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Work‐related depression in the hotel industry: a study in the United Arab Emirates

Osman M. Karatepe (School of Tourism and Hospitality Management, Eastern Mediterranean University, Gazimagusa, Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, Turkey)
Ladan Zargar Tizabi (Shahin Parvaz Sama Air Travel and Tour Co., Tehran, Iran)

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management

ISSN: 0959-6119

Article publication date: 12 July 2011

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to develop and test a model, which examines work‐related depression among frontline hotel employees. Specifically, the model examines emotional exhaustion as a full mediator of the effects of positive affectivity and intrinsic motivation on depression. The model also investigates the interaction of intrinsic motivation and positive affectivity on emotional exhaustion and depression.

Design/methodology/approach

Data were gathered from Arab frontline employees in the international five‐star chain hotels of Dubai in the United Arab Emirates. A total number of 135 self‐administered questionnaires were collected.

Findings

The results of hierarchical multiple regression analysis demonstrates that employees with positive affectivity and intrinsic motivation experience less emotional exhaustion. The results reveal that emotional exhaustion fully mediates the impacts of positive affectivity and intrinsic motivation on depression and further indicate that the interaction of intrinsic motivation and positive affectivity alleviates depression.

Research limitations/implications

In future studies obtaining data from multiple sources would reduce the potential threat of common method bias associated with self‐report data. Since the cross‐sectional design of the present study constrains the ability to make causal inferences, future empirical studies with longitudinal data would be beneficial to establish causal relationships.

Practical implications

It would be helpful for employees to cope with emotional exhaustion and depression, if they could work in an environment, where there are supportive supervisors and wellness‐health programs. Mentors could provide such employees with vocational psychosocial support and become role models in the workplace. Workshops could encourage employees to openly discuss their problems in the workplace and would demonstrate that the organization cares about their well‐being.

Originality/value

Very little is known about factors that may potentially exacerbate or alleviate work‐related depression. Therefore, this study partially fills in this void in the hospitality management literature by testing the previously mentioned relationships.

Keywords

Citation

Karatepe, O.M. and Zargar Tizabi, L. (2011), "Work‐related depression in the hotel industry: a study in the United Arab Emirates", International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, Vol. 23 No. 5, pp. 608-623. https://doi.org/10.1108/09596111111143368

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited