An investigation into the predictors of burnout among accounting professionals: A multiple regression analysis

by Weiss, Stephen M., Ph.D., CAPELLA UNIVERSITY, 2016, 189 pages; 10017595


The business world is changing fast, experiencing more far-reaching, global opportunities than ever before due to technology and the need for real-time information. A significant result of this growth is the emergent need for accounting professionals to enhance their skills in the workplace. Accounting professionals are now facilitators of strategy and transformation, where change implementation has become the expected role. This requires new sets of skills, additional training, and heavier workloads than ever before. However, under this work environment, the balance between job demands and available resources increases exposure to stress potentially leading to burnout. The research problem addressed in the study concentrated on the prevalence of burnout in U.S. accounting professionals and the exploration of areas in the work environment (i.e., areas of worklife) that may influence burnout. The majority of studies on burnout in the work environment has centered primarily on human service professions (e.g., medical field, nursing, education) and is largely unexplored among accounting professionals. The survey instruments used in the research study were the Maslach Burnout Inventory–General Survey and the Areas of Worklife Survey administered to SurveyMonkey Audience participants via an online survey. Of the 433 potential participants, 302 responded to the e-mail invitation and ultimately, 200 completed surveys were obtained for data analysis. The results of the research study verified that accounting professionals in the sample, at least to some degree, demonstrated an inconsistent burnout pattern by exhibiting low levels of exhaustion, high levels of professional efficacy, with high levels of cynicism. From a statistical standpoint, the findings were rather consistent with previous research and only the observed levels of cynicism varied from normative results. Regardless, these findings underline the significance between the work environment and burnout, especially within the cynicism–reward relationship. In the end, the research study served to generate a more critical understanding of burnout among accounting professionals.

AdviserCheryl McConnaughey
Source TypeDissertation
SubjectsAccounting; Behavioral psychology; Management
Publication Number10017595

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