Whenever managers implement changes, they should be concerned about the stress they may be creating.


If the stress is significant enough, it may well cancel out the improvement that was anticipated from the change.


In fact, stress could result in the organization being less effective than it was before the change was attempted.




The bodily strain that an individual experiences as a result of coping wit some environmental factor is stress.


Hans Selye, an expert on this subject, said that Stress constitutes the factors affecting wear and tear on the body.


In organizations, this wear and tear is caused primarily by the body’s unconscious mobilization of energy when an individual is confronted with organizational or work demands.


Why Study Stress?

  • Stress can have damaging psychological and physiological effects on employees’ health and on their contributions to organizational effectiveness. It can cause hear disease and it can prevent employees from concentrating or making decisions.


  • Stress is a major cause of employee absenteeism and turnover. Certainly such factors severely limit the potential success of an organization.


  • A stressed employee can affect the safety of other workers or even the public.


  • Stress represents a very significant cost to organizations.





Since stress is felt by all employees in the organizations, managers must do the following:


  1. Understand how stress influences worker performance
  2. Identify where unhealthy stress exists in organizations
  3. Help Employees handle stress


Understand how Stress Influences Worker Performance:

To deal with stress among employees, managers must understand the relationship between the amount of stress felt by a worker and the impact on the worker’s performance.


Extremely high and extremely low levels of stress tend to have negative effects on production. While increasing stress tends to bolster performance up to some point, when the level of stress increases beyond that point, performance levels begin to deteriorate.


Certain amount of stress among employees is generally considered to be advantageous for the organization because it tends to increase productivity, however when the employees experience too much or too little stress, it is generally disadvantageous for the organization because it tends to decrease productivity.





Symptoms are as follows:


1.      Constant Fatigue

2.      Low Energy

3.      Moodiness

4.      Increased Aggression

5.      Excessive use of Alcohol

6.      Temper outbursts

7.      Compulsive Eating

8.      High Levels of Anxiety

9.      Chronic Worrying


A manager who observes one or more of these symptoms in employees should investigate to determine if those exhibiting the symptoms are indeed under too much stress. If so, the manager should try to help those employees handle their stress and/or should attempt to reduce stressors in the organization.


Helping Employees Handle Stress:


  • Create an organization climate that is supportive of individuals.
  • Make jobs interesting
  • Decision and operate career counselling programs