As April and Stress Awareness Month comes to a close, we recognize that stress can affect an individual’s life in many ways. In particular, research has found that work stress can have a significant impact on a person’s overall happiness and quality of life. According to the American Institute of Stress, the main causes of stress include workload (45%), people issues (28%), work/life balance (20%), and lack of job security (6%). In addition, 80% of workers reported feeling stress while at work, and nearly half said that they need help in learning how to cope with stress.
Want to know more about the impact of work stress on people’s lives?
In 2018 the stigma of mental illness still plagues the workplace, along with the direct and indirect costs associated with healthcare and lost productivity. In the face of negative attributions attached to mental health conditions, how do employees manage their conditions as well as the demands of their jobs? How do organizations develop cultures and systems that allow employees with mental illness to thrive in their respective roles while minimizing the costs for workers and the companies who employ them? How is mental illness conceptualized as a unique social identity warranting increased attention in management research? What are the avenues for future scholarly attention?
A recent article offers insights and contributions to the literature, as well as raising implications for policy and practice. Kayla B. Follmer of Salisbury University and Kisha S. Jones of The Pennsylvania State University recently published “Mental Illness in the Workplace: An Interdisciplinary Review and Organizational Research Agenda” in the Journal of Management. With millions of adults affected annually by mental illness and many active in the workforce, the need is great to supplant the limited knowledge of many organizations and leaders on how to support employees with mental illness.
From the Abstract:
Given the prevalence of and consequences associated with mental illness in the workplace, we believe this review is both critical and timely for researchers and practitioners. This systematic review broadens the extant literature in both theoretical and practical ways in an effort to help lay a foundation for the organizational scholarship of employees with mental illness, a group that has traditionally been underrepresented in the management and industrial-organizational psychology literatures. After defining and conceptualizing mental illness as a social identity, we systematically review the existing empirical research on employees with mental illness across multiple fields of study. Using research that accounts for individual, other, and organizational perspectives, we present a model that outlines the performance, employment, career, and discriminatory outcomes that characterize the experiences of individuals with mental illness as well as individual and organizational strategies that moderate the relationship between having a mental illness and experiencing those outcomes. Together, this article provides a synthesis of what is known about employees with mental illness while also highlighting avenues for future scholarly attention.
As is pointed out in the article, qualitative (exploratory) research has expanded in management science and is indeed critical to understanding organizational behavior and the behavior in organizations. Not just an activity embarked on following the research, “writing is perceived as central to qualitative research: how the story is experienced, (de)constructed, and proposed—and how it is in turn received and interpreted by the reader.” In this study, the authors examine the works of management and organizational scholars who have published their exploratory research in top journals to discover what can be learned from them. They present examples along with actionable writing heuristics and strategies towards the goal of bringing forward compelling qualitative studies to benefit the field. In the end, they “purport that qualitative research can be narrated with creativity and imagination, in line with its epistemological stance, and still be considered meaningful and academically rigorous by reviewers and scholars.”
Preparation for crisis management is often overlooked. While it is always important to prepare for the unknown, it is essential in recent times when uncertainty is especially prevalent. According to a study by the ODM Group, 79 percent of decision makers believe that they are about a year away from a potential crisis—however, only 54 percent of companies have a crisis plan in place.
How can we improve crisis management in the workplace? Can we expect the unexpected? What can we learn from those facing extreme crises on a regular basis? This month’s edition of the SAGE Business Bulletin looks closely at this issue.
Click to read and access this unique selection of resources.
When individuals identify with their occupations and organizations, good things generally happen. They tend to perform more effectively, make decisions with the organization’s best interests in mind, and are better organizational citizens. However, after hundreds of studies on identity and identification in the workplace, I think it’s time for some course corrections. Specifically, I argue that we’ve drifted away from the core aspect of identification – that is, the definition of oneself in terms of a target – treating identification as just another attitudinal variable; that the most important target of identification is not the organization per se, but the occupation, relationships, and groups or teams; that there is an important dark side to identification; and that we need to consider perspectives of identity beyond social identity theory/self-categorization theory.
How do you see this study influencing future research and/or practice?
Identity and identification have been vital concepts in organizational studies for decades. My hope is that these “course corrections” will help keep these concepts as vital and generative in the future as they have been in the past.
An excerpt from the article:
Identity and identification remain very popular constructs for organizational scholars, regularly generating a bounty of provocative research. To help maintain the generativity of these root constructs, I suggest four “course corrections” for our explorations, namely, focusing more on (1) the core aspect of identification, that is, the definition of self in terms of a target; (2) other targets of identification aside from the organization; (3) the dark side of identification; and (4) perspectives of identity beyond social identity theory/self-categorization theory.
We’ve all heard about them – huge successes and failures that undoubtedly color impressions of entrepreneurial risk and those involved. How do significant events change the subsequent threshold for organizations seeking to become market entries? Who fares better in this type of environment – consensus or non-consensus entrepreneurs? In a recent article in Administrative Science Quarterly authors Elizabeth G. Pontikes and William P. Barnett look at this less-heralded area of entrepreneurship in “The Non-consensus Entrepreneur: Organizational Responses to Vital Events.”
The abstract for the article:
Salient successes and failures, such as spectacular venture capital investments or agonizing bankruptcies, affect collective beliefs about the viability of particular markets. Using data on software start-ups from 1990 to 2002, we show that collective sense-making in the wake of such vital events can result in consensus behavior among entrepreneurs. Market search is a critical part of the entrepreneurial process, as entrepreneurs frequently enter new markets to find high-growth areas. When spectacular financings result in a collective overstatement of the attractiveness of a market, a consensus emerges that the market is resource-rich, and the path is cleared for many entries, including those that do not have a clear fit. When notorious failures render a market unpopular, only the most viable entrants will overcome exaggerated skepticism and enter, taking the non-consensus route. Venture capitalists likewise exhibit herding behavior, following other VCs into hot markets. We theorize that vital events effectively change the selection threshold for market entries, which changes the average viability of new entrants. We find that consensus entrants are less viable, while non-consensus entrants are more likely to prosper. Non-consensus entrepreneurs who buck the trends are most likely to stay in the market, receive funding, and ultimately go public.
As in recent years, work and economic issues have been on the minds of citizens worldwide – and not just on May Day. Almost on a daily basis we’ve seen or read about the challenges faced by employers, employees, unions, policy makers, and governments worldwide. From debates over raising the minimum wage, to discussions of pay equity and discrimination, workplace health risk factors and health insurance, and more, labor and work concerns are affecting us all. On this week set aside to recognize the international labor movement, we are pleased to highlight key journals in Economics, Industrial Relations & Labor.
We invite you to enjoy access to the following journals through June 30th. Click here to access the trial.
NEW TO SAGE IN 2016: We are pleased to publish The American Economist, the official journal of Omicron Delta Epsilon, the International Honor Society in Economics. The American Economist publishes original research from all fields and schools of economic thought, written by young scholars and those who are teaching the next generation of economists, as well as experienced and prominent economists whose influence has shaped the discipline. We invite you to read a special collection of articles from Nobel Peace Prize winning authors here.