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Job Calling and Perceived Work Stress in Zookeepers: Problem-Focused Coping as a Mediator

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There are some factors that have been used to explain why the presence of a calling (i.e., “an approach to work that reflects the belief that one's career is a

There are some factors that have been used to explain why the presence of a calling (i.e., “an approach to work that reflects the belief that one's career is a central part of a broader sense of purpose and meaning in life and is used to help others or advance the greater good in some fashion” (Duffy & Dik, 2013, p. 429) reduces work stress and its potential negative outcomes, such as absenteeism, job performance and productivity, work-related accidents and overall employee health. The effect of problem-focused coping, however, remains largely untested as a potential mediator in this relation. The present study was conducted to quantitatively test whether problem-focused coping would mediate the relation between having a calling to work and perceived work stress in zookeepers. Participants were recruited through an online survey. They responded to questionnaires regarding calling, problem-focused coping, and work stress. Using hierarchical regression analyses, it was found that problem-focused coping partially mediated the relation between presence of a calling and perceived work stress. Specifically, having the presence of a calling to work predicted greater problem-focused style of coping, which, in turn, led to lower perceived work stress. Future directions for research were discussed.

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  • 2018

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Electronic Communication for Professionals—Challenges and Opportunities

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The 21st-century professional or knowledge worker spends much of the working day engaging others through electronic communication. The modes of communication available to knowledge workers have rapidly increased due to

The 21st-century professional or knowledge worker spends much of the working day engaging others through electronic communication. The modes of communication available to knowledge workers have rapidly increased due to computerized technology advances: conference and video calls, instant messaging, e-mail, social media, podcasts, audio books, webinars, and much more. Professionals who think for a living express feelings of stress about their ability to respond and fear missing critical tasks or information as they attempt to wade through all the electronic communication that floods their inboxes. Although many electronic communication tools compete for the attention of the contemporary knowledge worker, most professionals use an electronic personal information management (PIM) system, more commonly known as an e-mail application and often the ubiquitous Microsoft Outlook program. The aim of this research was to provide knowledge workers with solutions to manage the influx of electronic communication that arrives daily by studying the workers in their working environment. This dissertation represents a quest to understand the current strategies knowledge workers use to manage their e-mail, and if modification of e-mail management strategies can have an impact on productivity and stress levels for these professionals. Today’s knowledge workers rarely work entirely alone, justifying the importance of also exploring methods to improve electronic communications within teams.

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  • 2018