Boredom at Work: A Neglected Concept

Cynthia D Fisher

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

421 Citations (Scopus)
1869 Downloads (Pure)


Most people experience episodes of boredom at work from time to time, regardless of the nature of their job. Previous research conducted on industrial monotony has been unable to explain boredom on any but the simplest of tasks. It is suggested that there are border causes of boredom, including attributes of the task, environment, person, and person-environment fit. Consideration is also given to individual choices of response to feelings of boredom. Some of the propositions suggested include: 1. The relationship between capacity and boredom is moderated by task complexity. 2. Personality characteristics of extroversion, boredom susceptibility, and boredom proneness are positively related to state boredom in simple jobs. 3. The more a task is viewed as relating to achieving current concerns, the less bored performers will be. 4. Boredom can be reduced through goal-setting.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)395-417
Number of pages23
JournalHuman Relations
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 1993


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