|Year : 2017 | Volume
| Issue : 2 | Page : 115-120
Prediction of employee's general health by occupational and organizational factors in Social Security Organization in city of Isfahan
Narges Sadat Mortazavi, Farzaneh Dabbashi, Aboulghasem Nouri
Department of Psychology, University of Isfahan, Educational Sciences and Psychology Faculty, Isfahan, Iran
|Date of Web Publication||26-Jul-2017|
University of Isfahan, Educational Sciences and Psychology Faculty, Psychology Group, Isfahan
Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None
Aim: The aim of this study was a prediction of employee's general health by occupational and organizational factors in Social Security Organization in the city of Isfahan. Methods: The design of research was correlational, and statistical population consisted a total of employees of five major branches of Social Security Organization in the city of Isfahan in the year 2014. The sample was selected by applying stratified random sampling and consisted 210 people. Used tools of the research were general health questionnaire (Goldberg, 1972), burnout questionnaire (Maslach and Jackson, 1981), perceived organizational support questionnaire (Rhoades and Eisenberger, 2002), and job stress questionnaire (Parker and Decotiis, 1983). The data analyzed by Pearson coefficient and stepwise regression analysis. Results: The results showed general health had negative significance relationships with job stress and burnout (P < 0.01) and positive significance relationship with perceived organizational support (P < 0.01). In addition, the results of regression analysis were shown that respectively job stress, burnout and perceived organizational support can predict 85% of employees general health (P < 0.01). Discussion: Taking the importance of general health of the employees and the results of the study regarding negative relationship with stress and burnout and its positive relationship with perceived organizational support, the organizations authorities can arrange plans to decrease stress and burnout; further, the organizations can pave the way for more health among their employees through supporting them.
Keywords: Burnout, general health, job stress, perceived organizational support
|How to cite this article:|
Mortazavi NS, Dabbashi F, Nouri A. Prediction of employee's general health by occupational and organizational factors in Social Security Organization in city of Isfahan. Int J Educ Psychol Res 2017;3:115-20
|How to cite this URL:|
Mortazavi NS, Dabbashi F, Nouri A. Prediction of employee's general health by occupational and organizational factors in Social Security Organization in city of Isfahan. Int J Educ Psychol Res [serial online] 2017 [cited 2020 Jan 25];3:115-20. Available from: http://www.ijeprjournal.org/text.asp?2017/3/2/115/179064
| Introduction|| |
General health is one of the most important issues in industrial and organizational psychology especially in human relationships, and it doesn't just mean the loss of mental health, but it can also be considered as the ability to effectively react against various life experiences. The last definition of mental hygiene regarding general health is the following: “The balance state between the individual and the world around him/her, adaptation of the individual to the self and others and the coexistence between the individual and the environment.” General health is a fundamental need, and it is vital for the improvement of human's life quality. Enjoying these internal sources increases the individual's ability for his/her congruent growth despite adverse conditions and negative events. Despite great importance of health there are still different questions in case of effective factors on it and especially in organizations wherein the most effective factor on productivity is healthy and efficient manpower the need to attend to effective factors on the employees' health has much more importance. Occupational components are a category of effective factors on people's health. This finding is rooted in the relationship between life satisfaction and general health. The meaning of life satisfaction is the individual's attitude and general evaluation regarding his/her life totality and also life aspects such as family and occupational life and educational experience. Numerous studies have shown that the health directly relates to internal social factors of the job, and these factors play an important role in the health state and also in causing disease. In fact, work makes it possible for the people to enter a specific social environment, make a position through purposeful interaction with others and enjoy reciprocal support in a network of individual relations. The major part of people's life is spent in working environment while awake; therefore these kinds of job activities and work has a deeper effect on employees' mental and physical health and their whole life. Service jobs, due to the nature of work and organization and direct communication between employees and clients, leads to the individual's physical and mental exhaustion to higher extent, so it threatens the employees' general health more; hence investigating occupational and organizational factors affecting general health of service job employees (involving Social Security Organization) and consequently offering suggestions and techniques can have great importance.
