142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition

Annual Meeting Recordings are now available for purchase

I can't take it anymore!: Employing a multilevel model of workplace forgiveness to reduce emotional labor in public health agencies

142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition (November 15 - November 19, 2014): http://www.apha.org/events-and-meetings/annual
Wednesday, November 19, 2014 : 8:50 AM - 9:10 AM

Amy Smart , Health Sciences, Western Illinois University, Macomb, IL
Maureen Bezold, PhD, MPH , Department of Health Sciences, Western Illinois University, Macomb, IL
Major changes in public health due to funding shortfalls, increased emphasis on accreditation, and the passage of the Affordable Care Act create a need for even higher interdependence among agencies and employees as they work to achieve their goals. For public health agencies this results in critical challenges, staff reductions, and fewer resources to protect residents health and well-being. This increase on daily work demands, and complying with societal, occupational and organizational norms creates a significant emotional toll on workers. Emotional labor is understood as the effort required to manage one’s emotions in the workplace. The goal is to create positive interpersonal exchange among workers and the individuals they serve. This may become a challenge for workers when automatic behavioral impulses are different from sanctioned emotional displays and when resources simply are not available to accomplish all that needs to be done. The significant effort and inhibition associated with emotional labor can lead to increased stress, burnouts, emotional exhaustion, substance abuse, depression, and decreased job satisfaction. A multilevel model of workplace forgiveness has implications that may be useful in minimizing the amount of emotional labor required among public health workers. Through building a culture that values restorative justice, compassion, and temperance, the Workplace Forgiveness Model enables organizations to craft an environment that facilitates a more prosocial response to conflict. Additional constructs include leader attributes, employee support, and mindfulness training programs, all of which contribute to improved organizational conflict management and its associated individual-level behaviors.

Learning Areas:

Administration, management, leadership

Learning Objectives:
Define emotional labor. Explain the levels included in the workplace forgiveness model. Assess the usefulness of the model for public health workplaces.

Keyword(s): Workplace, Workforce Development

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a graduate student engaged in research with my mentor. My mentor has over 20 years of experience teaching and doing research in organization management.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.