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Life interrupted, but performance improved: Rethinking the influence of technology-mediated interruptions at work and personal life

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journal contribution
posted on 06.01.2022, 15:27 by Antonio Carlos Gastaud Maçada, JOSÉ CARLOS DA SILVA FREITAS JUNIOR, Rafael Alfonso Brinkhues, Sílvio Luís de Vasconcellos

Purpose: This paper aims to analyze the effects of the technology-mediated interruptions on the conflicts and the performance of individuals during their work and non-work time.

Theoretical framework: This work is based on the Conservation of Resources Theory, focusing on conflict and quality of life in the digital age.

Design/methodology/approach: To evaluate the influence of technology interruptions on conflicts and performance, we applied a survey to management and accounting professionals and obtained 399 valid questionnaires. We analyzed the data through Partial Least Squares structural equation modeling (PLS-SEM).

Findings: The data analysis demonstrates that interruptions – as expected – contribute to increasing conflicts both at work and at non-work. However, contrary to previous research, interruptions can also increase performance in both instances.

Research, Practical & Social implications: The proposed approach has a practical value for teachers and students of human-computer interaction and IT practitioners in any other professional environment where the technology represents a channel between personal and professional life.

Originality/value: This research measured and analyzed the effects of technology-mediated interruptions on conflict and individual performance in Brazil. The results showed that technology-mediated interruptions are related to the quality of life and leisure time, showing that conflicts due to technology are not a buzzword. Also, research findings present a new research path as interruptions that positively influence the individual’s performance are not fully understood.

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