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Internal auditor burnout: an examination of behavioral consequences

Advances in Accounting Behavioral Research

ISBN: 978-0-76231-353-2, eISBN: 978-1-84950-448-5

Publication date: 14 July 2006


The burnout condition of employees – characterized by three interrelated symptoms of emotional exhaustion, reduced personal accomplishment and depersonalization – is a well-known phenomenon in psychology and several applied business disciplines. Following persistent recognition in the practice community, academic recognition of this topic has begun to appear in the accounting literature. Using a measure of burnout developed for boundary-spanning positions, this paper shows that burnout among internal auditors is a serious concern. Results offer evidence that the burnout condition is directly related to several of the important behavioral and attitudinal outcomes in internal accounting practice. In order to provide greater clarity for future research, this study offers a separate treatment of the three dimensions of burnout, two very different organizational commitment constructs and two turnover directions. Implications for the management of human resources in this area are included.


Fogarty, T.J. and Kalbers, L.P. (2006), "Internal auditor burnout: an examination of behavioral consequences", Arnold, V., Clinton, B.D., Luckett, P., Roberts, R., Wolfe, C. and Wright, S. (Ed.) Advances in Accounting Behavioral Research (Advances in Accounting Behavioural Research, Vol. 9), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 51-86.



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