Stress in the Workplace

Topics: Occupational health psychology, Major depressive episode, Major depressive disorder Pages: 7 (2575 words) Published: July 27, 2010
The purpose of this paper is to look at stress in the workplace and its effects on family, medical and work effectiveness. By looking at a few studies, this paper will show the relevance between stress from the job and depression and issues in the family, issues with health problems and low job performance.

Effective tools for dealing with stress will decrease stress, improve the physical and emotional/mental health of workers, increase worker productivity, improve worker satisfaction, and decrease interpersonal problems as a whole.

Stress in the workplace is a common occurrence that is dealt with in many ways, some positive and some negative; healthy ways to deal with stressors increases work satisfaction, decreases health problems, benefits relationships, and improves a person’s outlook on life. Stress is a part of everyday life and cannot be avoided completely. The way we cope with stress in the workplace affects our coworkers, employers, employees, our home life, our social life, and ourselves; it is important to raise awareness of this issue to benefit the aforementioned. It is also imperative for employers to take an active role in decreasing work related stress, hence increasing worker satisfaction, improving business, and promoting a positive work environment.

The research done on Major Depressive Episodes and Work Stress talks about the leading cause of disability is depression. It is believed that structural changes in the workplace over the last thirty years may have been some of the reasons for the increase stress.

This study is looking at proving that people that are experiencing higher job demands will be at “higher risk for 12 month major depressive episodes” (Blackmore, 2007). This study used an almost equal study of men and women, middle to upper class, and higher income level jobs. The study showed that there was a relationship between job stress and major depressive episode. The study showed that the reasons were different for men and women but still caused depression no matter the reason.

Workers and employers who do not deal with stressors effectively increase risk of physical health problems, mental health problems, relationship problems, and personal problems due to lack of knowledge on how to effectively cope with stress. This is of significant importance because of the impact we all have on one another in the workplace. A coworker or boss that has a negative attitude due to poor coping skills can have a negative domino effect on coworker/employees and the business as a whole. A company that does not provide solutions for stress in the workplace is setting itself up for negative events in the workplace. A person or company that handles stress effectively can have the opposite domino effect and be a positive to those around them and to the business. Some employers wait until a problem arises before any action is taken to manage stress in the workplace (Anonymous, 2009). In a study, done by the IRS Employment Review, it is found that “64% use the Health & Safety Executive’s management standards on work-related stress, but only 46% adopt the HSE’s model stress policy”. (Anonymous, 2009) It is counterproductive to confront a problem after the domino effect has already begun. It can be solved at any point in one way or another but it is much more effective to train workers in prevention and positive ways to cope with stress. Some problems in the workplace are not known until an event occurs so prevention is not the solution for all problems but it can decrease the outbreak of negative events. It can also make workers aware of steps to take when they are feeling stressed or overwhelmed. Larger companies tend to have programs in place associated with their Employee Assistance Programs (EAP). EAPs typically offer counseling and various other services that are beneficial in times of crisis.

In a January 2009...
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