The Dirty Workers Among Us: The Intervening Role of Job Crafting and the Moderating Role of Leader Member Exchange in The Evaluation of Self Determination & Work Engagement

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This study evaluates job crafting as a strategy the hospital may utilize with guest services personnel to reduce turnover, increase work engagement, and improve the quality of patient care. Employee turnover is costly for organizations, as measured in dollars; however, turnover costs associated with guest services in a healthcare setting are problematic as they could go beyond financial implications. Since these workers ensure cleanliness standards are met and take care of dietary needs, patient care could be negatively impacted, leading to significant life and monetary cost. This study hypothesizes that individuals who job craft do so proactively, which leads to work engagement. Though job crafting is a self-initiated action taken by employees, this study postulates that leader involvement impacts employee self-determination, job crafting activity, and work engagement. The study is a non-experimental, quantitative, correlational field study, and the conceptual framework is grounded in Job Demand Resources Theory. The sample consists of hospital cleaners and food and nutrition specialists in a North Texas regional hospital. Participants were surveyed using a 40-item questionnaire comprised of the Utrecht Work Engagement Scale (UWES), the Work Extrinsic and Intrinsic Motivation Scale (WEIMS), the Job Crafting Questionnaire Scale (JCQ), and the Leader-Member Exchange Multi Dimensional Measurement Scale. Moderating and mediating effects were assessed using the statistical software package PROCESS macro for SPSS®. Each job crafting factor was assessed individually to understand the uniqueness and interactions of each with self-determination, work engagement, and LMX. The results suggest a significant positive relationship between self-determination, relational and cognitive job crafting, and work engagement for dirty workers. Subsequently, only cognitive job crafting was found to be a full mediator of self-determination and work engagement, while relational job crafting was not. No support was found for LMX as a moderator; however, its inclusion covers a gap in the literature. In conclusion, the results of this study reflect that an individual's ability to reframe their work environment is paramount to achieving work engagement.

work engagement, dirty workers, self-determination, job crafting, LMX, motivation, proactivity, JDR model