Organizations, labor control processes, and emotional labor :the case of the retail grocery trade
Barron, Mary L.
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The literature regarding organizations, labor control, and emotional labor suggests that the labor process within the service sector is fundamentally different from that of the manufacturing sector because the incorporation of a customer into the labor process necessitates an additional type of labor -- namely, emotional labor -- to facilitate the interaction. This study demonstrates that emotiona1labor is both heterogenous and dynamic. It is influenced not only by the specific service occupation under investigation, but also by the organizational context in which it is simultaneously manufactured and constrained. Emotional labor enactment varies between organizational contexts, among cashiers employed at the same store, and within the individual. Cashiers are able to shift between six distinct emotional labor enactment styles to accomplish their work: the conversationalist, the minimalist, the pretender, the avoider, the confronter, and the contender. This study also demonstrates that as the size of grocery establishments increase, labor control systems are altered to accommodate the growth which, in turn, influences emotional labor . Increasing formalization of emotional labor directives not only promotes uniformity but can also generate variation in the form of cashier resistance. Emotional labor commitment can be enhanced if the labor control system fosters internalization of organizational expectations among the cashiers. Importantly, potential negative effects of emotional labor can be lessened if strategies for handling the competing and oftentimes contradictory demands are effectively disseminated.
- Masters Theses