A Short and Valid Measure of Work-Family Enrichment

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Journal of Occupational Health Psychology






American Psychological Association

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The stream of research concerning work-family enrichment has generated a significant body of research because it plays an important role in occupational health (Masuda, McNall, Allen, & Nicklin, 2012). Work-family enrichment has been defined as “the extent to which experiences in one role improve the quality of life in the other role” (Greenhaus & Powell, 2006, p. 73). Within work-family enrichment, there are two directions: work to family and family to work. Carlson, Kacmar, Wayne, and Grzywacz (2006) developed an 18-item scale to measure this construct. Although the scale has been shown to be both reliable and valid, it also requires work-family researchers to include a proportionally large number of items to capture this construct in a study. The goal of the current study was to isolate a subset of the items in this measure that produces results similar to the full version thereby providing a more streamlined scale for researchers. Using a five-sample study that follows the scale reduction procedures offered by Stanton, Sinar, Balzer, and Smith (2002), we provide evidence that scales containing only three items for each direction of enrichment produce results equivalent to the full scale with respect to reliability and discriminant, convergent, and predictive validity. Reducing the original scale by two thirds, without losing explanatory power, allows scholars to measure enrichment in the work and family domains more efficiently, which should help minimize survey time, lower refusal rates, and generate less missing data.

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