The roles of context and everyday experience in understanding work-non-work relationships: a qualitative diary study of white- and blue-collar workers

Sarah Poppleton, Rob B. Briner, Tina Kiefer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

36 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The purpose of the study was to address several of the limitations of work-non-work research by adopting a qualitative diary methodology which explored insiders' accounts of both the positive and negative aspects of work-non-work relationships and examined the role of context in shaping such relationships. Daily diary data on work-non-work events and post-diary interview data were collected from participants in two contrasting organizational contexts: Flexorg (N=20), a progressive local government organization and The Factory (N=18), a traditional manufacturing organization. Work-non-work relationships were found to be simultaneously enriching and depleting in both organizations. For Flexorg workers, work-non-work relationships were characterized by facilitation and time-based conflicts. At The Factory, high spillover from work to non-work and vice versa challenged the assumption that blue-collar work is typified by segmentation (Nippert-Eng, 1995). The experience of work-non-work events was shaped by the nature of the work, the work-non-work culture and working patterns in both organizations. The study also identified negative spillover as a qualitatively more important problem than work-non-work conflict in this study, and identified a social dimension of work-non-work conflict which was found across organizational contexts.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)481-502
Number of pages22
JournalJournal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology
Volume81
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2008

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