According to the scientists of organizational behavior, if the interaction between the human and job and working environment disrupt because of any reason, it can cause the emergence of stress and the disorder in physical, physiologic and mental functions, and if this state continues it will be followed by job burnout. Job burnout is a common concept in job psychology, and it is applied to describe a type of discomfort in jobs that it's employee whereof have extensive communication with others such as people, clients, customers, and patients. Numerous studies have indicated that there is a significant relationship between job burnout and mental health. Turnipseed showed that there was a relationship between job burnout and job stress with mental health. Further, it has been determined in other studies that there is a significant relationship between job burnout and general health and its dimensions., According to Greenberg's theory, high job stress leads to job burnout and when the person experiences a high, continuous and uncontrolled stress in working environment it gradually causes job burnout due to the imbalance between working demand and supply. Job burnout has been mentioned as a related consequence of chronic stress in work. Job stress is a state resulting from a consistent reaction against events and job stimulants which sometimes causes mental-physical burden beyond individual's ability and it can create physical and mental disease. Stress affects human's activities adversely in different psychological, physical and family regard. Job stress is a very common and outstanding issue in various jobs and professions which threatens the employees' health and well-being in different forms. Available evidence shows that stress can affect the individual's health and important organizational consequences such as productivity too. In a study, Parslow et al. addressed investigating the effect of job position and the degree of job stress on general health of 806 government employees and concluded that job stress affects job position, general health and the state of welfare and well-being of the employee. The results of the various research show that working in stressful conditions leads to frequent absences, tendency to transfer and leaving the job, decrease of self-esteem, drug abuse, etc., According to it, the job stress can be assumed as one of the most important factors threatening the employees' general health. The results of very studies imply a relationship between people's job stress and general health.,,
Besides occupational factors, organizational factors can have a strong relationship with the employee's health. One of the organizational variables affecting health and ensuring the people that in difficult situations they can face the problems and overcome them is perceived organizational support. On the basis of Shore and Shore's (1995) perceived organizational support theory, the employee grow public beliefs regarding the extent to which the organization gives importance to participation and their well-being in order to perceive the organization's readiness to give reward to working attempts and meet social needs. Perceived organizational support, too, points to certainty about the organization's help in situ ations wherein the individual encounters stressful situations or the time he/she has problems effectively doing the job. Perceived organizational support provides the sources of social support for the employees, and it is a structure of social exchange. Mearns and Reader state that high levels of support at organizational level, reflects worry and the interest of management to the employees' well-being and health, and the employees consider the organizational support as a mechanism to cope with job stress. The results of some studies have shown that perceived organizational support and also social support relates to the employee's health., Further, in the study by Demiri et al. (2014) it was recognized that the perceived organizational stress can moderate the relationship between job stress and general health of the employees and associates to them.
Considering theoretical and research literature mentioned and job conditions and pressures which exist in different professions and threatens the employees' health and also the importance of employees' general health in the organization's maintenance, the aim of the present study was prediction of employee's general health by occupational and organizational factors in Social Security Organization in city of Isfahan. The research hypothesis includes: (1) Job stress can predict the employees' general health. (2) Burnout can predict the employees' general health. (3) Perceived organizational support can predict the employees' general health.
| Methods|| |
Participants and research design
The design of present research was correlational. The method of the present study was associative and its design was correlational. The statistical population included all employees working in five major branches of Social Security Organization in the city of Isfahan, who were 467 individuals. Every employee could participate in the study whatever their position. Two hundred and ten people of them were selected through Morgan sample size determination table via stratified random sampling. The number of distributed questionnaires was 210 from which 187 questionnaires were returned with return rate 89%. Forty-two percentage of the samples were female, and 58% were male, among whom 18.2% had a diploma, 20.5% were sophomores, 47.3% had BA, and 14% had MS degree. Moreover, their lowest service record 2.1% <5 years, and their highest service record 8.2% between 26 and 30 years.
