Organizational Behavior (Work-Related Stress)

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Organizational Behavior|
a) What are the major sources of work-related stress? b) Examine the role of gender in work-related stress| |
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Adnan Malik – H00133313
Chris Andrew D’Silva – H00115516
Muhammad Mohsin – H00114888
Muhammad Hammad Malik - 091616937

Word Count: 2200
Date: 27/10/2012

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This essay aims to discuss major sources of work-related stress and provide an analysis of the reasons that cause stress among both males and females, and whether similarities exist between them. So, what is stress? Comprehensively, stress is a typical instinctive reaction to situations that make one feel pressured or agitated in any way. For instance, when a person senses any sort of threat, he/she delivers an automatic stress response or the “fight or flight” reaction. Thus, this reaction is the body’s means to protect themself. Moreover, stress can help a person to remain attentive and focussed during their course of work, and aid them to complete tasks or meet deadlines. In case of an emergency, stress can also help one defend or protect their life. Beyond a particular level however, stress is no longer helpful and begins to cause damage to one’s health, productivity and lifestyle (Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety, 2000). Therefore, it is important to determine when one undergoes stress, the reasons for it as well as the many ways through which, they can cope with it. All this can improve their psychological and mental well-being significantly. As identified by The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) using Palmer Et Al and Cary Cooper’s developments of the working models of work-related stress, there are six significant likely sources of stress or stressors at a work place in general. These are: work demands, work relationships, a person’s control over work, an individual’s role within an organization, career development and the interface between home and work. To begin with, work demands and physical demands consist of stressors that are constitutive to the job. These include working environments, workload (overload and underload), working hours and even technology to a certain extent. Working environments: It is obvious that undesirable working settings such as workplaces with high levels of noise, bad lightings or extreme temperature can stress workers and down their performances. Furthermore, this can give rise to mental as well as physical illnesses or disorders. Workload: employees usually endure a surplus of workload (work overload) or a deficit of workload (work under load). The two are quantitative and qualitative by nature and may result in elevated stress levels. Quantitative overload relates to circumstances wherein workers are required to do a lot more work in a stipulated time period and qualitative overload refers to situations in which workers believe that they would be unable to perform required tasks because they lack the ability or expertise needed. Likewise, quantitative and qualitative work under load also leads to stress, although, it may not be so evident. Quantitative under load occurs when workers tend to get bored as a result of having very little work with a lot of available time. Whereas qualitative under load relates to an employee’s feeling of reduced motivation due to their dull or monotonous job routine. Working hours: working for long hours can lead to stress; diminishing a worker’s productivity and consequently lead to mental or physical ill-health. A recent study states that working for 11 hours a day can increase possibilities of a heart disease due to high stress levels. The study features at the same level to individuals who smoke; individuals who have high cholesterol levels and even individuals with high blood pressure. Technology: similarly, reports have revealed that excessive use certain information technology (IT) in companies by its employees can also...
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