Reducing stress and burnout at the workplace

Topics: Stress, Occupational health psychology, Employment Pages: 5 (1417 words) Published: February 23, 2014

This report contains a set of findings supporting the main ideas behind this proposal which is to help reduce the work-related stress and burnout. The information has been collected from four articles related to the matter, which has been observed and analysed in order to find out how the Human Resource department can contribute towards reducing this problem. This is a major setback within any organisation and The Schwartz Group is not an exception. Stress and burnout can lead to many different negative effects on the company’s employees and the company itself, such as depression, lack of concentration, aggression, and many others. If the stress continues, employees are likely to lose the interest or motivation that led them to take on a certain role in the first place. This is why I request that on the next board meeting there is a HR representative attending to help with taking actions and change a the way the company deals with this issue. Defining stress and burnout

Stress is a mental and physical condition that directly and negatively affects an individual’s productivity, effectiveness, personal health and quality of work. Job stress can be conceptualized as an individual’s reactions to work environment characteristics that appear threatening to him or her. The harmful and costly consequences of stress demonstrate the need for strategies to limit stressors within the organisation (Gill at al., 2006). Burnout is a syndrome or state of physical, emotional and mental exhaustion, as well as cynics towards one’s work in response to chronic organisational stressors (Gill at al., 2006). Looking from an organisation point of view it is obvious the impact would be harmful. Sources of stress

There is number of factors that can affect worker’s levels of stress. Poor working design, management and not good enough working conditions are just a few of many. Research findings show that the most stressful type of work is that which values excessive demands and pressures that are not matched to workers’ knowledge and abilities (Leka, 2003). Feeling unappreciated or not receiving the correct pay for the work he/she has done will certainly not motivate the employee but instead it will make the worker less encouraged to continue producing such level of work outcome. Workers might also experience role-related level of tension as some jobs are more stressful than others. Other stress-related Hazards

Job Content
Monotonous, under-stimulating, meaningless tasks
Lack of variety
Unpleasant tasks
Aversive tasks
Workload and Work pace
Having too much or too little to do
Working under time pressure
Working Hours
Strict and inflexible working schedule
Long and unsocial hours
Unpredictable working hours
Badly designed shift systems
Participation and Control
Lack of participation in decision making
Lack of control over working schedule (Leka, 2003)
What are the consequences

The consequences are depressing as stress affects many important segments of the business for example, the company’s performance and profitability and also their ability to expand and further develop. Every year there is large amount of money lost over this issue. The American Institute of Stress states that illnesses related to stress cost more than $300 billion per year (Losyk, 2006). Losyk also stated that according to a survey conducted in 2003, stress levels continue to rise and also along that an increase in stress-related illnesses and emotional problems as well as lower morale compared with those conditions one year ago. Uncertainty and insecurity create fear and apprehension in people. (Losyk 2006). Worried employees can not perform their jobs to the set standards, they are present at the work place but their mind is not where it should be. Stress in the workplace might direct to stress at home also known as work-family conflicts. When employees leave, companies lose...

References: Amarjit S. Gill, Alan B.Flaschner and Mickey Shachar. (2006). Mitigating stress and burnout by implementing transformational –leadership. International Journal of Contemporary Hospitaly Management. 18.6 (1), 469-481.
Kelliher, C., & Anderson, D. (2010). Doing more with less? Flexible working practices and the intensification of work. Human Relations, 63(1), 83-106
Leka et al.. (2003). Work Organization and stress. Available:
Last accessed 21 Apr. 2013.
Losyk, B. (2006). Getting a grip on stress. What HR managers must do to prevent burnout and turnover. Employment Relations Today, 33(1), 9-17
Parasuraman, S. & Alutto, J.A. (1984). Sources and Outcomes of Stress in Organizational Settings: Toward the Development of a Structural Model. Academy of Management Journal, 27(2), 330-350
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