Skip to main content

Empowering Millennials Working in Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs)’ Affective Wellbeing: Role of Volition, Justice and Meaning at Work

  • 44 Accesses

Abstract

Working in SMEs can be especially stimulating and challenging to millennial employees who will soon be the biggest generation serving the workforce. This paper addresses the impact of work volition and organisational justice on the affective wellbeing of millennial employees. It seeks to better understand the role meaningful work has on millennials’ affective wellbeing. Using a sample of 403 millennial employees working in SMEs, this paper employs a quantitative data analysis approach using SPSS PROCESS. The results suggest that work volition (in regards to sub dimensions of volition and structural constraints) significantly predicts better affective wellbeing among millennial workers. While organisational justice, in relation to interactional and distributive justice, positively predicted millennials’ affective wellbeing. Meaningful work was found to mediate all paths in the relationships of work volition and organisational justice with affective wellbeing. Implications of this paper include promoting affective wellbeing of millennials by providing more transparency and opportunities to express as well as cultivating a good match between employee-employer promises, processes, and work expectations. This study also highlights the important role of promoting meaning at work to enable millennial workers to thrive in their careers.

Keywords

  • Work volition
  • Organisational justice
  • Meaning at work
  • Wellbeing
  • SME
  • Millennials

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Buying options

Chapter
USD   29.95
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • DOI: 10.1007/978-981-19-5086-5_8
  • Chapter length: 15 pages
  • Instant PDF download
  • Readable on all devices
  • Own it forever
  • Exclusive offer for individuals only
  • Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout
eBook
USD   149.00
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • ISBN: 978-981-19-5086-5
  • Instant PDF download
  • Readable on all devices
  • Own it forever
  • Exclusive offer for individuals only
  • Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout
Hardcover Book
USD   199.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
Fig. 1.
Fig. 2.

References

  • Allan, B.A., Autin, K.L., Duffy, R.D.: Examining social class and work meaning within the psychology of working framework. J. Career Assess. 22, 543–561 (2014)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Allan, B.A., Sterling, H.M., Duffy, R.D.: Longitudinal relations among economic deprivation, work volition, and academic satisfaction: a psychology of working perspective. Int. J. Educ. Vocat. Guidance 20(2), 311–329 (2020)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Arnold, K.A., Turner, N., Barling, J., Kelloway, E.K., McKee, M.C.: Transformational leadership and psychological well-being: the mediating role of meaningful work. J. Occup. Health Psychol. 12(3), 193 (2007)

    PubMed  CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Autin, K.L., Douglass, R.P., Duffy, R.D., England, J.W., Allan, B.A.: Subjective social status, work volition, and career adaptability: a longitudinal study. J. Vocat. Behav. 99, 1–10 (2017)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Aziz, K.A., Rahman, R.H.A., Yusof, H.M., Yunus, W.M.A.W.M.: A review on generational differences and work-related attitude. Int. J. Acad. Res. Bus. Soc. Sci. 8(8), 346–360 (2018)

    Google Scholar 

  • Blustein, D.: The Psychology of Working: A New Perspective for Career Development, Counseling, and Public Policy. Routledge (2013)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Blustein, D.L.: The role of work in psychological health and well-being: a conceptual, historical, and public policy perspective. Am. Psychol. 63(4), 228 (2008)

    PubMed  CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Blustein, D.L., et al.: Voices of the forgotten half: the role of social class in the school-to-work transition. J. Couns. Psychol. 49(3), 311 (2002)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Chaiprasit, K., Santidhiraku, O.: Happiness at work of employees in small and medium-sized enterprises, Thailand. Procedia Soc. Behav. Sci. 25, 189–200 (2011)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Cramer, E., Hunter, B.: Relationships between working conditions and emotional wellbeing in midwives. Women Birth 32(6), 521–532 (2019)

