Social Workers in Israel: Daily Stressors, Work Benefits, Burnout and Well-Being

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

In this article, we report findings pertaining to connections between social workers' exposure to daily stressors, the work benefits they receive, their levels of burnout and their well-being. We examined (i) the associations between social workers' perceived exposure to daily stressors and their well-being; (ii) the mediating effect of burnout on these associations; and (iii) the moderating effect of extrinsic and intrinsic work benefits on the relationships between perceived exposure to daily stressors and burnout. Participants were 486 social workers, working in various organisations and with diverse populations in Israel. Of the various findings, two are of particular interest. One is that workers' depersonalisation of their clients mediated the relationship between the workers' exposure to daily stressors and their psychological distress. The other is that neither intrinsic nor extrinsic work benefits weakened the association between workers' exposure to daily stressors and their burnout, in terms of personal accomplishment. On the contrary, high benefits of either kind strengthened this association. These unexpected findings are discussed within the frameworks of relationships between service users and service providers and of Wilensky's compensatory theory. While this study was based in Israel, its conclusions bear relevance to social workers in other countries as well.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)318-339
Number of pages22
JournalBritish Journal of Social Work
Volume51
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2021

Keywords

  • Burnout
  • daily stressors
  • social workers
  • well-being
  • work benefits

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