STRESS:The Data Behind the Dysfunction

Stress in America Report, APA 2015

How Do Leaders Address Stress?

Leaders with the power to identify how stress affects the overall health, productivity and morale of the entire organization set themselves apart by doing so. Tackling the causes of stress in individuals and in organizations leads to higher performance, fewer missed days and, most importantly, reinforces your company truly cares for its employees. Start diagnosing stress – and begin creating a healthier, more productive workplace by using TTI SI’s Stress Quotient™.

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Is Your Stress Tolerable or at a Tipping Point?

%

Report experiencing at least one stress symptom in the last month

%

Feel depressed or sad due to stress in the last month

%

Say stress has kept them awake at night in the last month

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Say stress has increased in the past year

Stress in America Report, APA 2015

1. DEMAND
Being challenged at work can escalate into having a highly demanding job. Often a result of poorly designed jobs, stress resulting from excessive demand happens when workloads become overwhelming or skills or talents don’t match the position.
2. EFFORTS/REWARD BALANCE
When high levels of output and effort are met with minimal rewards – whether that be compensation, a promotion or simple recognition for a job well done – an individual’s stress can skyrocket. Without an effort/reward balance, an employee can feel disconnected, unmotivated and even angry.
3. CONTROL
Feeling powerless is a universal cause of job stress. Lack of control comes from high responsibility paired with low authority, not being heard, not being involved and others not understanding your work.
4. ORGANIZATION CHANGE
Changes within the organization– from management restructuring to new policies and procedures – impact individuals differently. For some, it brings apprehension, insecurity and confusion – all which can raise stress levels when changes are not properly communicated or understood.
5. MANAGER/SUPERVISOR
Reasonable directives from your boss should be expected. It’s when he or she creates enormous pressure or challenges, to the point of it hindering your workload, that cause stress to increase.
6. SOCIAL SUPPORT
An unsupportive social environment can cause workplace stress. Managers who don’t provide clear and consistent information and co-workers who fail to assist one another leaves employees feeling unengaged and unproductive.
7. JOB SECURITY
Fearing for your job is extremely stressful. However, stress can also be caused by lack of advancement, being promoted too slowly or being promoted too quickly to be successful in the job

Stress Quotient™:
How It Works

What’s the Stress Quotient in YOUR Workplace?

Learn how one manager used Stress Quotient to rebuild the performance, morale and productivity of his team.

Group Stress Index Summary

Like an illness, stress can spread throughout an office and have a controlling effect on team dynamics. As this summary graph shows, stress has greatly impacted the organization (18 employees were surveyed) as 94 percent of the department has elevated and significant stress levels. The Organizational Change Index tells us how stress has a perceived impact on organizational communication, or how policies, procedures and other policies are communicated, as well as achieving change for the future. Stress also has a large, perceived impact on this group’s social support network; 73 percent of respondents believe there is a lack of cooperation and that people are consciously or unconsciously bypassing others or situations that might cause conflict.

Stress Symptoms

Stress can be a positive in our lives, spurring us into action to accomplish tasks. But often, stress is a negative, particularly when faced with continuous challenges we are not equipped to handle. Because we don’t always want to admit we’re stressed in the workplace, it can be a silent killer, as the symptoms aren’t always pronounced. Managing these physical and emotional symptoms allows us to better deal with stress. As this summary graph shows, behavioral stress symptoms, which include eating or sleeping issues, procrastination or other nervous habits, have had an effect on this group and impacted work at this organization. Physical and emotional symptoms, including low energy, frequent illness, irritability and feeling overwhelmed also scored high and are typically of major concern to employers. These stress-related issues tend to fester and impact productivity or one’s ability to show up to work.

Stress Effects Analysis

There’s good stress and bad stress. Good stress gets us up in the morning and allows us to deal with the challenges that help us learn and grow. But what about the bad, debilitating stress? Stress not only impacts us physically and emotionally, but also has a direct effect on how we perceive job security and workplace demands. As this graph matrix shows us, stress is festering for this individual, but it’s not happening at the surface level. In other words, this person likely won’t explode at work due to a buildup of uncontrolled emotions. The stressors impacting this individual include a real or perceived touchy relationship with their manager, as well as moderate concerns about their workload demand and the control they have on their work. The longer these issues go unchecked, the greater the possibility there is for this individual to experience burnout and even heightened stress in these areas.

Stress Factor – Effort/Reward Balance

Job satisfaction stems not only from enjoying the work itself, but also rewards in the form of compensation, benefits and overall satisfaction based on aligned cultural values. When those desires aren’t met and workloads pile up, stress and burnout can build slowly over time, creating a significant disconnect between workplace needs and satisfaction. As this graph shows, this individual views the work as genuinely meaningful, but feels he is not being properly recognized or rewarded for his contribution. Is someone taking credit for his work? Does he believe he’s not getting fairly compensated? Calling attention to this impasse can certainly help lessen the stress this individual has regarding workplace recognition and rewards.


Understanding The Signs of Stress

Physical Symptoms

The common physical symptoms of stress include:

  • Low energy
  • Aches and pains
  • Frequent illness

Emotional Symptoms

The common emotional symptoms of stress include:

  • Irritability
  • Feeling overwhelmed
  • Moodiness

Cognitive Symptoms

The common cognitive symptoms of stress include:

  • Inability to concentrate
  • Memory problems
  • Poor judgment

Behavioral Symptoms

The common behavioral symptoms of stress include:

  • Eating or sleeping issues
  • Procrastination
  • Nervous habits

STRESS: The Data Behind the Dysfunction

Sign up NOW for this Transformative Webinar

One of the most universal sources of workplace problems is stress — yet companies rarely understand how to identify it, let alone address it.

Stress and anxiety lie beneath the surface, something employees learn to cope with until they choose to escape the stress by leaving their jobs or becoming totally disengaged. Left unaddressed it festers and spreads, slowly crippling the team.

But what if you had the foresight to spot stress in its infancy before it spirals out of control?

In this webinar, we will show you how to:

  • get a pulse on your company’s stress levels
  • explore seven common origins of workplace stress
  • begin to strategize a plan to address problem areas

Register today and take the first step in understanding if your organization has reached its stress tipping point.

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