Fear of Losing job Leads to Poorer Performance

Job stress affects workers differently

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(RxWiki News) A recently published study by The Spanish Journal of Psychology suggests that the more a person fears they will lose their job, the worse they will perform. But, as the study suggests, not all working groups react equally to the same fear.

Within the study, three main groups were identified: blue-collar workers (lower-skilled), white-collar workers (some skill and education) and professionals (highly skilled).

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When faced with job uncertainty, white-collar workers displayed the most dissatisfaction, but their dissatisfaction seemed to be confined only to the area of their life that concerned employment. Whereas blue-collar workers tended to feel the most dissatisfied not only with their jobs, but with other areas of their life as well as.

They also performed the worst of the three groups in the face of employment uncertainty. In this study, evidence as to how professionals react to this stress was not readily revealed. 

The study was conducted through a survey of 321 workers who responded to the provided questionnaire. Of those surveyed, 51.4% worked in hospitals, 25.7% in supermarkets and 22.9% were temporarily employed.

For Amparo Caballer, one of the co-authors of the study, the length of the worker’s contract was one the most important variables as 32.66% of the surveyed had permanent contracts while 34% held temporary or shot-term contracts.

"For work insecurity studies, whether the type of contract is temporary or permanent is an important variable," says Caballer.

But it’s also important to note that women made up the majority of the workers surveyed at 74.3%. One reason that men only made up 25.7% of the study is because women make up the majority of the work sectors surveyed.

The observational study was sponsored by the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya in Spain and was published by The Spanish Journal of Psychology in November 2011. No financial conflicts of interest were found.

Last Updated:
February 25, 2012