Rejuvenating The Concept Of Work Alienation Through Job Demands-Resources Model And Examining Its Relationship With Emotional Exhaustion And Explorative And Exploitative Learning
Received 5 February 2019
Accepted for publication 16 July 2019
Published 7 October 2019 Volume 2019:12 Pages 931—941
Checked for plagiarism Yes
Review by Single-blind
Peer reviewer comments 2
Editor who approved publication: Professor Mei-chun Cheung
Muhammad Aamir Shafique Khan,1 Du Jianguo,1 Areeba Mann,2 Sharjeel Saleem,3 Kofi Baah Boamah,1 Usman Javed,4 Muhammad Usman4
1School of Management, Jiangsu University, Zhenjiang Shi, Jiangsu Sheng, People’s Republic of China; 2Lahore Business School, The University of Lahore, Lahore, Pakistan; 3Lyallpur Business School, Government College University Faisalabad, Faisalabad, Pakistan; 4Department of Management Sciences, COMSATS University Islamabad, Lahore Campus, Lahore, Pakistan
Correspondence: Du Jianguo
School of Management, Jiangsu University 301 Xuefu Road, Jingkou Qu, Zhenjiang Shi, Jiangsu Sheng, People’s Republic of China
Purpose: The purpose of the present study was twofold. First, this study examined the relationships of work alienation with explorative learning and exploitative learning. Second, the study tested the role of emotional exhaustion as a mediator of the relationships of work alienation with explorative learning and exploitative learning. Job Demands-Resources model was used as the underlying theoretical foundation to establish these relationships.
Methods: Two-source time-lagged data were collected from 225 middle-level managers and their 222 immediate supervisors in 87 Pakistani firms spanning different industries. Structural equation modeling and bootstrapping were used to test the hypothesized relationships,.
Results: The study revealed that work alienation is negatively related to both explorative learning and exploitative learning. Moreover, the study also established emotional exhaustion as a mechanism underlying the relationships work alienation with explorative learning and exploitative learning by showing that work alienation enhances emotional exhaustion, which, in turn, negatively influences both explorative learning and exploitative learning.
Conclusion: By conceptualizing and providing empirical evidence of the negative relationships of work alienation with explorative learning and exploitative learning, both directly and via emotional exhaustion, the study signified some of the important but largely ignored dynamics of the employment relationship within the current regime of organizational structures. The findings suggest that the managers’ sensed estrangement from work and work context need to be addressed, as it can exhaust them emotionally and hinder their search and acquisition of new knowledge and competencies.
Keywords: work alienation, emotional exhaustion, explorative learning, exploitative learning, Job Demands-Resources model
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