Psychosocial safety climate buffers effects of job demands on depression and positive organizational behaviors
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In a general population sample of 2343 Australian workers from a wide ranging employment demographic, we extended research testing the buffering role of psychosocial safety climate (PSC) as a macro-level resource within the health impairment process of the Job Demands-Resources (JD-R) model. Moderated structural equation modeling was used to test PSC as a moderator between emotional and psychological job demands and worker depression compared with control and social support as alternative moderators. We also tested PSC as a moderator between depression and positive organizational behaviors (POB; engagement and job satisfaction) compared with control and social support as moderators. As expected we found PSC moderated the effects of job demands on depression and further moderated the effects of depression on POB with fit to the data that was as good as control and social support as moderators. This study has shown that PSC is a macro-level resource and safety signal for workers acting to reduce demand-induced depression. We conclude that organizations need to focus on the development of a robust PSC that will operate to buffer the effects of workplace psychosocial hazards and to build environments conducive to worker psychological health and positive organizational behaviors.
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