Despite increased research attention, the emotional labor construct remains without a clear conceptualization and operationalization. This study designed a conceptually grounded, psychometrically sound instrument to measure emotional labor with an emphasis on the experience of discrete emotions - the Discrete Emotions Emotional Labor Scale (DEELS). This conceptualization and operationalization of emotional labor departs from existing efforts because it focuses on the behavior of emotional expression, encompassing genuine, faked, and suppressed positive and negative emotional displays. Results provide initial evidence for the convergent, discriminant, and criterion-related validity of the DEELS.
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Portions of this research were supported by a Grant-In-Aid of Research, Artistry and Scholarship from the University of Minnesota. We are particularly grateful to the organizations that participated in this research.