WORKPLACE FATIGUE IS A SYSTEMS PROBLEM

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Abstract

Workplace fatigue is traditionally treated almost exclusively as an individual issue, and it certainly is the case that individual differences lead some individuals to experience fatigue and, ultimately, to burn out more than others. Yet not enough attention has been paid to factors arising from work design and organizational strategy. This article addresses that deficit by taking a systems view of fatigue, including diagnostics around job design and organization design. The conclusion is that much greater attention needs to be paid to organizational factors beyond the individual’s control that promote fatigue. Because organizational factors cause at least part of the problem, solutions must incorporate organizational strategy and work design.

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