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New job crafting book chapter

Maria Tims and Caroline Knight have just published a book chapter which highlights how job crafting can help individuals change aspects of their work for the better, including better health, well-being, and performance.

Job crafting refers to proactive, self-initiated strategies workers can engage in to change their work tasks, roles, and relationships. These include taking on projects of interest, looking for training to develop a particular skill, and problem-solving with a colleague.

Intervention studies have shown that developing job crafting in workers through workshops, goal-setting and hands-on practical tasks can increase the amount of job crafting that people do at work. In particular, two studies have shown that job crafting interventions can not only change job crafting behaviours, but can improve work design. Van Wingerden et al. (2017) found performance feedback and opportunities for professional development to increase in a group who experienced training in job crafting, and Van den Heuvel et al. (2015) found that in weeks when individuals took part in more job crafting, they also experienced better developmental opportunities as well as supervisor feedback and support. These studies suggest that within the boundaries of their jobs, individuals can still make positive changes which improves their work design.

The chapter appears in Creating Psychologically Healthy Workplaces (2019), edited by Ronald J. Burke and Astrid M. Richardsen and provides an up-to-date review of the literature around how individuals can take responsibility for their own development, employability and job design through job crafting. The concepts of job design and job crafting are introduced and explained before reviewing the evidence for the impact of job crafting on individual development. Evidence from the increasing number of intervention studies forms a particular focus, with their theoretical superior ability to effect change and determine causality. Theoretical implications and directions for future research are highlighted, followed by practical recommendations which workers can use to develop themselves in the workplace, and which organizations can use to help support the development of their workers.

Happy job crafting!

References

  1. Van den Heuvel, M., Demerouti, E. and Peeters, M.C.W. (2015). The job crafting intervention: Effects on job resources, self-efficacy, and affective well-being. Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology, 88, 511–32.
  2. Van Wingerden, J., Bakker, A.B. and Derks, D. (2017). The longitudinal impact of a job crafting intervention. European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology, 26, 107–19.