Work engagement among bus drivers in Zimbabwe : the role of employee well-being, job demands and resources.
Muzvidziwa, Rutendo Faith.
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This study was carried out in order to gain an understanding of work engagement among bus drivers in Zimbabwe. The study seeks to assess work engagement, job satisfaction, happiness and burnout in terms of relationships, significant differences and lived experiences among bus drivers in Harare (Zimbabwe). Further investigation is done to determine whether job demands and job resources are strong predictors for the relationship between work engagement, happiness, job satisfaction and burnout. Thus findings in this study are significant in that they provide insight into the well-being of bus drivers and its impact on employee work engagement. The study entails a mixed method to research. For the qualitative part of this study semi structured interviews were be used in data collection. Questionnaires are used for the quantitative part of the study. The research instruments were based on the stated objectives as a guide of what to include and leave in the research instrument. For the Questionnaires, the shortened version of the Utrecht Work Engagement Scale (UWES), the Minnesota Satisfaction Questionnaire (MSQ), the Work-related Flow inventory (WOLF), the Oldenburg Burnout Inventory (OLBI) and the Job Demands Resources Scale and is adopted. Results showed practically and statistically significant positive relationships between variables of work engagement, work happiness, job satisfaction and job resources. However, burnout had practically and statistically significant negative relationships, of medium effect, with variables of work engagement, work happiness and job satisfaction. A possible explanation for this is that when employees withdraw mentally as a result of burnout, their work engagement levels will decrease. Job demands and job resources are strong predictors of work engagement, work happiness, job satisfaction and burnout. A possible explanation for the results is the organisational citizenship and commitment among the employees. Results indicated that all the demographic variables (such as different age groups, education level attained, tenure, bus ranks and marital status) had a significant difference with regards to total work engagement, job satisfaction, overall happiness, overall job resources and overall burnout. The bus drivers were engaged, happy and satisfied with their jobs in spite of the stressors. A possible explanation of the results could be the buffering effect job resources had on job demands. The tickets from the police’, peak hours’ and bad weather were sum of the stressors leading to burnout. However, positive attitudes and stress coping strategies led the bus drivers to be happy in spite of the stressors. Themes such as good working environment, socialising at work and supportive co- workers emerged on job resources. A limitation of the present study is its cross-sectional character. However, despite these limitations, the present findings have important implications for both future research and practice. For instance future research should be longitudinal. Furthermore future research efforts should focus on the different aspects of job demands and resources inclusive of rewards, work overload, growth opportunities, social support, organisational support, job security and job advancement. This information is useful because it will allow managers and organisations to adjust jobs, training, and the work environment based on the factors that contribute the most to workplace happiness, job satisfaction and work engagement. Results in this study suggest that recovery from burnout help individuals to cope with job demands and to create new resources. These findings suggest that organisations should provide employees with facilities to recover and promote the development of leisure activities to help them overcome the daily strains of work.
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