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Occupational Stress. Chapter 16. Chapter Overview. Definition, contexts, and importance of occupational stress Disease and occupational stress Occupational stressors The workaholic Burnout Women and work outside the home Sexual harassment Working in the home Interventions.

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Presentation Transcript
chapter overview
Chapter Overview
  • Definition, contexts, and importance of occupational stress
  • Disease and occupational stress
  • Occupational stressors
  • The workaholic
  • Burnout
  • Women and work outside the home
  • Sexual harassment
  • Working in the home
  • Interventions
what is occupational stress
What Is Occupational Stress?
  • First, complete Lab 16.1
  • Pertains to sources of stress at work
  • Involves individual characteristics
  • Related to the employee’s role within the organization
multi faceted look at occupational stress


Work setting




Physical/ Environmental

Multi-faceted Look at Occupational Stress

Occupational Stress Evaluation Grid (Table 16.1) recognizes that occupational stress occurs in seven different contexts:

why is occupational stress of concern
Why Is Occupational Stress of Concern?
  • Cost to businesses was >$200 billion/year, (Swoboda, 1992); probably much more now
  • Employees “always on call” concept
  • Leads to increased sick days, drug or alcohol abuse, and early death
  • Can promote high turnover rates of employees
  • Liability (i.e., workers’ compensation, disability, or litigation)
did you know
Did You Know?
  • Absences attributed to stress tripled between 1995 and 2004
  • 62% of the time when workers called in “sick,” they were not really “sick”
  • Most heart attacks occur on Mondays
gender and occupational stress
Gender and Occupational Stress
  • Stressors that particularly affect women include:
    • Career blocks
    • Sexual harassment
    • Male-dominated climate
    • Performance pressure
    • Gender stereotyping
    • Isolation
    • Lack of role models
occupational stress and disease
Occupational Stress and Disease
  • Physiological effects
    • Elevated serum cholesterol
    • Elevated blood pressure
    • Increased left ventricular mass
    • Increased catecholamines
    • High plasma fibrinogen concentrations
occupational stress and disease cont
Occupational Stressand Disease (cont.)
  • Disease states
    • Coronary artery disease
    • Obesity
    • Psychosomatic symptoms
    • Diabetes
    • Hypertension
    • Peptic ulcers
  • Lack of control over amount of work and work-related processes appears to be a major factor in whether stress will affect an employee’s health
control demands interaction
Control/Demands Interaction


Psychological Demands

occupational stress and disease cont12
Occupational Stressand Disease (cont.)
  • Psychological effects
    • Low self-esteem
    • Increased job tension
    • Low job satisfaction
occupational stressors
Occupational Stressors
  • Workers feel stress at work because of:
    • Lack of participation in decision-making process
    • Role problems
      • Role overload
      • Role insufficiency
      • Role ambiguity
      • Role conflict
occupational stressors cont
Occupational Stressors (cont.)
  • Workers feel stress at work because of: (cont.)
    • Job dissatisfaction
      • Motivational factors affect job satisfaction
    • Work environment
the workaholic
The Workaholic
  • Immersing oneself excessively in work at the expense of nonwork activities
  • Identifying oneself more with the role of a worker rather than as an individual
  • Are you a person who happens to be a student, or are you a student who happens to be a person?
the workaholic cont
The Workaholic (cont.)
  • Two factors for classifying workaholics (Naughton, 1987)
    • Career commitment (CC)
    • Obsession-compulsion (OC)
  • Naughton believed there were three types of workaholics:
    • Job-involved workaholics (high CC, low OC)
    • Compulsive workaholics (high CC, high OC)
    • Non workaholics (low CC, low OC)
the workaholic cont18
The Workaholic (cont.)
  • Scott et al. (1997) classified workaholics as:
    • Compulsive-dependent
    • Perfectionist
  • Spence & Robbins (1992) proposed a workaholic triad:
    • Work involvement, drive, and work enjoyment
ways to combat workaholism
Ways to Combat Workaholism
  • Focus on the work you most like doing, work that you wouldn’t mind “doing for free”
  • Use your time; don’t let it use you
  • Build friendships at work
  • Schedule open time into your work life
  • Learn to say no sometimes
  • Create an environment you enjoy working in
  • Look for the positives in your job
  • Adverse stress reaction to work with psychological, psychophysiological, and behavioral components
  • Symptoms include:
    • Diminished sense of humor
    • Skipping rest and meals
    • Increased overtime/no vacation
    • Increased physical complaints
    • Social withdrawal
    • Changed job performance
    • Self-medication
    • Internal changes
five stages of burnout
Five Stages of Burnout
  • Stage 1: The honeymoon
  • Stage 2: Fuel shortage
  • Stage 3: Chronic symptoms
  • Stage 4: Crisis
  • Stage 5: Hitting the wall
how to combat burnout
How to Combat Burnout
  • Identify the value and meaning of your job
  • List all activities you like and rank them in order of importance
  • Create a support group
  • Start a physical self-care program
  • Start a psychological self-care program
  • Do something silly every day
women and work characteristics
Women and Work Characteristics
  • Women are clearly disadvantaged in the world of work:
    • They make less money than their male counterparts
    • Women are subjected to more sexual harassment
    • Minority women earn less than non-minority women
    • Women tend to be primary caretakers of children
sexual harassment at work
Sexual Harassment at Work
  • Unwelcome sexually-related actions that interfere with work performance
  • The Equal Employment Opportunities Commission defines sexual harassment as sexual advances or conduct that:
    • Makes submission to the conduct a term of employment
    • Makes submission to the conduct a basis for employment decisions
    • Interferes with the individual’s work performance or creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive environment
working in the home
Working in the Home
  • Homemakers experience denigration of their role
  • Homemakers are at risk for all of the same occupational stressors:
    • Role overload
    • Role insufficiency
    • Role conflict
    • Role ambiguity
  • Empty-nest syndrome is a potent stressor
  • Life-situation interventions
  • Perception interventions
  • Emotional arousal interventions
  • Physiological arousal interventions