Flow at Work: Evidence for an Upward Spiral of Personal and Organizational Resources* Abstract
The present 2-wave study among 258 secondary school teachers investigates the relationship between personal and organizational resources on the one hand, and work-related flow on the other hand. On the basis of Hobfoll’s (1988) conservation of resources theory, Bandura’ social cognitive theory (1997; 2001), and Fredrickson’s (1998) “broaden-and-build” theory of positive emotions, we formulated two hypotheses: (1) personal resources (i.e., self-efficacy beliefs) and organizational resources (including social support climate and clear goals) facilitate work-related flow (work absorption, work enjoyment, and intrinsic work motivation); and (2) work-related flow has a positive influence on personal and organizational resources. The results of a series of structural equation modeling analyses offer clear support for both hypotheses. The theoretical and practical implications of these findings are discussed.
Keywords flow organizational resources personal resources positive psychology teachers
*This research was supported by a grant from the Bancaixa Foundation (#11232.01/1) and the Spanish Ministry of Science & Technology (CICYT #SEC2000-1031).
Arbuckle J.L.: 1997, Amos users’ guide. Version 4.0. Chicago, Ill: Smallwaters
Google Scholar Bakker, A.B. 2001Questionnaire for the Assessment of Work-related Flow: The WOLF Department of Social and Organizational Psychology, Utrecht University The Netherlands Google Scholar Bakker, A.B. 2005 ‘Flow among music teachers and their students: The crossover of peak experiences’ Journal of Vocational Behavior 66 26 44 Google Scholar Bakker, A.B., Demerouti, E., Boer, , Schaufeli, W.B. 2003 Job demands and job resources as predictors of absence duration and frequency Journal of Vocational Behavior 62 341 356 CrossRef Google Scholar Bakker, A.B., Demerouti, E., Schaufeli, W.B. 2003 ‘Dual processes at work in a call centre: An application of the Job Demands – Resources model’ European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology 12 393 417 CrossRef Google Scholar Bakker, A.B., Demerouti, E., Verbeke, W. 2004 ‘Using the Job Demands – Resources model to predict burnout and performance’ Human Resource Management 43 83 104 CrossRef Google Scholar Bandura, A. 1997Self-efficacy: The Exercise of Control Freeman New York, NY Google Scholar Bandura, A. 1999 ‘Social cognitive theory of personality’ Pervin, L. John, O. eds. Handbook of Personality2 Guilford New York 154 196 Google Scholar Bandura, A. 2001 ‘Social cognitive theory: An agentic perspective’ Annual Review of Psychology 52 1 26 CrossRef Google Scholar Boulton, M.J., Smith, P.K. 1992 ‘The social nature of play fighting and play chasing: Mechanisms and strategies underlying cooperation and compromise’ Barkow, J.H. Cosmides, L. Tooby, J. eds. The Adapted Mind: Evolutionary Psychology and the Generation of Culture Oxford University Press New York 429 444 Google Scholar Bryan, R., Mathur, S., Sullivan, K. 1996 The impact of positive mood on learning Learning Disabilities Quarterly 19 153 162 Google Scholar Caro, T.M. 1988 Adaptive significance of play: Are we getting closer? Tree 3 50 54 Google Scholar Csikszentmihalyi, M. 1990Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience HarperCollins New York Google Scholar Csikszentmihalyi, M. 1997Finding Flow: The Psychology of Engagement with Everyday Life HarperCollins New York Google Scholar Csikszentmihalyi, M., Rathunde, K., Whalen, S. 1993Talented Teenagers: The Roots of Success and Failure Cambridge University Press New York Google Scholar Deci, E.L., Ryan, R.M. 1985Intrinsic Motivation and Self-determination in Human Behaviour Plenum New York Google Scholar
De Lange, A.: 2003, Three types of causation and longitudinal research. APA-NIOSH conference, Toronto, Canada (March 2003)
Google Scholar Demerouti, E., Bakker, A.B., Nachreiner, F., Schaufeli, W.B. 2001 ‘The job demands – resources model of burnout’ Journal of Applied Psychology 86 499 512 CrossRef Google Scholar Diener, E. 2000 Subjective well-being, the science of happiness and a proposal for a national index American Psychologist 55 34 43 CrossRef Google Scholar Diener, E., Diener, C. 1996 Most people are happy Psychological Science 7 181 185 Google Scholar Ellis, G.D., Voelkl, J.E., Morris, C. 1994 ‘Measurement and analyses issues with explanation of variance in daily experience using the flow model’ Journal of Leisure Research 26 337 256 Google Scholar Fredrickson, B.L., Branigan, C. 2005 ‘Positive emotions broaden the scope of attention and thought-action repertories’ Cognition and Emotion 19 313 332 Google Scholar
Fredrickson, B.L., and T. Joiner: (in press), ‘Positive emotions trigger upward spirals toward emotional well-being’ Psychological Science
Google Scholar Fredrickson, B.L. 1998 ‘What good are positive emotions?’ Review of General Psychology 2 300 319 CrossRef Google Scholar Fredrickson, B.L. 2001 ‘The role of positive emotions in positive psychology: The broaden-and-build theory of positive emotions’ American Psychologist 56 218 226 CrossRef Google Scholar Fredrickson, B.L. 2002 ‘Positive emotions’ Snyder, C.R. Lopez, S. eds. The Handbook of Positive Psychology Oxford University Press Oxford 715 730 Google Scholar Ghani, J.A., Deshpande, S.P. 1994 ‘Task characteristics and the experience of optimal flow in human-computer interaction’ The Journal of Psychology 128 381 391 Google Scholar Grau, R., Salanova, M., Peiró, J.M. 2001 Moderating effects of self-efficacy on occupational stress Psychology in Spain 5 63 74 Google Scholar
