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Title: Work engagement, disengagement and meaningfulness : achieving the simultaneous benefits of high work performance and individual well being
Author: Long, Trevor
Awarding Body: University of Reading
Current Institution: University of Reading
Date of Award: 2013
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This thesis reports research into work engagement, disengagement and meaningfulness. The research commenced with a general proposition that significant progress could be made m designing work that enhanced performance and employee well-being concurrently. Literature on engagement provided the foundation on which to explore these phenomena, and identified the experience of meaningfulness as a key factor in engagement, but which was not clearly understood. Adopting a constructivist perspective and interpretivist paradigm, underpinned by Personal Construct Theory, the research explored the inner experience of engagement. An iterative approach elicited qualitative data from respondents in a service organisation over several phases of interviews, punctuated by analyses and the development of new techniques as the research progressed. Confirming much of the literature, findings also developed new insights which, contrary to current thinking, indicated that engagement. and disengagement are different constructs and that both could therefore be experienced simultaneously, within the same activity. Subconstructs underpinning engagement and disengagement further revealed meaningfulness, as a dynamic tension between stability and growth, to play a key role in engagement and disengagement experiences. Implications for management and leadership, and for self-management, are discussed. It 1S proposed that the management of engagement and of disengagement require some distinctly different fundamental approaches. A technique is proposed for use in analysis, and the management, of engagement-related experiences, as a means of enhancing meaningfulless, well-being and work performance. The research contributes to theory, to practice and to methodology
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available