Workplace Harassment of Adolescents

Released: 13-Dec-2012 11:05 AM EST
Source Newsroom: Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology (SIOP)
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Citations 2012 SIOP Conference presentation

Newswise — Adolescent employees in low-opportunity jobs are more likely to be harassed by older coworkers according to an Illinois State University study which surveyed 116 high school teens and found that more than 54 percent of females and 37 percent of males said they were harassed on the job. Most worked in restaurants or retail stores and reported that their harassment experiences led to lower job satisfaction and, particularly with females, lower skill development. These negative experiences could impact their performance in school, absenteeism, tardiness and grades as well as their outlook on future work experiences, the researchers said. However, those teens who had jobs that provided skill development opportunities, including meaningful work, feedback and some autonomy had greater job satisfaction and engagement levels. The study suggests that organizations hiring adolescents look further into coping strategies, job context and harassment experiences.

For more information contact Kimberly Schneider, Associate Professor of Psychology, Illinois State University.


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