González-Romá V., S. Lloret and J.M. Peiró: April, 1995, The Measurement of climate: An abridged version of the FOCUS Questionnaire. 7th European Congress on Work and Organizational Psychology, Gyôr, Hungary
Google Scholar Hackman, J.R., Oldham, G.R. 1980Work Redesign Reading Addison Wesley MA Google Scholar Harackiewicz, J.M, Elliot, A.J. 1998 ‘The joint effects of target and purpose goals on intrinsic motivation: A mediational analysis’ Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin 24 657 689 Google Scholar Hobfoll, S.E. 1989 ‘Conservation of resources: A new attempt at conceptualizing stress’ American Psychologist 44 513 524 CrossRef Google Scholar Hobfoll, S.E. 1998Stress, Culture, and Community: The Psychology and Philosophy of Stress Plenum New York Google Scholar Hobfoll, S.E. 2002 ‘Social and psychological resources and adaptation’ Review of General Psychology 6 307 324 CrossRef Google Scholar Hobfoll, S.E., Johson, R.J., Ennis, N., Jackson, A.P. 2003 ‘Resource loss, resource gain and emotional outcomes among inner city women’ Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 84 632 643 Google Scholar
Houkes, I.: 2002, Work and Individual Determinants of Intrinsic Work Motivation, Emotional Exhaustion and Turnover Intention. Doctoral thesis, Maastricht University. Maastricht, The Netherlands: Datawyse
Google Scholar Hoyle, R.H. 1995 ‘The structural equation modeling approach: Basic concepts and fundamental issues’ Hoyle, R.H. eds. Structural Equation Modeling, Concepts, Issues, and Applications Sage Thousand Oaks, CA 1 15 Google Scholar
Jöreskog K.G. and D. Sörbom: 1986, LISREL User Guide Version VI (4th ed) (Scientific Software International Mooresville, I11)
Google Scholar Kelly, J.E. 1992 Does job re-design theory explain job re-design outcomes? Human Relations 45 753 774 CrossRef Google Scholar Larson, R., Richards, M.H. 1994Divergent Realities: The Emotional Lives of Mothers, Fathers, and Adolescents Basic Books New York Google Scholar Luthans, F. 2002a ‘Positive organizational behavior: Developing and maintaining psychological strengths’ Academy of Management Executive 16 57 72 Google Scholar Luthans, F. 2002b The need for and meaning of positive organizational behavior Journal of Organizational Behavior 23 695 706 CrossRef Google Scholar Luthans, F. 2003 ‘Positive organizational behavior (POB): Implications for leadership and HR development and motivation’ Steers, R.M. Porter, L.W. Bigley, G.A. eds. Motivation and Leadership at Work McGraw-Hill/Irwin New York 178 195 Google Scholar Marsh, H.W., Balla, J.R., Hau, K.T. 1996 ‘An evaluation of Incremental Fit Indices: A clarification of mathematical and empirical properties’ Marcoulides, G.A. Schumacker, R.E. eds. Advanced Structural Equation Modeling, Issues and Techniques Lawrence Erlbaum Mahwah, NJ 315 353 Google Scholar Pitts, S.C., West, S.G., Tein, J.Y. 1996 Longitudinal measurement models in evaluation research: Examining stability and change Evaluation and Program Planning 19 333 350 CrossRef Google Scholar
Salanova, M., S. Agut and J.M. Peiró: in press, Linking organizational resources and work engagement to employee performance and customer loyalty: The mediating role of service climate. Journal of Applied Psychology
Google Scholar Salanova, M., Grau, R., Cifre, E., Llorens, S. 2000 Computer training, frequency of use and burnout: The moderating role of computer self-efficacy Computers in Human Behaviour 16 575 590 CrossRef Google Scholar Salanova, M, Llorens, S., Cifre, E., Martinez, I., Schaufeli, W.B. 2003 ‘Perceived collective efficacy, subjective well-being and task performance among electronic work groups: An experimental study’ Small Groups Research 34 43 73 Google Scholar Salanova, M., Llorens, S., Peiró, J.M., Schaufeli, W. July, 2002How Positive Emotions Predict Self-Efficacy Via Engagement: A Positive Occupational Psychology Framework Symposium Job Engagement, 25th ICAP Congress Singapore Google Scholar Salanova, M., Peiró, J.M., Schaufeli, W.B. 2002 ‘Self-efficacy specificity and burnout among information technology workers: An extension of the job demands-control model’ European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology 11 1 25 CrossRef Google Scholar
Schwarzer, R.: 1999, General perceived self-efficacy in 14 cultures. Self-efficacy assessment.
http://www.yorku.ca/faculty/academic/schwarze/world14.htm Taris, T.W. 2000A Primer in Longitudinal Data Analysis Sage Thousand Oaks, CA Google Scholar Muijen, J.J., Koopman, P., Witte, K., Cock, G., Susanj, Z, Lemoine Bourantes, F.D., Papalexandris, N., Branyicski, I., Spaltro, E., Jesuino, J., Gonzalez das Neves, J., Pitariu, H., Konrad, E., Peiró, J., Gonzalez-Romá, V., Turnipseed, D. 1999 Organizational culture: The FOCUS questionnaire European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology 8 551 568 Google Scholar Veenhoven, R. 1984Conditions of Happiness Kluwer Dordrecht, The Netherlands Google Scholar Wong, C.S., Hui, C., Law, K.S. 1998 A longitudinal study of the job perception-job satisfaction relationship: A test of the three alternative specifications Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology 71 127 146 Google Scholar Wright, 2003 Positive organizational behavior: An idea whose time has truly come Journal of Organizational Behavior 24 437 442 Google Scholar