Original Research

Too much information: When work-family conflict empowers senior managers to stay

Eugene A. Ohu
SA Journal of Industrial Psychology | Vol 49 | a2033 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajip.v49i0.2033 | © 2023 Eugene A. Ohu | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 06 June 2022 | Published: 27 November 2023

About the author(s)

Eugene A. Ohu, Department of Organisational Behaviour and Human Resource Management, Lagos Business School, Lagos, Nigeria


Orientation: Employees’ intention to leave the organisation they work for can have various debilitating effects on the organisation. Thus, it is imperative to examine factors that can lead to turnover intentions. This empirical study considered the impact of information processing cognitive load on engagement and hence on turnover intention.

Research purpose: This study investigated the correlates of turnover intention, to determine whether, why and how the quantity of information processed by managers in the course of their work predicts their intention to quit.

Motivation for the study: Because of globalisation, its effect and the proliferation and adoption of information and communication technology, new ways are sought to explain employee engagement. This study aimed to better understand what both motivates and encourages employee commitment and increases retention.

Research approach/design and method: The study employed a cross-sectional survey of some senior managers in a West African country. A total of 49 participants completed an online questionnaire (Turnover intention, Work Design Questionnaire, Work-family conflict [WFC] and facilitation scale) administered as part of an organisational behaviour course.

Main findings: Results indicated a positive relationship between the amount of information processed at work and turnover intention, one of the first studies to introduce this predictor of turnover intention among senior managers. In the search for potential organisational levers for intervention, a moderated-mediated analysis showed that workplace decision autonomy matters for turnover intention only when WFC is high.

Practical/managerial implications: Avenues for potential organisational intervention to improve retention of senior managers are suggested.

Contribution/value-add: This study contributes to the literature of Industrial/Organisational Psychology research in the context of turnover intentions by showing how information overload can affect turnover intentions.



turnover intention; amount of information processed; engagement; workplace decision autonomy; work-family conflict


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