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When a calling is living: Job crafting mediates the relationships between living a calling and work engagement

Hongxia Li (China-ASEAN International College, Dhurakij Pundit University, Bangkok, Thailand and School of Management, Chongqing Technology and Business University, Chongqing, China)
Xiugang Yang (China-ASEAN International College, Dhurakij Pundit University, Bangkok, Thailand)

Journal of Chinese Human Resource Management

ISSN: 2040-8005

Article publication date: 18 July 2018

Issue publication date: 18 October 2018

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Abstract

Purpose

The argument that work engagement enhances job performance has gained wide acceptance among practitioners and human resources management literature. There is consensus in management literature that job crafting can affect work engagement. The concept of callings from theology has been resurrected in job behavior and continues to garner growing attention from practitioners in recent years. However, few studies examine how and why living a calling influence job crafting and work engagement. The purpose of this paper is to examine the relationships between living a calling, job crafting and work engagement for knowledgeable employees through questionnaires.

Design/methodology/approach

The part-time MBA students were asked to reflect on present jobs. In total, 390 effective questionnaires were collected from part-time MBA students of four universities in Chongqing, China for finance, administration, manufacturing, service, technology, medication, education and others. Results were analyzed using SPSS and Amos. The measurement scale is given in Appendix.

Findings

First, the author explicitly proposes and validates the direct relationship between living a calling and job crafting. Second, this study confirms that crafting challenging job demands are significant to vigor subdimension and dedication subdimension of work engagement, whereas crafting challenging job demands not significant to absorption subdimension of work engagement. Third, this study indicates that crafting hindering job demands are nonsignificant to vigor, dedication and absorption about three subdimensions of work engagement. Fourth, this study showed living a calling can enhance work engagement for employees. Fifth, this study finds three groups (eight items) of mediation effect between living a calling, job crafting and work engagement.

Practical implications

These insights may help managers to focus on living a calling and encourage beneficial job crafting behaviors in China. The sample is original and has the potential to contribute to debate on work life balance and particularly the meaning of work/careers in China.

Social implications

This study is an interesting revisit to the old workplace sociology and organizational psychology which has become somewhat neglected these days.

Originality/value

This study has provided insight in the relationships between living a calling, job crafting and work engagement.

Keywords

Citation

Li, H. and Yang, X. (2018), "When a calling is living: Job crafting mediates the relationships between living a calling and work engagement", Journal of Chinese Human Resource Management, Vol. 9 No. 2, pp. 77-106. https://doi.org/10.1108/JCHRM-12-2017-0030

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

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