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Analysis And Discussion: Work Overload Lowers Job Satisfaction (Dissertation Sample)


It was a continuation of a dissertation on the impact of work overload on job satisfaction among employees. i was required to write the discussion and recommendation chapters

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5.0 Introduction
The findings of the study were consistent with those of Harris et al., (2013) that work overload is associated with both positive and negative outcomes on employees on job satisfaction. These outcomes can play a critical role in implementing strategies to avert them. Three major themes emerged from this study; work overload may lower employee job satisfaction, may boost employee job satisfaction or may not have an effect on employee job satisfaction. This chapter analyses and discusses the findings under the three main themes.
5.1 Work overload lowers job satisfaction
The study revealed that work overload in itself may not have a direct impact on job satisfaction but the physiological and physical effects of work overload affect employee job satisfaction. It was established that work overload is generally stressful to employees when they are asked to carry out more tasks that exceed their human capacities or that are not in their job descriptions. The findings were similar to the study by Osman (2013) who established that millions of employees in the United Kingdom are dissatisfied with their work because of the stress resulting from work overload. The stress results from the demands on employees to execute more duties within a short spun of time. These demands are often accompanied by threats such as dismissal or other disciplinary actions in case the employees fail to beat their deadlines. Work overload also lowers job satisfaction when employees suffer from frequent stress related sicknesses and therefore forced to take sick leaves all the time. Stress, resulting from work overload, causes illnesses such as heart diseases, high blood pressure and depression which cost employees more money to treat and also cost them their precious time that they would spend working and improving their skills. This eventually lowers the satisfaction that employees have with their jobs. Most of them opt to change their jobs or quit in totality to focus on their deteriorating health. Stress also leads to feelings of being unwanted or undervalued among employees. Work overload is the genesis of such feelings which undermine the satisfaction that employees have for their jobs. Their morale to keep working for the organisation drops hence their commitment to their jobs.
Work overload also leads to fatigue among employees which then lowers job satisfaction. Work overload requires higher energy input when employees are required to work for longer house or do carry out tons and tons of work. It is physically exhausting. This exhaustion does not augur well with the morale of employees and their commitment to keep working. Additionally, fatigue may also lower their productivity at work which may further compound their problems. Employees are more motivated to work when they perform better in their jobs because better performance at work has rewards such as promotions, good work relations, allowances among others. On the other hand, poor performance at work has punishments such as dismissal, demotions and lack of allowances. When employees are fatigued due to both qualitative and quantitative work overload, they are likely to perform poorly at work because they may not have the energy required for optimal performance. Poor performance will attract punishments at work. This de-motivates them and makes them and lowers their job satisfaction. When organisations have fewer employees, work overload becomes the norm rather than the exception, leading to fatigue. In such instances, employers have high expectations from their employees which are not often met due to exhaustion, hence low job satisfaction. Fatigue may also result to illnesses such as chronic fatigue disease or kidney stones, which are costly in terms of finances and valuable time. All these lowers job satisfaction.
Work-family conflict is another effect of work overload that lowers job satisfaction. When employees spend too much time at their work places, they do not have sufficient time for their families. Workers who are parents are particularly affected because they will neglect their parental or marital responsibilities. This causes conflicts between work and families. Employees often grapple with the decision of whether to focus on their careers or their families. The strain that work overload causes on the families of employees lowers the satisfaction with their jobs. Some employees work for the betterment of their families. Jobs are often meant to guarantee a good life to the families of employees but when the same job causes a strain on their families, they become dissatisfied with them. The findings are similar to those of Allen (2015), who found out that work overload makes employees to be torn between their jobs and their work. Employees can choose to devote their time and effort to the requirements of either family or work roles. Either way, decisions have consequences. An employee who decided to devote to work requirements will have family issues such as quarrels, fallouts and even divorce. Similarly, the employees who dedicate their time at family responsibilities at the expense of work requirements will have trouble with the management (Allen, 2015, p.90). Such employees could be demoted or even get fired for the failure of meeting the work requirements presented by work overload.
Personal life –work conflict is also a consequence of work overload that lowers job satisfaction. Employees are humans who have other lives in the social sphere apart from their jobs. While some of them may not have family commitments, they still need enough time and energy for their personal lives. Work overload makes employees spend more time at work at the expense of their personal lives. This may affect their social lives by straining friendships or making such employees to be detached from the world. Employees have an obligation to the larger community as a whole where they may be expected to take part in community building activities, social events, and entertainment among others. Work overload undermines these aspects of their personal lives. When this happens, it lowers their morale and satisfaction with their jobs. In the present day work place, the probability of finding young employees or millenials is high. Millenials are energetic and aggressive social beings who want to have enough time for their personal lives, especially the social bit. Most of them would want to have as much fun as they can and also nurture their young relationships. They are therefore easily affected by work overload especially when it affects their personal lives. Most of them are likely to change their jobs to get those that would guarantee them enough social space.
5.2 Work overload increases job satisfaction
The present study determined that work overload can boost job satisfaction especially if employees are adequately compensated. Remuneration is one of the main motivations for employees to work. Employees often quit their jobs in search for better paying ones. When employees are well paid for the more hours they spend at work, they will be more satisfied with their work. Additionally, when they compensated for any extra tasks assigned to them, they will be more satisfied with their jobs. Many employees look for secondary sources of income apart from their main jobs. They leave their places of work after carrying out their normal duties to go and engage in other economic activities to supplement their income. Therefore, when work overload is paid for, it becomes a substitute for the extra activities that employees take part in to earn more income. For those who do not have other extra sources of income, work overload can increase their satisfaction with their jobs if it is paid for because it will grant them an opportunity to earn more income. Respondents in this study stated that they would easily cope with work overload if they were adequately compensated for it, an indication that work overload could actually increase job satisfaction but only if it is paid for. This is especially true for employees who have other income generating activities. Additionally, work overload could increase job satisfaction if it is used as a yardstick for promotions and other rewards. These findings were similar to those of Sales(1970,p.31) who established that work overload could have positive impacts such as increased job satisfaction and performance if employees were compensated well for their extra work through both financial and non financial benefits.
Wilful participation in work overload was also found to have a positive effect on job satisfaction among employees. Employees indicated that they would feel more appreciated and satisfied with their jobs if it was made optional and if only they were requested to work overtime or take up more tasks than prescribed in their jobs. Employees need to feel valued and appreciated by their employers. According to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, human beings have an innate need to feel wanted, loved and appreciated. When this need is met, human beings feel more motivated and satisfied with their lives. Similarly, employees will be more satisfied with their jobs if employers treat them with respect and request them to work longer or carry out more duties. Employees will readily contribute to the success of the organisation if the employers treat them as important members of their team. This may include requesting them, giving them reasons why they have to work longer or carry out more duties and telling them in advance for them to make the necessary preparations. This will make employees feel needed by the organisation and will easily cope with work overload. If employees are compelled to work for longer hours, threatened to do so or ambushed without prior information that would make them make the necessary ...
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