General health questionnaire (Goldberg, 1972)
This questionnaire was developed by Goldberg, and it had 28 questions and measured four subscales of physical signs, anxiety, social function disorder, and depression. The scoring method is based on four points Likert scale (0 = never, to 3 = more than normal). Goldberg has reported the reliability coefficient 0.88 for the whole questionnaire and 0.66–0.85 for its subscales. The reliability of the questionnaire was examined and confirmed by Nourbala et al. in Iran. One example of the questions of this questionnaire is the following: “Have you ever felt that your body gets hot or cold?”
Job burnout questionnaire (Maslach and Jackson, 1981)
This questionnaire was developed by Maslach and Jackson , and it had 22 questions and measured three aspects of affective exhaustion, pessimism, and the lack of personal success. In this study, its 8-question abridged form has been applied. The scoring method is according to 6-point Likert scale (1 = never to 6 = every day). Faghihi et al. (2011) have reported the reliability coefficient 0.85, 0.82, and 0.79, respectively, for the aspects of affective exhaustion, pessimism, and the lack of personal success. One example of the questions is the following: “I feel dealing with clients all day long puts pressure on me.”
Questionnaire of perceived organizational support (Rhoades and Eisenberger, 2002)
This questionnaire is an 8-question abridged form which was developed by Rhoades and Eisenberger in 1986 and changed into abridged form by them in 2002. In this questionnaire, each question is scored in the form of 7-point Likert scale (1 = totally disagree to 7 = totally agree). Various studies have reported some evidence emphasizing the questionnaire's reliability., ArabZadegan(2012) reported its reliability coefficient 0.55 through correlation which exists between a general question wherein there is the gist of the questionnaire and the scale's total score which implies a suitable reliability. Zare(2012) reported 0.89 the internal reliability of this scale through Cronbach alpha coefficient. One example of its questions is the following: “The organization values my assistance aiming at its improvement.”
Questionnaire of vocational stress (Parker and Decotiis, 1983)
This questionnaire was developed by Parker and Decotiis,, and it is composed of 13 questions. The scoring method is according to 5-point Likert scale (1 = totally disagree to 6 = totally agree). Parker and Decotiis, have mentioned 0.54 its reliability coefficient. Demiri(2012) reported 0.90 its reliability coefficient. One example of its questions is the following: “I spend too much time at work; I can't see the forest for the trees.”
Method of executive and data analysis
In this study following the provision of the study preliminary measures and asking permission from the organization under study, the researchers made the sample members aware in case of research objectives and confidentiality of the responses to the questions, then the participants responded to the distributed questionnaires in the form of self-report. To analyze the data, Pearson correlation coefficient and stepwise regression analysis were used via Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) software - Version 21. In this study, the variable of general health has entered in regression analysis equation as the dependent variable and so have variables of job burnout, vocational stress, and perceived organizational support as a predictor variable.
| Results|| |
The findings in a case of demographic variables were described in the section of participants' features. In [Table 1], the descriptive statistics of research variables been given.
In order to avoid the employees' general health (dependent variable) through predictor variables of job burnout, job stress, and perceived organizational support, stepwise regression analysis was used the results whereof have been given in [Table 2].
|Table 2: Results of stepwise regression for predicting general health by predictor variables|
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The results of the stepwise regression in [Table 2] shows that job stress is able to predict general health with standard beta coefficient −0.587 (P < 0.01). Therefore the first hypothesis of the research is confirmed. Moreover, in the next step, the findings show that burnout, in the same way, is able to predict general health with standard beta coefficient −0.288 (P < 0.01), therefore the second hypothesis of the research is confirmed too. Afterward, the results of regression analysis shows that in the third step, perceived organizational support is able to predict general health with standard beta coefficient 0.143 (P < 0.01). Therefore the third hypothesis is confirmed. In other words, the results show that occupational and organizational factors includes job stress, burnout and perceived organizational support are able to predict the employees' general health and in whole, they predict 85% of the variance of employees' general health.
