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Loneliness at Work Palce

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Master Program in
Global Entrepreneurial Management

Advisor: Dr. Chun-Chi Yang

Loneliness at the Workplace, Why and How to Reduce in Chinese Culture Context


Hanchao Liu



Title of Thesis: Loneliness Epidemic at the work, why and how to reduce

               In Chinese culture context

Name of Institute: Master Program in Global Entrepreneurial Management, Fu Jen Catholic University

Name of Student: Hanchao Liu                    Advisor: Dr. Chun-Chih Yang

Total Pages: 38


It is may not surprise you that Loneliness has becomes a popular and serious harmful epidemic in the world. It defined as complicated and unpleasant emotion that refers to isolation.

Loneliness is not only bad for our health, but also bad for work performance. At work, it reduce task performance , limits the decision making and creativity. According to the research, over 40% of American worker report feeling lonely, and research suggests that the real number may well be higher. Due to the serious harmfulness and importance, we establish this study. This study contributes to variety of research domains.

 This study elucidates the various concepts of loneliness under the different culture, specially for the difference in chinses culture, which also analyze the unique Chinese culture by Hofstede model and relationship between culture and acknowledge. Further more, It integrates different kinds of work loneliness under the different culture. Base on the professional material and interview, it analyze the solution from two aspects of employees and managers for reducing work loneliness. Its goes is to help reader to know the work loneliness more deeply, also for how to reduce the work loneliness in different situation. 

Key words : Loneliness , epidemic , performance, work loneliness, Chinese culture , Hofstede  

Table of Contents


Chapter I Introduction

  1. Definition of loneliness

What is the loneliness?Different people have different have different answers . In western culture , there are many people define at Loneliness. Latin American famous author Gabriel Garcia Marques author of (One Hundred Years of Solitude) ever said : Loneliness is the lack of ability to love .

“Loneliness, also could defined as an obnoxious emotional condition where human feels estranged from or rejected by others and feels deprived of secure and close relationships in his/her social environment’’(Rook, 1984).It is because loneliness is a kind of inner interpersonal emotion. Loneliness is also the subjective feeling of insufficient social relationship.

There is substantial evidence from both the social psychology and neuropsychology literatures showing that loneliness is an emotion that reflects a fundamental but also transient human motivational state, very much like hunger, thirst or pain; and that the traditional conception of loneliness as a form of depression, shyness or poor social skills is inaccurate (Cacioppo and Patrick, 2008). In other way to say that : loneliness is a kind of natural emotional reaction , it can not avoid and will accompany with the human being in the life .

From now on, We can infer that Loneliness was caused by social emotional ,physical and cognitive deviation.

1.2 The definition for Loneliness in Chinese culture

With many evidence said that, one of the means ensure Loneliness is a bad emotional experience for person, it only can take a bad impact for people on the life and work performance. But we found that : In the ancient Chinese culture, there is a different sense for Loneliness.

Under the 5,000 years of feudal culture, most individual identity and freedom of people were taken place by the king or feudal power. People are more like a victim without thoughts. Sometimes , to be loneliness also can seen as thoughtful. In now a days, Loneliness is endowed with some positive significance. Chen         Guo, Professor of Fu Dan university in Shai Hai, said in her book “ Loneliness has great spiritual power, you can thoroughly remould  yourself when you find it.” (Good loneliness Chen Guo 2017 ). She mentioned that loneliness also have a good perspective, when we are alone, we can truly know ourselves and get the high level spirit freedom. Most philosophers are to be alone., But they almost don't talk about loneliness. Because they enjoy the loneliness.

As we can seen, many different perspectives of loneliness illustrate the difference culture between western and eastern.

  1. Loneliness in work

Have you feel alone in your work place? Have you feel hard to make friends in your company? May be you are suffering the work loneliness Epidemic .

Work loneliness now becoming more and more serious healthy epidemic in the world. More and more experts and scholars begin to research the work loneliness. Vivek H. Murthy ,who served as the 19th Surgeon General of the United States, from 2014 to 2017 ever said in his article: “There is good reason to be concerned about social connection in our current world. Loneliness is a growing health epidemic. We live in the most technologically connected age in the history of civilization, yet rates of loneliness have doubled since the 1980s” ( Work and loneliness epidemic , Vivek H. Murthy 2017 )

A research illustrate that there are over 40% adult people in America feeling alone, and the number will be higher in the future. Additionally, the number of people who report having a close confidante in their lives has been declining over the past few decades. In the workplace, many employees — and half of CEOs — report feeling lonely in their roles  ( work and loneliness epidemic , Vivek H. Murthy 2017 )

António Horta-Osório , CEO of Liyods bank , who also can attest work loneliness are ubiquitous even for the executive officer. He told to The British newspaper  (Financial Times) : “ These positions is quite lonely. As a chief executive officer, sometimes you can not share your emotion and feeling to your team. Because you should to encourage them . You do not want your employee to doubt your leader ability.” It is interesting to note that executive officer or employee is become lonely. Because they tend to take some responsibility individually , For instance Layoffs, reduce resource in the process of budget restructuring and some hard work



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