We proposed the synergistic effect of a successful recovery experience on a future recovery experience to extend the conservation of resources theory (COR) by discussing how the outcome of a successfully experienced recovery (e.g., increased positive affect after massage) benefits two separate specific recovery experiences, relaxation (e.g., sleep quality) and psychological detachment from work, to reduce burnout. The theoretical background was rooted in a combined theoretical notion of the COR and the effort recovery model (E-R model). The proposed hypothesis was examined in 216 randomly selected blue-collar workers who were required to expend high levels of physical effort at work. The analytical results of this study contribute to the current literature in three ways. First, we theoretically and empirically extend the COR by proposing that resources could benefit one another. In other words, the future resource gains are built upon the initial resource gains. Second, we propose the synergistic effect of a successful recovery experience on a future recovery experience in reducing burnout by showing that the outcome of a successfully experienced recovery benefits the efficacy of other recovery experiences, which enable people to replenish psychological and physiological resources more effectively and consequently reduce burnout. Finally, we pragmatically suggest the importance of providing recovery mechanisms (e.g., activity, facilitation, and service) in the work environment to ensure that employees can easily experience successful recovery from the provided recovery mechanisms. We also provide suggestions for future research.
the 17th Congress of the European Association of Work and Organizational Psychology