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Chapter 4

BUS 272 Chapter 4: Workplace Emotions, Attitudes, and Stress

Business Administration
Course Code
BUS 272
Sam Ajit Thiara

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BUS 272 CH. 4 – Workplace Emotions, Attitudes, and Stress
Emotions in the Workplace
Emotions: physiological (internal bodily changes ex. Increased heart rate when nervous),
behavioral, psychological episodical experiences directed towards someone/something. It gets
our bodies in a state of readiness (ex. Increased heart rate prepared to engage in fight/flight)
- Cognition (logical thinking) isn’t the only thing that affects our behavior as previously
thought, emotions affect them too
- We care about emotions because they impact a lot of what we do in the workplace
! Types of Emotions
- 2 common features of emotions
1) valence (core affect): Should the event be avoided/approached
2) activation: certain emotions are activated more than others, some emotional
experiences are subtle others not, regardless they make us more aware of
the environment
! Emotions, Attitudes, and Behavior
- attitudes: your beliefs, feelings, and behavioral intentions towards someone or
something. Attitudes are an evaluation of someone/something vs. emotions which are
just events that happen w/o your input
o beliefs: are you established perceptions which you believe is true it can be
o feelings: your conscious +/- evaluation of something. Do you like/dislike it
o behavioral intention: your motivation to engage in a behavior
- your belief of a situation (if it’s good/bad) impacts how you feel about the situation
(like/dislike) so you behave a certain way ! all of this is = attitude towards the situation
- there are problems with this model:
o people w/ same belief form different feelings towards something. One person
likes being pushed to work hard the other not so much
o people w/ same feelings form different behavioral intention. 2 employees dislike
their boss one reports him, other finds a job
o people w/ same behavioral intentions behave differently. 2 employees intend to
quit but only 1 quits b/c the other didn’t find a job
o differences results from different experiences, personal values etc.
! How Emotions Influence Attitudes & Behavior
- our brain unconsciously & automatically tags incoming information with an emotion, from
this our feelings & attitudes are influenced by the emotional markers on the information
they send good/bad signals
- difficult decisions are the result when the cognitive side doesn’t match the emotional
! Generating Positive Emotions at work
- by “having fun” at work, it makes the more difficult tasks at work more enjoyable can
offset negative emotions associated with the difficult task
! Cognitive Dissonance
- cognitive dissonance: emotional experience when your beliefs, feelings, behavior don’t
match up, your need/want needs to be consistent produces this feeling
o ex. Buying expensive whiteboards when you believe in being frugal
- reversing the action, changing your belief & feeling, emphasize the benefits of your
action can be ways to reduce cognitive dissonance
! Emotions & Personality
- people’s personality influences the emotions they feel ex. Some people experience more
positive emotions naturally
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- although personality can have an affect on emotion, the situation itself has a stronger
influence on attitude & behavior
Managing Emotions at Work
Emotional labour: effort, planning & control to express the “proper” emotions when interacting
with one another ex. Hiding your frustration when working with a difficult customer
! Emotional Display Norms Across Cultures
- there are differences in the extent to which it is socially acceptable to display your true
- in some cultures, (japan, Austria, Ethiopia) people are expected to be more subdued vs.
in Russia, Egypt, Spain to name a few, they are encouraged to display their true
! Emotional Dissonance
- emotional tension produced when the emotions people are required to show (at their job)
are different from what they actually feel (surface acting)
- this leads to higher stress on the job, & produce psychological separation from self
- it is also hard to display the proper emotions without look fake
- one can overcome these problems by viewing surface acting being part of their job,
dealing with angry customers is a token of their skill & professionalism
- or one can engage in deep acting, viewing reality different which allows display of the
proper emotions naturally ex. Hostile customer result from their anxiety easier for flight
attendant to display compassion & patience. Required EI
! Emotional Intelligence (EI)
- a set of abilities to recognize & regulate own emotion & emotion of other people 4 main
1) Awareness of our own emotion: understanding our own emotions & being
able to detect subtle changes & what they mean
2) Management of our own emotions: generating/suppressing emotions, (deep
acting). Ex. Trying not feel angry/frustrated when things don’t go our way
3) Awareness of others’ emotions: ability to perceive & understand emotions of
other people (=empathy: being sensitive to other’s emotions).
4) Management of others’ emotions: ex. Consoling those who feel sad,
managing dysfunctional emotions among staff
- 4 dimensions form a hierarchy
- awareness of own emotion on the bottom!management of others’ emotions on top
! Emotional Intelligence Outcomes & Training
- EI is helpful in jobs that have more social interaction, many jobs have some aspect of
social interaction, so for the most part EI is useful
- Employees can also be improved by being aware of the concept, where you stand in
how emotionally intelligent you are, & coaching
Job Satisfaction
- Job satisfaction: person’s evaluation of his/her job & work context. An appraisal
(assessment of something/someone) of their work environment & emotional experiences
at work. One’s collective attitudes about aspects of the job
- Job satisfaction differs in the cultural context, & economic conditions
! Job satisfaction & work Behavior
- being satisfied is a major part of what determines an employee’s behavior and so
employers strive to keep employees motivated
- the exit-voice-loyalty-neglect model (EVLN) is a useful way to understand
consequences of job dissatisfaction. 4 employee reactions
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