Is Your Job Killing You
Sometimes, when we say our job is killing us, we may not be exaggerating. Research conducted over time has linked sudden death and diseases to stress induced by jobs. This article seeks to expose who is at risk, the causes of stresses at work places and how this challenge can be alleviated by both employer and employees.
With Respect to Work Related Stress Death, Who Bears the Greatest Risk?
About 820 adults of ages 25-65 were surveyed for over a 20 year period. 53 died as the study started and they were likely to have reported an unfriendly work environment.
For middle aged workers who have poor interpersonal relationships at work are 2.4 times more likely to die.
It was surprising to discover that relationships with the boss had nothing to do with increased death levels despite the fact that it was the main reason for leaving the job.
The study also revealed that for women who had more power and control in the workplace were more likely to die as compared to those who did not feel in control.
Most Stressful Jobs
1. Commercial Pilot – Average earnings $106,153
2. Public Relations Office – Average earnings $90,160
3. Senior Corporate Executive – Average earnings $161,141
4. Photo Journalist – Average earnings $40,209
5. Newscaster – Average earnings $50,209
6. Advertising Account Executive – Average earnings $62,105
7. Architect – Average earnings $73,193
8. Stockbroker – Average earnings $67,470
9. Emergency Medical Technical – Average earnings $30,168
10. Real Estate Agent – Average earnings $40,357
Least Stressful Jobs
1. Audiologist – Average earnings $63,144
2. Dietician – Average earnings $52,127
3. Software Engineer – Average earnings $87,140
4. Computer Programmer – Average earnings $71,176
5. Dental Hygienist – Average earnings $67,107
6. Speech Pathologist – Average earnings $65,143
7. Philosopher – Average earnings $65,143
8. Mathematician – Average earnings $94,178
9. Occupational Therapist – Average earnings $70,193
10. Chiropractor – Average earnings $68,358
How Stressed Are We?
It has been discovered that out of 4 workers, they feel their job is the most stressful aspect of their lives while 3 out of 4 workers believe that there have been an increased level of job stress over the last generation.
About 25% of the sampled population feel burned out at work frequently, 29% feel they are extremely stressed at work while about 45% admit to their jobs being excessively stressful.
Most Common Causes of Work Stress
Many causes have been identified as the cause of stress at the workplace. Some of them are:
• Heavy work load.
• Management technique.
• Vague job description.
• Concerns of the future and job security.
• Restructuring the workplace.
• Personal challenges and home issues.
• Unhealthy work environment.
• Lack of support and bad relationship with co-workers.
• Physical and verbal abuse.
The research revealed that in the United States alone, about 20 workers are murdered every week. Physical and verbal abuse were also discovered to be the number one cause of death of women in the workplace and the number two cause of death overall. This also leads to over 18,000 cases of physical abuse.
How Co-Workers Cause Stress
There are several ways colleagues cause an increased stress levels of other co-workers. By manipulating them to obey orders, by justifying inappropriate behaviors and lifestyles, seemingly extreme similarity personality and work styles.
The leading cause of leave of absence in the United Kingdom is stress. Workers take over 4 weeks of leave and this rate surpasses the rates for heart attack, cancer, and back related issues. Hence, stress has been referred to as the 21st century equivalent of the Black Death. In the United States, the average worker takes an average of 20 days time off for issues related to anxiety disorders. This has resulted in increased spending on medical issues.
Stress is Linked
The following issues are linked to stress.
1. Heart Disease Research has revealed that women have a 40% rate of being affected by heart disease and there is a 25% increased likelihood for the occurrence in men.
2. Stroke There is a 50% increased likelihood of occurrence in men.
3. Obesity For an increase in weight by 40lbs prolonged work and repeated stressed have been found to be related.
Others have memory problems, aggravations of skin conditions, the accelerated progression of HIV/AIDS, digestive issues, depression, and sleep related issues.
Death from Overworking
In Japan, the word “Karoshi” is used to refer to “Death from Over Work.” It is documented that an estimated 10,000 managers, engineers, and company executives die from excessive work.
In China, 11 workers of the China’s Foxconn committed suicide by jumping from high rise buildings. The reason for suicide was given as excessive workload and neglect of spiritual needs.
How Can Employers Reduce Job Stress
• Workloads should be matched with the abilities of the workers.
• Workers should be allowed to grow and use their talents in their place of work.
• All workers should be made to know their job responsibilities.
• With respect to job related changes, workers should have a say.
• Employees should be full abreast with future development. This will give them a sense of belonging.
• Workers should be allowed to socialize whenever it is necessary.
• Work schedules should be sensible.
How Can Employees Reduce Stress Levels
The following are recommended ways for employees to reduce stress levels for themselves.
• Eat well.
• Perform exercise regularly.
• Get sufficient sleep.
• Employ relaxation techniques.
• Communicate properly with friends.
• Always laugh and make jobs.
• When necessary, seek counselors.