State boredom and workplace behaviours: Does feeling bored lead to increases in daily counterproductive work behaviour, organizational citizenship behaviour, and job crafting?
Previous research suggests that state boredom’s aversive and distracting properties prompt employees to engage in destructive and harmful workplace behaviours. This limited scope has ignored the possibility that boredom’s distracting properties could lead employees to engage in a range of workplace behaviours – some of which may benefit the organization. In the present research, I examined the extent to which feeling bored was positively related to subsequently performing counterproductive work behaviour (CWB), organizational citizenship behaviour (OCB), and job crafting. I also considered whether being conscientious or agreeable moderated the relation between state boredom and its potential outcomes as these traits may predispose employees to engage in certain behaviours when bored. Two-hundred-and-thirty-eight full-time workers participated in a 10-day daily diary study wherein state boredom was measured in the morning; CWB, OCB, and job crafting in the afternoon; and conscientiousness and agreeableness at baseline. The results indicated that state boredom was positively related to CWB directed at the organization, negatively related to job crafting, and unrelated to CWB directed at individuals or OCB. Moreover, only agreeableness moderated one of the effects such that less agreeable employees were more likely to engage in CWB directed at individuals compared to more agreeable employees. The implications of these findings are discussed.