    PubMed  CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Cropanzano, R., Byrne, Z.S., Bobocel, D.R., Rupp, D.E.: Moral virtues, fairness heuristics, social entities, and other denizens of organizational justice. J. Vocat. Behav. 58(2), 164–209 (2001)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Cwynar, A.: Financial literacy, behaviour and well-being of millennials in Poland compared to previous generations: the insights from three large-scale surveys. Rev. Econ. Perspect. 20(3), 289–335 (2020)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Deloitte: Deloitte global human capital trends: rewriting the rules for the digital age (2017). https://www2.deloitte.com/content/dam/Deloitte/global/Documents/HumanCapital/hc-2017-global-human-capital-trends-gx.pdf

  • Dik, B.J., Steger, M.F., Autin, K.L.: Emerging perspectives: calling, meaning, and volition. In: Career Development and Counseling: Putting Theory and Research to Work, 237 (2020)

    Google Scholar 

  • Duffy, R.D., Dik, B.J.: Beyond the self: external influences in the career development process. Career Dev. Q. 58(1), 29–43 (2009)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Duffy, R.D., Autin, K.L., Bott, E.M.: Work volition and job satisfaction: examining the role of work meaning and person environment. Career Dev. Q. 63, 126–140 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1002/cdq.12009

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Duffy, R.D., Blustein, D.L., Diemer, M.A., Autin, K.L.: The psychology of working theory. J. Couns. Psychol. 63, 127–148 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1037/cou0000140

    CrossRef  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • Duffy, R.D., Bott, E.M., Torrey, C.L., Webster, G.W.: Work volition as a critical moderator in the prediction of job satisfaction. J. Career Assess. 21(1), 20–31 (2013)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Duffy, R.D., Diemer, M.A., Perry, J.C., Laurenzi, C., Torrey, C.L.: The construction and initial validation of the work volition scale. J. Vocat. Behav. 80, 400–411 (2012). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jvb.2011.04.002

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Elovainio, M., Kivimäki, M., Puttonen, S., Lindholm, H., Pohjonen, T., Sinervo, T.: Organisational injustice and impaired cardiovascular regulation among female employees. Occup. Environ. Med. 63(2), 141–144 (2006)

    PubMed  PubMed Central  CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • European Commission (n.d.): Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/web/structural-business-statistics/structural-business-statistics/sme#:~:text=SMEs%20are%20defined%20by%20the,Recommendation%20of%206%20May%202003)

  • Faragher, E.B., Cass, M., Cooper, C.L.: The relationship between job satisfaction and health: a meta-analysis. From Stress Wellbeing 1, 254–271 (2013)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Ferri-Reed, J.: Millennializing the workplace. J. Qual. Particip. 37(1), 13 (2014)

    Google Scholar 

  • Gaidhani, S., Arora, L., Sharma, B.K.: Understanding the attitude of generation Z towards workplace. Int. J. Manag. Technol. Eng. 9(1), 2804–2812 (2019)

    Google Scholar 

  • Guest, D.E.: Is the psychological contract worth taking seriously? J. Organ. Behav. Int. J. Ind. Occup. Organ. Psychol. Behav. 19(S1), 649–664 (1998)

    Google Scholar 

  • Hackman, J.R., Oldham, G.R.: Motivation through the design of work: test of a theory. Organ. Behav. Hum. Perform. 16(2), 250–279 (1976)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Heneman, R.L., Tansky, J.W., Camp, S.M.: Human resource management practices in small and medium-sized enterprises: unanswered questions and future research perspectives. Entrep. Theory Pract. 25(1), 11–26 (2000)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • He, J., Morrison, A.M., Zhang, H.: Improving millennial employee well-being and task performance in the hospitality industry: the interactive effects of HRM and responsible leadership. Sustainability 11(16), 4410 (2019)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Herr, R.M., et al.: Organizational justice, justice climate, and somatic complaints: a multilevel investigation. J. Psychosom. Res. 111, 15–21 (2018)

    PubMed  CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Hershatter, A., Epstein, M.: Millennials and the world of work: an organization and management perspective. J. Bus. Psychol. 25(2), 211–223 (2010)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Hosie, P.J., Sevastos, P.P.: A framework for conceiving of job-related affective wellbeing. Manag. Rev., 406–436 (2010)

