Measuring work styles: Towards an understanding of the dynamic components of the theory of work adjustment

Piers H. Bayl-Smith*, Barbara Griffin

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    23 Citations (Scopus)


    Work styles are an important yet largely unexplored component of the theory of work adjustment (TWA), describing a dynamic component of how individuals maintain and adjust fit with their work environment. The active work style (AWS) scale is the first attempt to develop a specific self-report measure of work styles suitable for longitudinal research. Results from three studies support Dawis and Lofquist's (1984) proposed four factor structure, but these factors are related through a second-order factor describing a person's generalised level of work activity and effort across time. The AWS scale demonstrated good evidence for reliability and validity, and strong measurement invariance across time signifying its suitability for longitudinal research. In line with expectations, overall work style was positively related to conscientiousness and work engagement yet unrelated to stress. When controlling for these variables, AWS was positively related to demands-abilities fit, but not needs-supplies fit. Limitations and possibilities for future research are also discussed.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)132-144
    Number of pages13
    JournalJournal of Vocational Behavior
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2015


    • P-E fit
    • Reliability
    • Theory of work adjustment
    • Validity
    • Work styles


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