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Happy managers perform better says new book

Dubai, February 17, 2008

A new book, co-written by a management professor from the University of Wollongong in Dubai (UOWD), has provided fresh insights into the age-old conundrum in management – do happy managers perform better?

The book “Happy-Performing Managers: The Impact of Affective Wellbeing and Intrinsic Job Satisfaction in the Workplace” has been co-written by lead author Dr Peter Hosie, Associate Professor at UOWD, with Peter Sevastos of Curtin University of Technology, Australia and Cary Cooper CBE of Lancaster University Management School, UK, with a forward by Ronald Burke from York University.

The book cites an Australian study of 19 organisations providing strong evidence to support the existence of a clear relationship between managers’ job-related psychological wellbeing, intrinsic job satisfaction and performance.

Middle managers were surveyed across a variety of public agencies, and private and multinational companies in Western Australia.

“Clearly, we were able to show that a positive psychological disposition and intrinsic job satisfaction with a job is a great motivator for people to perform,” said Prof. Hosie.

“I wrote the book after working for and observing many happy and miserable managers. Happy managers seemed to be more effective compared to their miserable compatriots, especially at motivating employees. Since the main role of managers is to achieve organisation objectives through people, this is an important issue for all organisations to address. My research provides rigorous and specific data to support the proposition that a happy managers perform better,” added Prof. Hosie.

The book prescribes how managers’ jobs might be changed to enhance or avoid a decline in happiness because managers’ performance is impacting as never before on organisational productivity and the economic prosperity of nation-states.

Extraordinary shifts in the global corporate environment mean managers’ ‘personal troubles’ have now become ‘public concerns’.

The book places an emphasis on the emerging movement of Positive Organisational Scholarship (POS), as a means of using the research to discover ways organisations can improve people’s psychological wellbeing and in particular offers advice on how changes in affective wellbeing and job satisfaction can assist in identifying what can be done to promote a healthier and more productive work environment for managers.

According to Prof Hosie, POS has an affirmative bias towards the health model’s capacity to discover and maintain ways that organisations can improve people’s working lives.

From this perspective, employee health and wellbeing are seen in terms of the presence of the potential for growth, optimism, contentment and actualisation – not simply as the absence of dysfunctional behaviour. Prof. Hosie believes the time has come to move away from the negative forms of psychology (based on a ‘deficit model’) and affirm managers’ future by embracing the ‘happy-performing managers’ proposition.

Prof. Hosie intends to replicate the Happy-Performing Managers study internationally, with particular emphasis on the Middle East.

Happy-Performing Managers is invaluable to academics, postgraduate students, human resource practitioners, executives and managers who are interested in gaining a deeper understanding of the factors that influence human performance in the workplace.

The book has been published by Edward Elgar Publishing, UK, and can be ordered online. – TradeArabia News Service




Tags: Middle East | UOWD | workplace |

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