Work-role fit, meaningfulness and engagement of industrial/organisational psychologists in South Africa / Llewellyn Ellardus van Zyl.
Van Zyl, Llewellyn Ellardus
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The work of industrial/organisational (I/O) psychologists presents an interesting context for studying meaning and engagement (as eudaimonic components of happiness). (I/O) psychologists spend more than 88% of their working day with people, and they are primary role models for happiness and change in the workplace. Information about the manifestation of their meaning and work engagement is therefore needed. The aim of this study was to determine how (I/O) psychologists experience the meaning of their work and to investigate the relationships between their experiences of work-role fit, meaning of work, psychological meaningfulness, and work engagement. The research method consisted out of a literature review and empirical study. A survey design with a convenience sample (n = 106) was taken from a sample of registered (I/O) psychologists. A biographical questionnaire, the Work-role Fit Scale (WRFS), Work-life Questionnaire (WLQ), Psychological Meaningfulness Scale (PMS), Work Engagement Scale (WES) and a self-developed survey measuring the actual and desired time spent on six broad categories of work were administered. The statistical analysis was carried out by means of SPSS (2009). Exploratory factor analyses showed one factor models for work-role fit, psychological meaningfulness and work engagement. A two factor model for the meaning of work (a job/calling and career orientation) was found. Cronbach alpha coefficients ranging from 0,80 to 0,93 were obtained. The results showed that a discrepancy exists between the actual time and desired time spent on the six broad categories of work (see Benjamin & Louw-Potgieter, 2008). Furthermore, the results showed that half the 1/0 psychologists view their work as callings. Whereas only 16% view their work as a career and 6,6% as a job. Regression analyses indicated that work-role fit predicts psychological meaningfulness and work engagement. The job/calling orientation predicted both psychological meaningfulness and work engagement. Work-role fit predicted the job/calling orientation. Psychological meaningfulness did not mediate the relationship between work-role fit and work engagement. Work-role fit mediated the relationship between the meaning of work and psychological meaningfulness. Work-role fit partially mediated the relationship between a calling orientation and work engagement
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