Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)



First Advisor

Patrick D. Converse

Second Advisor

Gary Burns

Third Advisor

Brooke Wheeler

Fourth Advisor

Robert A. Taylor


Workplace intrusions are commonplace in every organization. Limited preliminary work (e.g., Moon et al., 2020) is beginning to suggest that certain individuals may be more susceptible to workplace interruptions. Yet, it is unclear why individual differences may predict interruptions and how unexpected interruptions throughout the workday can be mitigated. Thus, this study examined these issues, focusing on dispositional self-control and planning as potential antecedents of intrusions as well as task performance and work-related stress as potential consequences of intrusions. Specifically, this research first adds to the literature by examining dispositional self-control as a predictor of the experience of workplace intrusions. Second, we examined planning implications for workplace intrusions. Third, we differentiated planning from similar constructs and empirically examined it as a self-control mechanism. These issues were investigated in a study involving a combination of dispositional measures and a daily survey throughout the course of a work week using participants from MTurk and snowball sampling (N = 165). Results indicated that dispositional self-control did not predict planning, but it did

predict intrusions and work-related stress; planning predicted intrusions and task performance, but not work-related stress; and intrusions predicted task performance and work-related stress. However, no indirect effects were found in the hypothesized direction. This study (a) supports the notion from prior research that dispositional self-control predicts interruption frequency and provides empirical evidence suggesting dispositional self-control also predicts interruption severity; (b) indicates planning may not play an important role in this relationship, indirectly suggesting that unconscious mechanisms (e.g., habits and routines) might play a more prevalent role than conscious mechanisms (e.g., planning); and (c) confirms intrusions are detrimental to both performance and well-being.


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