Portland State University. Department of Psychology
Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Applied Psychology
1 online resource (vi, 213 pages)
Organizational justice -- Case studies, Blue collar workers -- Job stress -- Psychological aspects -- Case studies, Blue collar workers -- Job stress -- Physiological aspects -- Case studies, Body mass index, Job satisfaction, Quality of work life
Recent decades have seen an explosion of research centered on understanding the influential impact that job stressors have on employees' subjective well-being, and now more recently, on objective assessments of physical health. Utilizing baseline data from a larger study funded by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), I conducted a field study on blue-collar employees from two organizations in the construction industry, with the goal of exploring the impact of job stressors on job satisfaction (subjective well-being) and body mass index (objective health), as well as the influence of organizational justice as a moderator and exercise as a mediator in those relationships.
In support of previous research, results show that job stressors (job demands, low skill discretion, and low decision authority) all had significant direct effects on job satisfaction in the expected directions, signifying that the fewer demands and more control one has in their work role, the more satisfied one is. Results also indicate that distributive and procedural justice have significant main effects on job satisfaction, illustrating that higher perceptions of justice are related to higher levels of job satisfaction.
With respect to objective health, the data provides empirical support for the relationship between job control (skill discretion and decision authority) and BMI; however, job demands did not have a significant main effect on BMI. More importantly, the rarely studied relationship between organizational justice and BMI was investigated (Robbins et al., 2012), with results indicating that procedural and distributive justice are important influences on one's BMI level.
Post hoc analyses revealed that distributive and procedural justice are two relevant mediators to consider in the job stressor-job satisfaction relationship, illustrating the importance of considering employees' fairness perceptions with regards to their satisfaction levels. Moreover, exercise was found to be a significant moderator to the relationship between job demands and BMI, as well as the relationship between distributive justice and job satisfaction, shedding light on physical activity within the work and health contexts as a factor that interacts with employees' perceptions of justice and their workload demands to impact their psychological and physical health. Considering the cross-sectional nature of these data, all mediation and moderation results should be interpreted with caution.
With empirical support found for the direct association between job stressors and organizational justice and the outcomes of job satisfaction and BMI, this study has significant implications for researchers and practitioners alike to further expand upon these findings and implement them into organizational practice in support of the Total Worker Health initiative, which aims to promote employee safety and health (Schill & Chosewood, 2013). Results suggest a healthy workforce is the result of the combination of employers transforming the work environment into a more just, transparent and trustworthy place to work, starting with the dynamics between supervisors and their employees, in conjunction with targeted interventions on employees' modifiable behaviors, such as engaging in physical activity and healthier eating habits.
Costa, Ana Cristina B., "The Effects of Organizational Justice and Exercise on the Relationship between Job Stressors and Employee Health" (2014). Dissertations and Theses. Paper 1853.