Workers Most Invested in Their Jobs
Have Highest Stress Levels
workplace's key employees may be at the greatest risk of experiencing
high levels of work stress, according to a new study by the Centre for
Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH).
a survey of 2,737 workers, 18 percent reported that their job was
odds of having high stress were greater if workers were managers or
professionals, if they thought their poor job performance could
negatively affect others, or if they worked long or variable hours. The
study was published in International Journal of Occupational
and Environmental Medicine.
people who report high stress are the ones most invested in their
jobs," said Dr. Carolyn Dewa, Senior Scientist and Head of CAMH's Work
and Well-being Research and Evaluation Program. "Employers should be
very concerned with keeping this population healthy. From a business
perspective, it is in a company's best interest to support these
job characteristics associated with stress pointed to workers who were
engaged and responsible. If workers felt their poor job performance
could result in any physical injury, damage to company's equipment or
reputation, or a financial loss, they were twice as likely to report
a worksite remote from their home, or having to entertain or travel for
their jobs also increased the odds of being stressed. So did variable
hours such as being on call, doing shift work or having a compressed
stress can lead to burnout, and can worsen existing mental health
problems or physical disability.
study's goal was to learn how workers view their responsibilities and
job characteristics, and their experience with stress. This information
could be used to help develop interventions targeting both workers and
their work environment, which is considered a more effective approach.
is important that employees have access to resources that address their
mental health concerns. In the long run, these interventions can help
save some of the annual $17 billion in lost productivity in Canada,"
said Dewa. "Employers should be asking, 'What am I doing to reduce
stress in my most valuable people?'"
survey included Alberta adults aged 18 to 65 who had worked the
previous year in full range of settings, including offices,
manufacturing, construction, farming and services, among others. Dewa
notes, "These sources of stress that we identified will be the same for
Canadian workerswherever they are based, as they held true across
different locations and workplaces in our survey."
the other end of the scale, 82 percent of workers reported low or no
stress. This group was more likely to be male, single, under the age of
25 or work in a small business. In addition, if workers were satisfied
with their jobs, they were less likely to identify their jobs as being
more information on the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, visit www.camh.net