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date: 12 July 2020

Abstract and Keywords

For many jobs, interacting with others is a major part of the job requirement. Because interactions can become emotional, many organizations prescribe what emotions their employees must and must not display to facilitate the achievement of organizational goals. Hence, employees must regulate their emotions in accordance with these expectations. Findings suggest that emotional labor has important individual and organizational outcomes. However, only recently have scholars turned their focus on the motivational mechanism that leads employees to regulate their emotions. Building on previous work, this chapter presents a motivational model of emotional labor based on self-determination theory to better understand “how” employees regulate their emotions at work and, more particularly, “why” they adopt certain strategies. The chapter presents the emotional labor notion, proposes a motivational model of the emotional labor process, and proposes avenues to guide future research.

Keywords: emotions, emotional labor, emotion regulation, motivation, self-determination theory, task motivation, psychological well-being, job attitudes

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