    Google Scholar 

  • James, K.: The social context of organizational justice: cultural, intergroup and structural effects on justice behaviors and perceptions. In: Cropanzano, R. (ed.) Justice in the Workplace: Approaching Fairness in Human Resource Management, pp. 21–50. Erlbaum, Hillsdale (1993)

    Google Scholar 

  • Kernan, M.C., Racicot, B.M., Fisher, A.M.: Effects of abusive supervision, psychological climate, and felt volition on work outcomes: a moderated mediated model. J. Leadersh. Organ. Stud. 23(3), 309–321 (2016)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Kim, H.: Integrating organizational justice into the relationship management theory. Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the International Communication Association, New York City, May 2009

    Google Scholar 

  • Kotter, J.P.: ‘The psychological contract’. California Manag. Rev. 15, 91±99 (1973)

    Google Scholar 

  • Lawson, K.J., Noblet, A.J., Rodwell, J.J.: Promoting employee wellbeing: the relevance of work characteristics and organizational justice. Health Promot. Int. 24(3), 223–233 (2009)

    PubMed  CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Liu, J., Zhu, Y., Serapio, M.G., Cavusgil, S.T.: The new generation of millennial entrepreneurs: a review and call for research. Int. Bus. Rev. 28(5), 101581 (2019)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Lusardi, A.: Financial well-being of the millennial generation: an in-depth analysis of its drivers and implications. GFLEC Working Paper (2019)

    Google Scholar 

  • McDonald, N.C.: Are millennials really the “go-nowhere” generation? J. Am. Plann. Assoc. 81(2), 90–103 (2015)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Moorman, R.H.: Relationship between organizational justice and organizational citizenship behaviors: do fairness perceptions influence employee citizenship? J. Appl. Psychol. 76(6), 845 (1991)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Nadiri, H., Tanova, C.: An investigation of the role of justice in turnover intentions, job satisfaction, and organizational citizenship behavior in hospitality industry. Int. J. Hosp. Manag. 29(1), 33–41 (2010)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Ndjaboué, R., Brisson, C., Vézina, M.: Organisational justice and mental health: a systematic review of prospective studies. Occup. Environ. Med. 69(10), 694–700 (2012)

    PubMed  CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Ng, E.S., Schweitzer, L., Lyons, S.: New generation, great expectations: a field study of the millennial generation. J. Bus. Psychol. 25, 281–292 (2010)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Pandey, D.L.: Job hopping tendency in Millenials. NCC J. 4(1), 41–46 (2019)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Pérez-Rodríguez, V., Topa, G., Beléndez, M.: Organizational justice and work stress: the mediating role of negative, but not positive, emotions. Pers. Individ. Differ. 151, 109392 (2019)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Pew Research Center: Defining generations: where millennials end and generation Z begins (2019). https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2019/01/17/where-millennials-end-and-generation-z-begins/

  • Pînzaru, F., et al.: Millennials at work: investigating the specificity of generation Y versus other generations. Manag. Dyn. Knowl. Econ. 4(2), 173–192 (2016)

    Google Scholar 

  • Pradhan, S., Pradhan, R.K.: Transformational leadership and job outcomes: the mediating role of meaningful work. Glob. Bus. Rev. 17(3_suppl), 173S–185S (2016)

    Google Scholar 

  • Radas, S., Božić, L.: The antecedents of SME innovativeness in an emerging transition economy. Technovation 29(6–7), 438–450 (2009)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Raines, C.: Managing millennials. In: Connecting Generations: The Sourcebook, vol. 16 (2002)

    Google Scholar 

  • Roloff, R.C.: Millennials in the workforce: developing a retention strategy (2021)

    Google Scholar 

  • Rosso, B.D., Dekas, K.H., Wrzesniewski, A.: On the meaning of work: a theoretical integration and review. Res. Organ. Behav. 30, 91–127 (2010)

    Google Scholar 

  • Rothmann, S.: Job satisfaction, occupational stress, burnout and work engagement as components of work-related wellbeing. SA J. Ind. Psychol. 34(3), 11–16 (2008)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Siahaan, F.L., Gatari, E.: Searching for meaning: the mediating role of work engagement in the relationship between meaningful work and turnover intention of Millennials. Psikohumaniora: Jurnal Penelitian Psikologi 5(1), 15–28 (2020)

