What is it about?

The relationship between stress and employee creativity is still uncertain. Some suggest that stress can be beneficial, but to date, there is limited evidence. In this study, we argue that it is in the presence of a core psychological resource reservoir that employees will be able to be more creative - even in the context of more stress. We provide empirical evidence for this and show that some individuals (those with greater psychological resources) can manage stress better than others towards creativity. However, even for these individuals, those with the highest creativity were those with low not high stress, although those with high stress were more creative than all others with low psychological resources.

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Why is it important?

Stress is a natural and largely detrimental factor of work. Creativity is a key component for organizations, and thus understanding under what conditions and types of stress employees can still be creative is important to understand.


My co-author (Dr Azka Ghafoor) did her PhD (supervised by me) on employee creativity. This paper makes an important contribution to the literature because it shows that some employe can be creative while experiencing stress is often hypothesized but seldom tested.

Jarrod Haar
Auckland University of Technology

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This page is a summary of: Under what conditions can stressors and strain positively influence creativity? A repeat-measure study of psychological resources., International Journal of Stress Management, June 2022, American Psychological Association (APA),
DOI: 10.1037/str0000258.
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