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Maintaining a focus on opportunities at work: The interplay between age, job complexity, and the use of selection, optimization, and compensation strategies

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Abstract

The concept of focus on opportunities describes how many new goals, options, and possibilities employees believe to have in their personal future at work. This study investigated the specific and shared effects of age, job complexity, and the use of successful aging strategies called selection, optimization, and compensation (SOC) in predicting focus on opportunities. Results of data collected from 133 employees of one company (mean age = 38 years, SD = 13, range 16–65 years) showed that age was negatively, and job complexity and use of SOC strategies were positively related to focus on opportunities. In addition, older employees in high-complexity jobs and older employees in low-complexity jobs with high use of SOC strategies were better able to maintain a focus on opportunities than older employees in low-complexity jobs with low use of SOC strategies. Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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