Emotions at Work: What Emotions Dominate Working Lives?
There has been extensive research on peoples' experience of emotions at work. In particular, Weiss and Cropanzano's (1996) affective events theory has provided the research community with a model that enables emotions to be identified as influencing specific events in the workplace. While this model deals with the generation of emotion in response to specific events we are yet to understand what recent affective memories individuals have of their workplace. This is significant as these memories can contribute to an overall affective climate within organisations. In this study, data were collected from 365 individuals across 16 workplaces. Respondents were asked to recall emotions they had experienced, or witnessed others experiencing in the workplace over the previous two weeks. In total 1627 emotions were reported across the sample, with 630 of these emotions being positive and 997 being negative. These results were in line with our expectations that respondents would overwhelmingly remember negative emotions over positive emotions. Additionally, the respondents across the workplaces experienced similar discrete emotions with the major negative emotions being experienced being frustration (217), followed by anger (99), and the major positive emotion experienced being happiness (155). Implications and future directions for research will be discussed.
Third Brisbane Symposium on Emotions and Worklife: Program and Book of Abstracts