Why do workers feel “tied” to their mobile devices? And is this a bad thing?
In an iLEAD-funded study that was conducted in 2013 at a multispecialty group practice and healthcare provider of a large Midwestern teaching hospital, Drs. Jenny Hoobler (UIC) and Wendy Casper (University of Texas at Arlington), and Morgan Wilson (Mount St. Mary’s University), discovered that workers with
- Strong relational identities (“My close relationships are an important reflection of who I am”)
- A higher drive to manage their impression with others (“Stay at work late so people know I am hard working”)
- Higher levels of conscientiousness (“efficient; organized”)
Were the ones who felt the most psychologically and physically dependent on their mobile communication devices.
The more responsive workers were to smartphone interruptions from work while not working, the more they reported
- Higher job stress
- Greater work‐to-family conflict (the job interfering with their personal life), which decreased their career satisfaction; and the more their family members reported
- Work-to-family conflict. Which employees were the most likely to respond to a smartphone interruption from work while not at work?
- Workers with the highest workloads
- Those with the strongest work identities (“I invest a large part of myself in my work”).