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An investigation of predictors of successful aging in the workplace among Hong Kong Chinese older workers

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  14 October 2011

Francis Cheung*
Department of Sociology and Social Policy, Lingnan University, Hong Kong
Anise M. S. Wu
Department of Psychology, University of Macau, Macao
Correspondence should be addressed to: Dr. Francis Cheung, Department of Sociology and Social Policy, Lingnan University, Tuen Mun, Hong Kong. Phone: +852 2616–7198, Fax: +852 2891–7940. Email:


Background: We examined associations between successful aging in the workplace (adaptability and health, positive relationship, occupational growth, personal security, and continuous focus on goals) and two major factors of work stressors (work family conflict and discrimination against older workers) and coping resources (perceived organizational support, supportive human resource policies, and social support from friends and family) among Chinese older workers in Hong Kong. Furthermore, we also examined whether coping resources moderate the negative effect derived from work stressors on successful aging.

Methods: A total of 242 Chinese full-time workers aged 40 years or above were recruited in a self-administered questionnaire survey study in Hong Kong.

Results: Hierarchical regression results showed that family-to-work conflict was significantly related to successful aging, except the dimension of personal security. Work-to-family conflict and discrimination, however, were not related to successful aging in the workplace. In terms of coping resources, perceived organizational support was related to all dimensions of successful aging in the workplace. We also found that training and development was a significant correlate of occupational growth. Social support from friends and family was positively related to three successful aging dimensions, including adaptability and health, personal security and continuous focus on goals. Finally, when facing discrimination in the workplace, support from organizations and from friends and family were particularly important for old-older workers (aged 55 years or above) to achieve better adaptability and health.

Conclusions: Perceived organizational support and social support from friends and family were important correlates of successful aging in the workplace. Limitation and recommendations for organizational intervention were discussed.

Research Article
Copyright © International Psychogeriatric Association 2011

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