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Work–Life Balance Culture, Work–Home Interaction, and Emotional Exhaustion: A Structural Equation Modeling Approach

Nitzsche, Anika Dipl Soz; Pfaff, Holger PhD; Jung, Julia PhD; Driller, Elke PhD

Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine: January 2013 - Volume 55 - Issue 1 - p 67–73
doi: 10.1097/JOM.0b013e31826eefb1
Original Articles

Objective: To examine the relationships among employees' emotional exhaustion, positive and negative work–home interaction, and perceived work–life balance culture in companies.

Methods: Data for this study were collected through online surveys of employees from companies in the micro- and nanotechnology sectors (N = 509). A structural equation modeling analysis was performed.

Results: A company culture perceived by employees as supportive of their work–life balance was found to have both a direct negative effect on emotional exhaustion and an indirect negative effect meditated by negative work–home interaction. In addition, whereas negative work–home interaction associated positively with emotional exhaustion, positive work–home interaction had no significant effect.

Conclusions: The direct and indirect relationship between work–life balance culture and emotional exhaustion has practical implications for health promotion in companies.

From the Institute for Medical Sociology, Health Services Research and Rehabilitation Science, Faculty of Human Science and Faculty of Medicine, University of Cologne, Cologne, Germany.

Address correspondence to Anika Nitzsche, Institute for Medical Sociology, Health Services Research and Rehabilitation Science, University of Cologne, Eupener Straße 129, 50933 Cologne, Germany (

This study was financially supported by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research, the European Union, the European Social Fund (grant 01FH09045), and Köln Fortune (grant from the University Hospital of Cologne: 77/2010).

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

Copyright © 2013 by the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine