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Exercise, character strengths, well-being, and learning climate in the prediction of performance over a 6-month period at a call center

S Moradi, A Nima, M Ricciardi, T Archer, D Garcia Frontiers in psychology 2014

Background: Performance monitoring might have an adverse influence on call center agents’ well-being. We investigate how performance, over a 6-month period, is related to agents’ perceptions of their learning climate, character strengths, well-being (subjective and psychological), and physical activity. Method: Agents (N = 135) self-reported perception of the learning climate (Learning Climate Questionnaire), character strengths (Values In Action Inventory Short Version), well-being (Positive Affect, Negative Affect Schedule, Satisfaction With Life Scale, Psychological Well-Being Scales Short Version), and how often/intensively they engaged in physical activity. Performance, “time on the phone,” was monitored for 6 consecutive months by the same system handling the calls. Results: Performance was positively related to having opportunities to develop, the character strengths clusters of Wisdom and Knowledge (e.g., curiosity for learning, perspective) and Temperance (e.g., having self-control, being prudent, humble, and modest), and exercise frequency. Performance was negatively related to the sense of autonomy and responsibility, contentedness, the character strengths clusters of Humanity and Love (e.g., helping others, cooperation) and Justice (e.g., affiliation, fairness, leadership), positive affect, life satisfaction and exercise Intensity. Conclusion: Call centers may need to create opportunities to develop to increase agents’ performance and focus on individual differences in the recruitment and selection of agents to prevent future shortcomings or worker dissatisfaction. Nevertheless, performance measurement in call centers may need to include other aspects that are more attuned with different character strengths. After all, allowing individuals to put their strengths at work should empower the individual and at the end the organization itself. Finally, physical activity enhancement programs might offer considerable positive work outcomes.

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