| Discussion and Conclusion|| |
The aim of this study was a prediction of employee's general health by occupational and organizational factors in Social Security Organization in the city of Isfahan. The dependent variable is the general health and predictor variables were job stress, job burnout, and perceived organizational support. The results of the study imply that job stress is able to predict employee's general health as a negative significant predictor [Table 2], and, therefore, the first hypothesis was confirmed. This result is along with the studies by La Dou, Parslow et al., Simmons and Nelson, Barzide et al. (2012) and Noorian et al. (2010).,,,,, According to Selye theory, stress is a nonspecific reaction of the organism to an external threat which can be created by various factors; the organism tries to defend itself by a set of physiologic reactions. Selye has named these reactions as general adaptation syndrome which includes three stages; the first stage is “warning reaction” which stimulates the organism through the physiologic and psychological changes to support itself against this threat, the second stage is “resistance” which is created by lingering stressors, the third stage is created due to lingering the second stage and decreasing the organism's adaptation power and energy against stressors, and in this stage the signs of health threat emerge in the form of physical, mental, and social disease (aspects of general health). Selye's theory well explains this finding of this study.
Moreover, the results of the study imply that burnout is able to predict the employee's general health as a negative significant predictor [Table 2] and, therefore, the second hypothesis of the study is confirmed too. These findings are along with the studies by Nastizaie et al. and Beshlide et al., One possible reason is the fact that job burnout is considered, as a related result to stress, among its mental consequences and greatly endangers one important aspect of general health, that is its mental aspect. According to the definition of the World Health Organization, general health is composed of different aspects one of which is a psychological aspect. Job burnout is followed by signs of emotional tiredness, alienation and the decrease of functionality and involves physical signs such as a headache and nausea. If continued, all of these signs will seriously affect people's general health and finally it leads to the people's mental disability.
Further, the results of the study imply that perceived organizational support is able to predict employee's general health as a positive significant predictor [Table 2], and, therefore, the third hypothesis of the study is confirmed too. This result is along with the findings of the study by Kiani and Khodabakhsh, SalehNia et al. and Demiri et al.,, According to Mearns and Reader's theory, the organization which provides high levels of support to the employees, has greater concern and interest to the employees' well-being and health and since enjoys the healthier employees. Besides, one of its other reasons is that the employees use organizational support as a mechanism for getting along with the vocational stress and this feeling that the organization gives importance to them can decrease their stress so can help to promotion to employee general health.
As the final result, results shown that vocational stress, job burnout, and perceived organizational support, totally, and along each other are able to explain a major proportion of the employees' general health [Table 2]. There was not any study which is exactly congruent with the present study; however, it can be considered a starting point in multidimensional studies in the case of the employees' health. The significant point is that a very great proportion of the employees' health (80%) at first is explained by the variable of vocational stress. Taking this point and many results of the studies into account regarding the role of vocational stress as an infrastructure and the starter of other vocational disease (according to Greenberg), the necessity of attending the vocational stress is made clear more than ever. The authorities and managers of service organizations like Social Security Organization should decrease the employee's job stress through making a correct and suitable relationship with them and supporting them and creating an appropriate environment to do professional activities. Further, regarding the fact that in this study, the role of perceived organizational support on the employees' general health was determined, so its role should not be ignored. Therefore, the authorities of Social Security Organizations can provide the employees' support for their salary status reform and make their occupational security in order to increase general health and the employees' optimization taking it into account.
Taking the findings of the study and considering the fact that the structures of vocational stress, job burnout, and perceived organizational support, all in all, can explain 85% of the variance of the employees' health, a large part of thought capitals, human resources policies, studies and interventions of occupational medicine can be concentrated on the programs of the employees' vocational stress decrease and consequently the decrease of job burnout and also increasing organizational support. Future researchers are suggested to do a study in this regard. Moreover, these predictor variables should not be assumed solely and the role of other factors should not be neglected. Therefore, more variables should be recognized. Further, it is suggested that the present study be conducted in a production organization and its result compared to that of the present study (which has been conducted at a service organization). The current study has two major limitations which should be done taking those generalized; first, the present study has been conducted on the employees of a service organization and should be conscious about generalizing the results of the employees' production organizations. Second, it is an associative study with prediction design and is not correct to make causal inference from the results; therefore, it is advised for the predictor variables to be seen as those playing major role in prediction, not a definite cause of the presence or lack of health.
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Conflicts of interest
There are no conflicts of interest.
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[Table 1], [Table 2]