The crossover of burnout and work engagement among working couples

Arnold B. Bakker, Evangelia Demerouti, Wilmar B. Schaufeli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

305 Citations (Scopus)


The present study tested the hypothesis that burnout and work engagement may crossover from husbands to wives and vice versa. Data were collected among 323 couples working in a variety of occupations. The Job Demands-Resources model was used to simultaneously examine possible correlates of burnout and engagement for each partner separately. The results of a series of hierarchical regression analyses provide evidence for the crossover of burnout (exhaustion and cynicism) and work engagement (vigor and dedication) among partners. The crossover relationships were significant and about equally strong for both partners, after controlling for some important characteristics of the work and home environment. These findings expand previous crossover research, particularly by showing that positive experiences at work may be transferred to the home domain. We argue that the crossover of positive feelings among partners should be placed more prominently on the research agenda.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)661-689
Number of pages29
JournalHuman Relations
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Burnout
  • Crossover
  • Job Demands-Resources model
  • Work engagement

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • General Social Sciences
  • Strategy and Management
  • Management of Technology and Innovation


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