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Job Stress By the Numbers

September 20, 2012 Leave a comment Go to comments

M15With employee stress levels reportedly rising across the nation, isn’t it time you found out exactly how stressed your workers really are? Try this easy-to-use survey.

Dr. Paul Rosch, president of the American Institute of Stress (AIS), warns employers to be wary of studies claiming to objectively measure workplace stress. Many, he notes, are highly subjective and reflect the point of view of the organization sponsoring or conducting them. When and how data are collected can also influence outcomes.

AIS has created a job stress survey that can help reveal employee stress levels. Survey participants are asked to assign a number from 1 to 10 to the following statements (where 1 means the responder strongly disagrees and 10 means strongly agrees).

  • I can’t honestly say what I really think or get things off my chest a work.
  • My job has a lot of responsibility, but I don’t have very much authority.
  • I could usually do a much better job if I were given more time.
  • I seldom receive adequate acknowledgment or appreciation when my work is really good.
  • In general, I am not particularly proud of or satisfied with my job.
  • I have the impression that I am repeatedly picked on or discriminated against at work.
  • My workplace environment is not very pleasant or particularly safe.
  • My job often interferes with family/social obligations or personal needs.
  • I tend to have frequent arguments with superiors, co-workers, or customers.
  • Most of the time I feel I have very little control over my life at work.

Scoring

According to AIS:

  • A score of 10-30 means one is handling stress well.
  • A score of 40-60 indicates job stress is being handled moderately well.
  • A score of 70-100 suggests problems that need to be addressed and resolved.

Undervalued and Stressed Out

Many American workers feel undervalued and stressed out, according to a 2011 survey by the American Psychological Association (APA), which found that 36 percent of workers reported experiencing work stress regularly. Among sources of dissatisfaction and stress, employees pointed to low salaries, lack of opportunity for growth and advancement, heavy workloads, unrealistic job expectations, and long hours.

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