ROTTERDAM, Netherlands, July 23 (UPI) -- It pays for employers to provide social support, feedback and employee opportunities for autonomy, variety and growth, Dutch researchers say.
Arnold B. Bakker, a psychologist at Erasmus University Rotterdam in the Netherlands, say when employees satisfy basic human needs for social support, feedback and employee opportunities for growth, work gets done more quickly and with better results.
The process is cyclical, because working better is more rewarding for the worker, which in turn increases the employee's engagement and effectiveness, Bakker says.
Interestingly, engagement -- or high-quality performance -- is greatest when the demands of the job are highest, Bakker adds.
No worker should expect to feel, or be expected to exhibit, peak engagement every second of the workday -- work can also sometimes be tedious and employees need to be able to tolerate that. However, workers should not be held to impossible standards.
"Down time," says Bakker, "is not only a mark of sympathetic management. It helps renew workers, keeping them happy, productive and engaged," which in turn results in a virtuous cycle of work engagement, job satisfaction and higher productivity.
The findings are scheduled to be published in the August issue of Current Directions in Psychological Science.