Personality and work life: A comparison between hearing-impaired persons and a normal-hearing population

Gunnel A. M. Backenroth-Ohsako1, Peter Wennberg1, Britt Af Klinteberg2
1Karolinska Institutet, Sweden
2Stockholm University, Sweden
Cite this article:  Backenroth-Ohsako, G., Wennberg, P., & Af Klinteberg, B. (2003). Personality and work life: A comparison between hearing-impaired persons and a normal-hearing population. Social Behavior and Personality: An international journal, 31, 191-204.

Volume 31 Issue 2 | e1234 | Published: March 2003 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2224/sbp.2003.31.2.191

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Hearing loss is commonly found amongst the normal population and constitutes a hidden problem in working life. The aim of this study was to compare differences between hearing-impaired persons and a control sample of hearing subjects with regard to their work-life conditions and personality traits. The investigation group consisted of 41 hearing-impaired individuals with a mean age of 49 years. The control sample consisted of 182 subjects with a mean age of 36 years. Overall it was found that subjects in the control sample were more satisfied with their current work situation. However the investigation group reported that they performed well at work and, in comparison to the control sample, they reported a higher level of performance. Furthermore, the personality profiles differed between the two groups. The hearing-impaired sample – illustrated by case studies - showed significantly higher levels of muscular tension and psychastenia after controlling for gender and age. The results suggest the need for increased awareness of how work conditions may be experienced when a hearing impairment is present, as well as for future practical intervention programs to assist hearing-impaired employees to cope with an increasingly demanding work life.
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