Essay Example on Emotional Labor in the Workplace: Effects and Attitudes

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  5
Wordcount:  1144 Words
Date:  2023-01-04


In most organizations, emotional labors are relevant because employees expect managers to be cautious with them and not be hostile. In this research paper, details are given on what emotional labor is in the workplace and how employees are influenced by it. There is also a section of interviews on the subject and on employee attitudes concerning emotional labor. Further, there is an explanation of the effects of it like workplace stress, anxiety, alienation, and fatigue. The primary purpose of this research is to conduct an analysis and give out the finding of emotional labor in the work place.

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Emotional Labor

Emotional labor is described as a process of maintaining, expression of a feeling to fulfill emotion requirement in the workplace. In most cases, the employees are required to maintain their feelings during the interaction with leaders, co-workers, and customers. However, the challenge to the workers comes when an employee has to deal and project their emotion while dealing with another one which takes a lot of heavy toll on an individual. This challenge is described as the emotional dissonance (Brotheridge & Grandey, 2002). An individual can try hard to deal with other people's emotions while dealing with their own emotions. Emotional labor can be categorized as follows

Category Example
Nasty emotions Jealousy, envy, and anger
Empathetic emotion Compassion and gratitude
Existential emotion Shame, anxiety and guilt
Emotional unfavorable life condition Hope, relief, depression, and sadness
Emotional by favorable life condition Love, pride, and happiness

According to Grandey and Melloy (2017), the management of the emotions by employees tends to create a situation in which emotion labor can be exchanged in the market place. Furthermore, emotion labor needs workers to keep emotion and express it to another person; also emotion labor requires a voice to voice contact or face to face contact with the public. Emotions and feelings are connected together because of the interaction between employees they experience in the work place. In most cases, feelings offer a way to look at work positively and help employees to feel the right attitude toward the job. An example is a person who collects bills is trained to manage job (Gabriel, Daniels, Diefendorff, & Greguras, 2015).

Additionally, emotional labor is global. It is described when one leaves their elderly, young and communities in the southern countries and that same individual takes a well-paid job taking care of the elderly and communities in another country. In such jobs, it causes depression, anguish, and grief to their children, spouse and parents. Another way that emotion is described is to cross the border, which is done through the email and telephones mostly in India and Bangalore. According to Rupp and Brice (2015), emotional labor helps in illuminating the hidden injuries like capitalism, racism, and sexism.


Interviews with various subjects were conducted with public school teachers, taxi drivers and bank tellers. From each work setting, two people were interviewed and cooperated to answer each question that was asked. Teachers in public schools experience emotional labor. Some days they can experience positive emotions like; hope, joy and also pride, and some days they can experience negative emotions like anger, annoyance, and frustration. Emotion labor can be caused by conjunction between a teacher and a student during learning of new concept.

The emotions are based on norms. Teachers' experience is that, during the test he/she gives his/her student a speed test of the topic they had completed in mathematics. After marking, the student had performed very poorly which made him frustrated and angry because the student never said that he/she had not understood the topic. However, he maintained his emotions and repeated the topic so that he/she they can perform better in their final examination. In the assessment, teachers experience emotional labor mostly during the negative teacher-student interaction, which is in the absence of training and explicit display rules.

The bank tellers and taxi driver assessment indicated that each day they endure emotional labor in their work and it can either be negative or positive, because they meet with the different customer each day and they might have a different attitude. It is view on a brighter side because it is part of the organization life. Furthermore, it helps people understand their reaction in every situation they face and create procedures and policies to lessen the negative impact of emotional labor. Some people define motional labor as unpaid labor. Emotional labor has expected requirement that is needed for many roles with ability and skills to give their level best in the professional position.

In some employees, interviews can be more costly than others because of the job satisfaction. Most of the interviews may not be right and are associated with the negative mood. Negative mood may result to decrease of job satisfaction and increases emotional exhaustion. Besides, emotional labor can be dealt in different ways like improving emotional intelligence. Emotional intelligence is the ability to recognize other people emotions, teaching the display rule, buffering, teaching problem-solving techniques and using programs that help workers

Summary and Conclusion

In conclusion, emotional labor can either be positive or negative, and employees can find a way to deal with the emotion and how to control it. Furthermore, it has different categories like emotions that are provoked by favorable life conditions, empathetic feelings, emotions that are provoked by unfavorable life conditions and nasty emotions. Emotion labor can be described in two ways which include; [1] deep acting: this is done by controlling one emotion and convincing oneself that they are happy no matter the situation. [2] Surface action: this is pretending to have feelings by using different means like artificial and unnatural verbal communication and body language.

Also, emotion labor helps people understand their reaction in every situation they face and create procedures and policies to lessen the negative influence of emotional labor. Besides, emotion labor is viewed in two perspectives which are; going global and cross the broader. There are different ways that help in dealing with emotional labor, they include; buffering, teaching the display rule, teaching problem-solving techniques and also use of Programme that assists workers.


Brotheridge, C. M.; Grandey, A. A. (2002). "Emotional labor and burnout: Comparing two perspectives of people work" (PDF). Journal of Vocational Behavior. 60: 17-39. Doi: 10.1006/jvbe.2001.1815

Guy, Mary E., Newman, Meredith, Mastracci, & Sharon (2008). Emotional Labor- Putting the Service in Public Service. New York: M.E. Sharpe. p. 63. ISBN 978-0-7656-2117-7.

Gabriel, A. S., Daniels, M. A., Diefendorff, J. M., & Greguras, G. J. (2015). Emotional labor: A latent profile analysis of emotional labor strategies. Journal of Applied Psychology, 100(3), 863.

Grandey, A. A., & Melloy, R. C. (2017). The state of the heart: Emotional labor as emotion regulation reviewed and revised. Journal of occupational health psychology, 22(3), 407.

Rupp, D., & Brice, W. N. (2015). Emotional labor threatens decent work: A proposal to eradicate emotional display rules. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 36(6), 770-785.

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