    Google Scholar 

  • Singh, P., Bhandarker, A., Rai, S.: Millennials and the Workplace: Challenges for Architecting the Organizations of Tomorrow. SAGE Publications India (2012)

    Google Scholar 

  • Soenen, G., Eib, C., Torrès, O.: The cost of injustice: overall justice, emotional exhaustion, and performance among entrepreneurs: do founders fare better? Small Bus. Econ. 53(2), 355–368 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11187-018-0052-2

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Steger, M.F., Dik, B.J., Duffy, R.D.: Measuring meaningful work: the work and meaning inventory (WAMI). J. Career Assess. 20(3), 322–337 (2012)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Supanti, D., Butcher, K.: Is corporate social responsibility (CSR) participation the pathway to foster meaningful work and helping behavior for millennials? Int. J. Hosp. Manag. 77, 8–18 (2019)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Tan, K.L., Lew, T.Y., Sim, A.K.: An innovative solution to leverage meaningful work to attract, retain and manage generation Y employees in Singapore’s hotel industry. Worldwide Hospitality and Tourism Themes (2019)

    Google Scholar 

  • Twenge, J.M.: A review of the empirical evidence on generational differences in work attitudes. J. Bus. Psychol. 25(2), 201–210 (2010)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Twenge, J., Campbell, S., Hoffman, B., Lance, C.: Generational differences in work values: leisure and extrinsic values increasing, social and intrinsic values decreasing. J. Manag. 36(5), 1117–1142 (2010)

    Google Scholar 

  • Van Katwyk, P.T., Fox, S., Spector, P.E., Kelloway, E.K.: Using the Job-Related Affective Well-Being Scale (JAWS) to investigate affective responses to work stressors. J. Occup. Health Psychol. 5(2), 219 (2000)

    PubMed  CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Van Wingerden, J., Van der Stoep, J.: The role of meaningful work in employees’ work related and general well-being. Int. J. Hum. Res. Stud. 7(4), 23–37 (2017)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Webb: Small businesses not targeting millennials or Gen Z enough, missing out (2019). https://dynamicbusiness.com.au/featured/small-businesses-not-targeting-millennials-or-gen-z-enough-missing-out.html

  • Weeks, K.P., Schaffert, C.: Generational differences in definitions of meaningful work: a mixed methods study. J. Bus. Ethics 156(4), 1045–1061 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10551-017-3621-4

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Wood, J.C.: Millennials in the workplace: mystery or magic? Dispute Resolut. J. 74(1), 111–120 (2019)

    Google Scholar 

  • Xu, Y., Cheng, Z., Zhang, Y.: Promotion of millennial employees’ well-being in China based on organizational career management. Soc. Behav. Personal. Int. J. 49(9), 1–12 (2021)

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Yap, W.M., Badri, S.K.Z.: Work life balance and job-related affective wellbeing: moderating role of work autonomy. In: 32nd International Congress of Psychology, Prague, Czech Republic, July 2021

    Google Scholar 

  • Yap, W.M., Badri, S.K.Z.: What Makes Millennials Happy in their Workplace? Asian Acad. Manag. J. 25(1) (2020)

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Acknowledgement

This paper received ethical approval from the Division of Organisational and Applied Psychology, University of Nottingham, Malaysia campus and was supported by HELP University and University of Nottingham.

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Wai Meng Yap .

Editor information

Editors and Affiliations

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

Copyright information

© 2022 The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd.

About this paper

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this paper

Yap, W.M., Badri, S.K.Z., Yunus, W.M.A.W.M., Mansilla, O. (2022). Empowering Millennials Working in Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs)’ Affective Wellbeing: Role of Volition, Justice and Meaning at Work. In: Hunt, T., Tan, L.M. (eds) Applied Psychology Readings. SCAP 2021. Springer, Singapore. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-981-19-5086-5_8

Download citation