Role Hassles Index


This measure, (Role Hassles Index) developed by Zohar (1997), is designed to capture specific episodes over the past 2 weeks of role conflict, role ambiguity, and role over­ load. Burnout is thought to develop when emotional or physical resources are depleted at a rate that exceeds replenishment. It is possible that measures of role conflict and ambiguity that ask respondents to report the extent to which a condition is present may not capture the imbalance between expen­diture and replenishment (Zohar, 1997). Respondents to this measure are asked to identify the date when the episode occurred and to rate the episode in terms of its degree of disruption. The disruption scores are summed to yield three subscales for hassles-conflict, hassles-ambiguity, and hassles­ overload.


In Zohar (1997), the composite Role Hassles Index had a coefficient alpha of .88. Coefficient alpha was .80 for the hassles-conflict subscale, .71 for the hassles-ambiguity subscale, and .82 for the hassles-overload subscale.


Zohar (1997) examined the 20 items with factor analysis and found three factors corresponding to conflict, ambiguity, and overload. The overall Role Hassles Index and the subscales for hassles-conflict, hassles-ambiguity, and hassles-overload correlated positively with role conflict, ambiguity, and overload. The hassles subscales also all correlated positively with exhaus­ tion, depersonalization, and reduced accomplishment (Zohar, 1997).


Zohar, D. (1997). Predicting burnout with a hassle-based measure of role demands. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 18(2), 101-115. Items were taken from Table 1, p. 107. Copyright© 1997. Reproduced by permission of John Wiley & Sons Limited.


Instructions and items:

Employees are instructed to review the list of 20 events and to indicate which had occurred in the past 2 weeks. For an event to be marked, the sub­ ject is required to recall the date. Each event is then rated as to how emotion­ ally or physically disruptive it was on the day it occurred using a 3-point Likert-type scale where l = slightly disruptive 2 = quite disruptive, and 3 = very disruptive.

The events are as follows:

Hassles conflict:

  1. Had an argument or confrontation over differing views
  2. Encountered an attempt to step into my territory
  3. Encountered a lack of cooperation or an inconsideration
  4. Had difficulty convincing a superior of an important issue
  5. Had to interact with an inconsiderate or disliked person
  6. Received a negative or critical comment
  7. Had to deal with conflicting expectations from different people
  8. Had difficulties receiving feedback from superiors

Hassles overload:

  1. Felt under time pressure, had difficulty due to insufficient time
  2. Had too much or too many things to take care of
  3. Had to stay too many extra hours or do inconvenient shift-work schedule
  4. Had difficulty in completing a task due to bureaucratic constraints
  5. Had too few resources (help, equipment, budget) for dealing with a task
  6. Had to waste time over some unimportant activity
  7. Had insufficient formal authority to do things my way

Hassles ambiguity:

  1. Had concerns about how to solve a problem
  2. Had to take action without knowing exactly what was expected of me
  3. Made a mistake or was concerned over making one
  4. Had difficulty obtaining needed information
  5. Had to respond without clear priorities or goals

This content is licensed under a CC-BY license. The CC-BY licenses grant rights of use the scales in your studies (the measurement instrument and its documentation), but do not replace copyright. This remains with the copyright holder, and you have to cite us as the source.

Mohammed Looti, PSYCHOLOGICAL SCALES (2023) Role Hassles Index. Retrieved from DOI: 10.13140/RG.2.2.31575.96163