Purpose: The purpose of this study is to investigate unwinding and recuperation among social workers, caretakers at a psychiatric ward, and teachers as well as caretakers at a psychiatric school for children.
Design/Methodology: Cluster analysis was used to identify groups of individuals (n=377) with similar activation-recuperation profiles. Six items were used and combined to identify level of activation and recuperation during 24-hr day. Three clusters were identified: “alert”, “in-between”, and “recuperated”. 28% fell into the nonrecuperated group, 44% in-between group, and 29% alert group. In the second analysis we investigated how the activationrecuperation profiles differed on a) symptoms of ill-health, b) illness related absence, c) organizational aspects.
Results: Preliminary analysis shows that nonrecuperated group have more symptoms of illhealth, higher degree illness related absence, and poorer attendance of when sick than the others groups. Failure to recuperate was related to aspects of work the environment such as imbalance between demands-control, and work-life imbalance and illegitimate tasks and wrong task.
Limitations: Cross-sectional studies of this kind do not able to test long-term effects. Therefore, we may not answer the question whether these effects are stable over time.
Research/Practical Implications: From a preventive perspective, it is important to identify situations and processes that may lead to occupational exclusion. In the case of this group of social workers and caretakers, a pattern emerged were strongly associated with fatigue, anxiety, and failure to recuperate.
Originality/Value: The value this study brings is the understanding how organizational characteristics may wear people down over a period of time by affecting negatively on individuals ability to unwind and recuperate.
2013. 230-231 p.
16th Congress of the European Association of Work and Organizational Psychology, 22-25 May, Münster, Germany