Being stressed has become a cliché. No one seems to be taking it seriously anymore. It has become symbiotic with life.
In "It's not sex. It's not drinking. It's stress and it's soaring,"
research shows that six in ten workers in major global economies are
experiencing increased workplace stress and 80% of workers feel stress
on the job. Nearly half say they need help in learning how to manage
stress and 42% say their co-workers need such help. While these stats
may shock us, what we're not seeing is the effect of stress beyond these
If our stress increases,
it can take a toll on our health. But in the workplace, if left
unchecked, employee stress can decrease productivity and this directly
impacts the organization's bottom line.
Stress at work can
be caused by a variety of factors including job overload, people
problems, work environment, and work overload.
If a person is
experiencing job overload, the person is in the wrong job. Some experts
believe that re-designing the job to suit the employee's career path may
help decrease stress, but this rarely happens. Employees usually leave
their existing jobs in search of better careers and reduce their stress.
are what they are - sometimes working with people whose
personalities are not compatible with our own cannot be helped. Our
choices include tolerating the situation (and by doing so, increasing
our stress), improving the situation by developing assertiveness or
coping skills, building interpersonal skills that help us work with
teams and resolve conflict, or getting a new job.
environment is also another area that people can easily control -
reconfiguring furniture for maximum creativity, reducing background
noise, improving lighting - these can all help to reduce stress.
stressor, however, is work overload. This one is sometimes beyond the
control of the individual and relies on the organization to take action.
Work overload may be the key constraint to efficiency and productivity.
The culprits of
work overload that create the biggest bottlenecks and stressful
situations are inefficient systems and processes. It is the employers'
responsibility to provide systems and processes that are efficient and
contribute to employee wellbeing.
aside, stress can cause severe health problems and in extreme cases, can
cause death. The effects of stress on heart health and the immune
system are well documented, but stress can also manifest in behavior
changes such as smoking, drinking, overeating, sleeping poorly, reducing or stopping exercising, poor nutrition, and other behaviors that will likely harm health.
Still flippant about stress? We have no reason to be.