Play hard, work harder? How hobbies affect employees’ work and life
Harari Hamam, Dana Harari
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Decades of work-family research establishes that family life substantially influences experiences at work. While we have vast knowledge regarding the influence of family on work and vice versa, relatively little research examines the influence of other activities that employees engage in outside of work, considered a “third place” domain (Ashforth, Kreiner, & Fugate, 2000) and their impact on work. In this dissertation, I focus on hobbies as an exemplar for a “third place” domain, which affects employees’ experiences across domains. In researching hobbies, I employ theoretical perspective from theories of multiple domains. From one hand, hobbies align with role accumulation theory (Sieber, 1974) and can be a source of enrichment leading to greater energy and beneficial outcomes for other domains. On the other hand, in alignment with role strain theory (Goode, 1960), daily hobby involvement can be a source of depletion, leading to detrimental daily outcomes across domains. I examine these perspectives in the same theoretical framework, and by so doing add to multiple domains research in integrating contradictory theories regarding the effects of multiple domains on one another. Across two studies I highlight the importance of hobbies for employees and examine the effects of hobby involvement as a between- and within-person phenomenon. In doing so, I facilitate future research regarding the effects of hobbies and other “third place” domains on employees’ work, family, and on other domains in their lives more generally.