Fear of Losing Jobs Affects Employee Performance

Though you probably didn't need scientific research to tell you this, a new study shows that fear of job loss causes workers to feel dissatisfied and less committed to their jobs. The study also shows that blue-collar and white-collar workers react differently to job insecurity.

The research , which polled more than 300 workers in Spain and was conducted by the psychology department at the University of Valencia,  shows that insecurity at work is directly and negatively linked to satisfaction in work and life and also affects performance and commitment. Furthermore, the research reveals that the consequences of this insecurity differ in accordance with the occupational group they work in.

The feeling that one is going to lose their job worsens satisfaction levels in other areas of life, such as family, health, financial circumstances and the work-free time balance, the research found.

As the fear of unemployment increases, "the level of work insecurity rises, people are less satisfied with their personal, work and family lives and they are less committed to their work," Amparo Caballer, a co-author of the study, told the Spanish news agency SINC.

This study also revealed that the consequences of job insecurity are different in each occupational group, with some groups reacting more negatively to perceiving insecurity at work. When there is uncertainty about employment, blue-collar workers "are less satisfied with life and they work less productively than the other groups studied," Caballer said. White-collar workers display the most dissatisfaction at times of instability.

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