Conceptualising the psychological work states – extending the JD-R model

Gaurav Manohar Marathe (Indian Institute of Management Ranchi, Ranchi, India)
Girish Balasubramanian (Xavier School of Human Resource Management, Xavier University Bhubaneswar, Bhubaneswar, India)
Gloryson Chalil (School of Business and Human Resources, XLRI – Xavier School of Management, Jamshedpur, India)

Management Research Review

ISSN: 2040-8269

Publication date: 24 June 2019



The purpose of this paper is to extend the job demands-resources (JD-R) model by including the factor of “personal demands” and conceptualise experience on personal and job dimensions separately as personal thrust and job thrust. Further, different psychological work states that individuals experience through intra-dimensional balance across personal and job dimensions are proposed.


The paper explains various possible psychological work states experienced by a job incumbent by conceptually developing intra-dimensional fluctuations within the person and job dimensions, respectively, as the new concepts of person and job thrust.


Personal thrust and job thrust have been identified as the two dimensions which impact the work state. Complete engagement and complete disengagement have been identified as two ends of a continuum. Complete work engagement is defined as the balance across these two dimensions. Various combinations of balances and imbalances across these two dimensions results in four different states of disengagement identified as work exhaustion, work boredom, work search and work neutrality.

Research limitations/implications

This paper suggests a novel approach to using personal demand to look at work states which would significantly impact existing research in the JD-R model. This paper tries to bridge the gap between work engagement as a construct and the psychological work states as a phenomenon. Further, it is contended that the psychological work states are manifestations of the interactions between the two dimensions identified as personal and job thrust, which could further be developed into various work-related attitudes and behaviours.

Practical implications

Instead of only relying on the engagement/disengagement dichotomy to plan interventions, managers can plan the appropriate interventions depending on the specific disengagement state analysed through personal and job thrust.


The newly developed model of work states explains the fluctuation of an individual across different work states and links the personal and job-related demand–resource balance at the workplace with distal work-related outcomes, thereby significantly extending the JD-R model.



Marathe, G., Balasubramanian, G. and Chalil, G. (2019), "Conceptualising the psychological work states – extending the JD-R model", Management Research Review, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print.

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