Do we act as old as we feel? An examination of subjective age and job crafting behaviour of late career employees
Ageing research calls for a focus on the mechanisms that can explain effects of ageing beyond the purely chronologic marker of age. To address this issue, the present study focuses on subjective age as a holistic construct that is related to various developmental and motivational processes and allows deeper insights into the interindividual variability of the ageing experience in older workers. Specifically, the current study examines on a sample of N = 485 late career employees (mean age 54 years),if subjective age is related to job crafting behaviours of older workers and whether job crafting is related to higher levels of work meaningfulness in late career. Results indicate that subjective age is significantly negatively related to job crafting behaviour over and above the effect of chronological age, self-rated health and workplace autonomy. Job crafting, in turn, significantly predicted work meaningfulness, above the effect of workplace autonomy. In sum, our study provides evidence for the utility of psychological representations of ageing to understand job crafting at work for an increasingly important segment of the working population.