The Water Cooler

A blog of fresh ideas and findings from organizational leaders and researchers on how they’re making work better, shared regularly.

Job crafting and creating meaning in your work

Job crafting and creating meaning in your work
Rarely are jobs designed to match the talents, preferences, and aspirations of the individual. Dr. Amy Wrzesniewski, professor of Organizational Behavior at the Yale School of Management, discusses the art and science of job crafting.

Wrzesniewski studied hospital maintenance workers to look at how job crafting affected their work experience and morale. She set up two groups - one simply followed the job description while the second was asked to take on additional, related tasks of their own choosing. Differences between the two groups were significant - the second group found meaning in their work and saw themselves and their purpose as radically different from their counterparts. Allowing an employee to influence work scope changes the meaning of that work, and allows them to take ownership of their job. Wrzesniewski’s work shows that job crafting can foster engagement, job satisfaction, and resilience.