Work-family interference, emotional labor and burnout

A.J. Montgomery, E. Panagopolou, M. de Wildt, E. Meenks

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

93 Citations (Scopus)


The purpose of the current study is to examine the relationship between emotional display rules/job focused labor, work‐family interference (WFI) and burnout among a sample of workers in a Dutch governmental organization.

The research is a cross‐sectional study of 174 workers from a Dutch governmental organization.

Emotional display rules and job‐focused labor were related to burnout and psychosomatic complaints. More specifically, the need to hide negative emotions and engage in surface acting was related to negative outcomes. In addition, WFI partially mediated the relationship between the hiding of negative emotion/surface acting and burnout/psychosomatic complaints.

Research limitations/implications
The present study is cross‐sectional and thus the postulated relationships cannot be interpreted causally.

Practical implications
In terms of training and/or interventions, there is a need for the worksite to provide structured opportunities for employees to decompress from the emotional demanding aspects of their jobs.

Emotional labor has been rarely examined as an antecedent of WFI. In addition, while emotional labor has been studied with individuals in the service sector, it has been rarely examined among individuals whose jobs are highly ceremonial in nature.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)36-51
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Managerial Psychology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2006
Externally publishedYes


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