DECONSTRUCTING THE CURRENT CONSTRUCTION OF MOW: 'MEANING OF WORK' - WHAT DO WE REALLY MEAN? by ProQuest

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									            DECONSTRUCTING THE CURRENT CONSTRUCTION OF MOW:
               ‘MEANING OF WORK’ – WHAT DO WE REALLY MEAN?



                               BILL BUENAR PUPLAMPU*, Ph.D, C.Psychol
          Department of Organisation & Human Resource Management
                     University of Ghana Business School
                                P.O. Box LG78
                                 Legon GHANA


                      This paper sets out to examine some of the
                      literature on the „Meaning of Work‟ (MOW)
                      concept and demonstrate the apparent confusion
                      in the use of MOW. It argues that MOW is at
                      present not clearly defined. Based on a limited
                      review of the extant literatures the paper
                      suggests that conceptually and operationally,
                      MOW must be kept distinct from the several
                      constructs that have come to be used in close
                      association with it. Examples of such constructs
                      are „job involvement‟, „work values‟, „work
                      ethics‟.    It is argued that MOW could be
                      conceived of as an abstract, but forcibly present
                      belief or notion about work and its origin, which
                      provides human beings with a backdrop for
                      much of life‟s activities. It is also suggested that
                      MOW should not be seen as a motivational
                      concept, in that it may not be possible to predict
                      work effort or behaviour directly from the
                      articulated MOW of a person or group. The paper
                      attempts a definition of the Meaning of Work
                      and puts forward three propositions to guide
                      future work. To date, the research efforts in the
                      area of MOW have proceeded without a clear
                      definition or theoretical base for the concept.
                      This paper calls for debate on the ontological
                      (the nature) and teleological (the purpose) base
                      of the concept „work‟, its meaning in society and


*
    E-mail: bbpups@ug.edu.gh
              
								
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