An Exploration of Gender and Career Stage Differences on a Multidimensional Measure of Work Meaningfulness
In recent years, the constructs of work meaning and work meaningfulness have been differentiated, and multidimensional measures of the latter have been developed. In the present study, we administered one such measure—the Comprehensive Meaningful Work Scale (CMWS)—to a gender-balanced and age-diverse sample of managers and conducted a multivariate analysis of CMWS scores that explored the contributions of participants’ gender and their adult career stage. As hypothesized, the CMWS subscale scores were negatively correlated with participants’ scores on an independent measure of work stress. Results also revealed a significant multivariate effect associated with their career stage that was limited to one CMWS subscale (i.e., “balancing tensions”), with managers in their “prime work years” (i.e., 40–54) evidencing less favorable scores than those in either the “settling in” (i.e., 25–39) or “approaching retirement” (i.e., 55–65) stages. The implications of these findings for future research on work meaningfulness are discussed.
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