To read the full version of this content please select one of the options below:

The meaning of furloughs on family identification

Ashley Mandeville (Department of Management, Florida Gulf Coast University, Fort Myers, Florida, USA)
Marilyn Whitman (Department of Management, University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, Alabama, USA)
Jonathon Halbesleben (Department of Management, University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, Alabama, USA)

Personnel Review

ISSN: 0048-3486

Article publication date: 23 August 2019

Issue publication date: 23 August 2019

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to extend the meaning maintenance model (MMM) by elucidating the meaning employees provide to both work and family during a furlough.

Design/methodology/approach

The sample consisted of 180 state government employees, who completed four surveys, starting at a time before a furlough was initiated through returning to work following a furlough. The authors used random coefficient modeling of a mixed-effects model for discontinuous change.

Findings

Findings suggest that a furlough is associated with increases in perceived psychological contract breach, an indication that the meaning of work is being threatened. Following the furlough, employees’ family identity salience significantly increased. Further, rumination about the furlough increased the shift in family identity salience.

Research limitations/implications

This research tests the MMM in the context of furloughs and work-family implications. The results suggest that employees experience fluid compensation, a key facet of the MMM, during a furlough. Further, rumination of the experienced furlough can strengthen the fluid compensation process.

Practical implications

The implications for organizations implementing furloughs and various methods for implementing furloughs are discussed.

Originality/value

This research extends the MMM by empirically examining it in the context of furloughs and work-family implications. Further, it extends the MMM by examining the impact of rumination on the fluid compensation process.

Keywords

Citation

Mandeville, A., Whitman, M. and Halbesleben, J. (2019), "The meaning of furloughs on family identification", Personnel Review, Vol. 48 No. 6, pp. 1596-1610. https://doi.org/10.1108/PR-07-2018-0245

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2019, Emerald Publishing Limited