Out Of Sight, Out Of Mind? A Literature Review Of Occupational Safety And Health Leadership And Management Of Distributed Workers

Out Of Sight, Out Of Mind? A Literature Review Of Occupational Safety And Health Leadership And Management Of Distributed Workers

Distributed workers those who work autonomously and remotely from their organisation's main locations for at least some of their work-time are an important and growing proportion of the workforce that share common characteristics of temporal and spatial distance. Yet, many leadership styles and management practices assume face-to-face interaction, potentially rendering them less helpful in trying to ensure good occupational safety and health (OSH) outcomes for distributed workers. We conducted a systematic literature review to examine the leadership and management of OSH for distributed workers. Twenty-three papers were identified. Eleven papers identified established leadership styles, including leader-member exchange, (safety specific) transformational and considerate leadership. Twenty papers examined management. Findings from these 20 papers were interpreted as representing resources, deployed through management and utilised by managers to ensure OSH for distributed workers, including communication technologies, social support and a good safety climate. Despite limited research in this area, findings indicate the importance of both leadership and management in ensuring OSH for distributed workers. Findings suggest a fertile area for future enquiry.

Out Of Sight, Out Of Mind? A Literature Review Of Occupational Safety And Health Leadership And Management Of Distributed Workers

Date Published
Sun, 01 Jul 2018
Publisher
Work & Stress
Reference
Nayani, R., Nielsen, K., Daniels, K., Donaldson-Feilder, E., & Lewis, R. (2018). Out of sight, out of mind? A literature review of occupational safety and health leadership and management of distributed workers. Work & Stress, 32(2), 124-146. https://doi.
Website
https://doi.org/10.1080/02678373.2017.1390797
Categories
Keywords
Remote Working, Flexible Working, Manager, Leadership, Management Behaviours

Distributed workers those who work autonomously and remotely from their organisation's main locations for at least some of their work-time are an important and growing proportion of the workforce that share common characteristics of temporal and spatial distance. Yet, many leadership styles and management practices assume face-to-face interaction, potentially rendering them less helpful in trying to ensure good occupational safety and health (OSH) outcomes for distributed workers. We conducted a systematic literature review to examine the leadership and management of OSH for distributed workers. Twenty-three papers were identified. Eleven papers identified established leadership styles, including leader-member exchange, (safety specific) transformational and considerate leadership. Twenty papers examined management. Findings from these 20 papers were interpreted as representing resources, deployed through management and utilised by managers to ensure OSH for distributed workers, including communication technologies, social support and a good safety climate. Despite limited research in this area, findings indicate the importance of both leadership and management in ensuring OSH for distributed workers. Findings suggest a fertile area for future enquiry.

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