Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Can you please put it out? Predicting non-smokers' assertiveness intentions at work


Objective The present study aimed to identify the psychosocial predictors of non-smoker employee intentions to ask smokers not to smoke at work. The predictive effects of past behaviour, anticipated regret, social norms, attitudinal, outcome expectancy and behavioural control beliefs were investigated in relation to the Attitudes–Social influence–self-Efficacy (ASE) model.

Methods Data were collected from Greek non-smoker employees (n=137, mean age=33.5, SD=10.5, 54.7% female) in 15 companies. The main outcome measure was assertiveness intention. Data on participants' past smoking, age, gender and on current smoking policy in the company were also collected.

Results The majority of employees (77.4%) reported being annoyed by exposure to passive smoking at work, but only 37% reported having asked a smoker colleague not to smoke in the last 30 days. Regression analysis showed that the strongest predictor of non-smokers' assertiveness intentions was how often they believed that other non-smokers were assertive. Perceived control over being assertive, annoyance with secondhand smoke (SHS) exposure at work and past assertive behaviour also significantly predicted assertiveness intentions.

Conclusions Assertiveness by non-smoker employees seems to be guided mainly by normative and behavioural control beliefs, annoyance with SHS exposure at work, and past behaviour. Interventions to promote assertiveness in non-smokers might benefit from efficacy training combined with conveying the messages that the majority of other non-smokers are frequently annoyed by exposure to SHS, and that nearly half of all non-smokers are assertive towards smokers.

  • Assertiveness
  • workplace smoking
  • Greece
  • environmental tobacco smoke

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.