Research suggests that there are substantial differences in the ways in which people cope with stress, and that certain coping strategies buffer the degree of psychological and physical illness resulting from stress. Furthermore, personality, the situational context and subjective appraisal of the situation are believed to mediate coping behaviour and its effectiveness. The present investigation reports the results of two studies of the relationship between coping behaviour and the personality disposition need for power, taking into account the environment and the subject's appraisal of the situation. Highly power-motivated individuals were hypothesized to utilize emotion-focused roping strategies more than problem-focused coping strategies, to find the training environment stressful and anxiety-provoking, and to report more illness, than low power-motivated individuals. A 19-week police academy training programme was used to measure these relationships in 34 police trainees. The results did not support all hypothoses. Findings are discussed with reference to sample characteristics, training intensity, and the empirical work in this area.
Work and Stress,
Vol. 11, no. 2 (Apr 1997), p. 186-195