Results: Preliminary results suggest that job crafting behaviours to increase structural resources and decrease hindering resources increased significantly in the intervention group, and this was related to the number of these types of tasks that individuals completed. We plan to assess the effect of the intervention on different aspects of work design as well as outcomes. Moderator analyses will help understand who the intervention is most successful for. Discussion: It is well established that good work design leads to better well-being and performance (Parker, Morgeson & Johns, 2017). Yet managers are often constrained by the systems and policies that are in place in organisations and thus are unable to make widespread positive changes to work design for their employees (Hornung, Rousseau, Glaser, Angere & Weigl, 2010). Job crafting is one way that employees themselves can self-initiate changes to make their work more motivating and energising within the boundaries of wider organisational constraints.
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