The relationship of hardiness, stress and job satisfaction in law enforcement officers



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The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship of the degree of hardiness and level of stress to job satisfaction in law enforcement officers. It was hypothesized that the the inverse relationship of stress to job satisfaction would be moderated by higher levels of hardiness. The specific questions of the study were as follows: Does job satisfaction (as measured by the Index of Organizational Reaction, Smith, 1979) in police officers increase as the level of stress (as measured by the Police Stress Survey, Speilberger et al, 1981) decreases? Does job satisfaction increase as the level of hardiness (as measured by the Personal Views Survey, Kobasa & Maddi, 1982) increases? Does hardiness have a moderating effect on levels of stress? Does hardiness interact with stress to predict job satisfaction? One of the major constructs of hardiness as reviewed in this research and also a major question relevant to this study is the idea that hardiness plays a "buffering" or moderating role with regard to stress. Kobasa's (1979) main contention is that persons who experience high degrees of stress without falling ill have a personality structure differentiating them from persons who become sick under stress. She and her associates have found hardiness to be an important stress resistance factor in populations in various occupational groups. Law enforcement is an extremely stressful high risk occupation. Police officers are placed in volatile situations where they are sometimes asked to put their lives on the line and make critical decisions under a great deal of pressure. If indeed, hardiness can play a stress-buffering role for individuals them it would prove very valuable in helping law enforcement organizations identify those officers who have personalities better equipped to deal with the enormous amount of stress in police work. [...]



Police, Job stress