Affective Well-Being and Counterproductive Behavior in Healthcare Housekeepers

Michael Urick, Thomas Cline, John Gnecco, Danielle Jackson

Abstract


In a study of two samples, (a group of healthcare housekeepers and a group of non-housekeeper healthcare employees), counterproductive work behavior was found to be greater for the housekeepers. This sample reported not being likely to experience strong emotions, thereby calling into question the assumption that negative affect is related to deviance at work. This study makes several contributions including: (1) suggesting that stigmatized groups may become emotionally immune to negative stereotypes; (2) identifying a relationship between emotio- nal apathy and counterproductive work behaviors; and (3) suggesting that dirty work roles engage in counterproductive work behaviors uniquely based on particular job duties. Implications, limitations, and directions for future research are discussed.

Keywords: dirty work, counterproductive work behavior, affective well-being, stigma


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References


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Conclusion

In this study, we found that role (housekeepers ver- sus non-housekeepers) was related to emotional apathy and counterproductive work behaviors. This paper is one of the first to our knowledge that examines this specific group of employees in relation to emotional well-being and counterproductive work behaviors. Furthermore, it presents interesting findings that negative emotions need not be related to counterproductive work behavior. Like- wise, it suggests that unique dirty work roles might engage in counterproductive work behaviors differently if they ex- perience stigmas. Furthermore, this paper examines how stigmas, stereotypes, and dirty work might be related to af- fective well-being and counterproductive work behaviors through an empirical survey-based approach.

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