An Interview with Janicke-Bowels
By Yuxin Wu, Emily Castro and Steph Gonzalez

An Interview with Janicke-Bowels

Intro

We had an interview with Sophie Janicke-Bowles, a professor at Chapman University, regarding her study on the impact of different kinds of video on work-related well-being. In the study, Dr. Janicke-Bowles and her colleagues had an online experiment with 200 full-time employees in the US to explore the role of inspiring effect and positive effect on three distinct well-being outcomes: subjective well-being, psychological well-being, and social well-being at the workplace. 

The result of the study shows that cyberslacking in the form of watching Youtube videos at work seems to have a generally positive impact on the employee’s well-being. Media consumed over a period of 3-4 min seemed to reduce employees’ stress levels significantly. Elevating and gratitude inspiring videos can increase employees’ energy levels and remind them about the good things in life, making them experience their work as more meaningful. However, purely funny videos seem not to have a direct or indirect effect on employees’ well-being.

Interview

What drew you to the experiment, and how did you get involved? What drew you to wanna write the paper?

Janicke-Bowles started this study as her research is in the area of emotion in media. She knew that people in the workforce always consume video and media. Therefore, she wants to see if different kinds of videos would actually affect their well-being. Because there was a perception that slacking off at work is bad for us, she wanted to see if slack off at work could also be positive.

Would you want to re-do the experiment and see how the data has changed?

Janicke-Bowles will probably do something different, not just repeating the same study. Experiments often take a long time to grade and publish. She sees no reason to re-do the study. In her opinion, the context has not changed. So if she re-does the experiment, her group wouldn’t have a new outcome since much has not changed within the last four years. Since the context has not changed, the data will not change. Therefore, she wouldn’t repeat it.

Out of the four conditions(Gratitude, elevation, fun, and control), which do you believe to be most effective?

She found that it really depends on the exploring outcome. It is based on the theories you might have to add when you write a paper, so it really all depends. When it comes to the four conditions, it depends, especially when you are dealing with entertainment. Some can be more effective in one study while other conditions will be more effective in another. It’s not that this is the most effective one; it really depends on your research study. Each research study is unique, and no two are alike. Thus, she doesn’t think that there is one that is the most effective for all. As we can see in the chart below, they are almost all equally matched. But as we can see, Gratitude is the most effective for her study. 

If you do the research again, what else will you want to change or add something?

Janicke-Bowles has been doing continuous research exploring how our well-being and how it is influencing our workplace workforce. She finds her study very interesting and would like to do it again. She would try the study again; she would just have to find some funding for it. For her particular study, she had some funding and was able to get people to participate in her research. Because there needs to be funding to make the participation go forward, funding is necessary. Volunteers don’t necessarily participate in these types of research for free. So she would add more funding to get subjects to participate in her research.

Why are you interested in this topic? What do you wish your research result can be applied to? 

Janicke-Bowles was interested in this topic because her job within the research was always based on people’s self-perception and emotions within the media. She wanted to discover if there are positive effects from media and videos, just like there are adverse effects. She was very interested in the way video consumption specifically impacts the workforces’ perception of their lives and the events occurring within their days. 

How did you divide the work among your team members to make your paper fluid?

Janicke-Bowles advises that when you write papers on research as a group, there must always be a leader. The leader organizes and manages the team strategically, where they assign the other members subordinate sections from the study to write based on their strengths and knowledge in the field. Once everyone has their information and has written out their sections, they turn it into the leader. The leader then revises the writing and makes sure the entire paper is cohesive—the leader’s goal to produce one voice for the entire paper. 

Conclusion

Talking with Janicke-Bowles has helped our group understand what it is like to work as a constructive group when conducting research. Regardless of the type of research a team performs, a team needs to be organized, respectful, and disciplined to be successful. It is crucial for all members to be organized when doing their work. Everyone should understand their specific tasks and keep track of their information so that nothing is lost when putting together the entire paper. Everybody should be respectful towards the whole team because it takes everybody to create the final product. When addressing complications, talk about it, not accuse or demean anyone. All members should be aware of deadlines to never be rushed, incomplete, or missing. These practices are essential in order for a group to work efficiently together and produce a strong paper. Her study was fascinating and a key reason why we chose to interview her. As young college students, I think we all have experienced different kinds of videos affecting our well-being.

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