Excessive or ongoing work stress affects individuals, and organizations.
It's expensive, it's unpleasant, and much of it is avoidable.
What Actually is Work Stress?
Stress is a physical and/or emotional reaction to a situation. In a work context, stress happens when we believe that the demands made of us exceed our resources to deal with them. However, work stress is about much more than demands. It's rooted in context around those demands.
Doesn't Everyone Face Work Stress?
According to The American Institute of Stress, 65% of workers say that workplace stress causes difficulties, and more than 10% described these as having major effects.
So What? Why is Work Stress Problematic, and What Are The "Major Effects"?
Not all work stress is problematic. Some amount of stress is actually beneficial, even necessary for productivity and to function well. However, acute (very high) or chronic (ongoing) stress is estimated to cost the US economy over $300B a year through ill-health and absenteeism, poor performance, lost productivity, and unwanted turnover. These costs negatively impact organizations, as well as individuals, their families, and society more widely.
Shouldn't I Just Squeeze a Stress Ball at My Desk?
Go for it. Here's the problem: This may help temporarily manage a symptom, but it won't touch the cause. Unfortunately, most mainstream attention to work stress is about employees managing symptoms. That's part of why work stress never seems to go away.
So Who Are You, and What Can You Do About It?
My name is Dr. Marcus J. Fila. I am a speaker, management consultant, and researcher who is dedicated to helping individuals manage stress, and organizational leaders reduce stress in their workforce. You can read more about me here.
What's the Good News?
Many of the underlying causes of work stress are in the hands of not only individual workers, but managers, and organizational leaders. There's a whole science behind it - and it's very practical, and implementable. The benefits are healthier, more productive workers who are more likely to be motivated and committed to the organization, and to stay. Proactively addressing work stress is a good way to win the competition for talent, and all the benefits that brings.
This podcast outlines work stress, and helping people and organizations to thrive. Additionally, check out upcoming events (below left), and ways I help individuals and organizations (below). Subscribe and join the growing group of professionals who want to stay in the know on work stress, and how to deal with it.