Job Stress is quite common scenario now. Organizational stress or job stress is defined as the problem which not only affects a worker’s physical condition but also emotionally. It has been notified that 90% of such cases are formed due to imbalance in job responsibility and its outcome. The paper discusses the different condition in which organizational stress is experiences by a worker, what are its symptom and how can it be relieved. The major factors are the environmental factors and the individual factors that causes the job stress to aggravate and finally can affect the performance.
Organizational stress could be well defined as the problem which affects worker’s morale and physical health. This in turn reduces the productivity and increases the disability in working population. There are several theories that describe the organizational stress – socio-ecological approach, person-environment fit, the demand-control support model and the effort-reward imbalance perspective (Wethington 2000) Organizational stress or job stress is very common in any organization. It is the internal and external conditions that create stressful situation and the symptoms that people experience during the job hours. (Walonick 2009) Thus the organization stress could e defined as number of way
Symptoms of Stress can be well defined through three different stages through which body passes. The first stage can be called as alarm reaction where the body prepares for potential emergency through increased blood pressure and with high breathing. All bodily systems provide maximum energy for the fight. The second stage is resistance where the body builds up a tolerance to its effect. During this stage, body’s adaptive energy is being used as shield against the stressor. The third stage is the exhaustion when the body’s adaptive energy is depleted and stress manifests itself through illness, heart ailment etc. (Walonick 2009)
All human being react in the same way to environmental stressors even though each environmental factor varies from one another. Stress can be of short term or long term . Long term stress shows increased resting heart rater which has deleterious effect. Job stress often has substantial negative effect both on physical and emotional health. The symptoms would include – constant fatigue, low energy level, recurring headaches, gastrointestinal disorders, chronically bad breath dizziness, blood pressures inability to sleep, increased aggression and even excessive smoking. (Walonick 2009) All these symptoms when continued can make people more susceptible to major illness.
Causes of Organizational Stress
Stressors can be divided into two – stress caused due to individual or stress caused to environment. Internal or individual stress can be due to fears of inadequacy, guilt feeling and environment threat. Environmental stressors are external which is beyond the individual control. External stressor factor include issues of structure, management use of authority, monotony, lack of opportunity, excessive responsibility, ambiguous demands, value conflicts and unrealistic targets. (Walonick 2009)
Emotionally induced stress can be divided as follows – time stress, anticipatory stress, situation stress and encounter stress. Time stress is caused due to real or imaginary deadline, Anticipatory stress is caused on anticipated unpleasant incident, situational stress as the name suggest is caused due to unpleasant situation and encounter stress is crated by contact with other people. (Walonick 2009) There are several reasons and situation in organizational life that can make it stressful – as mentioned before problems with the physical environment, quality of work, role ambiguities, relationships with supervisors and career development stressors are the main causes of job stress (Walonick 2009)
(Chandraiah K, Agarwal S.C, Marimuthu P, Manoharan N 2003)
Yet another common cause for the job stress is the poor interpersonal relationships are also a common source of stress in organizations. There are three types of interpersonal relationships that can evoke a stress reaction: 1) too much prolonged contact with other people, 2) too much contact with people from other departments, and 3) an unfriendly or hostile organizational climate. (Walonick 2009)
Yet another stress factors can be listed as follows:-
Too much rigidity on how to perform
Cuts in employee benefits
Merger, acquisition or change of ownership
Reduced size of work force
Job satisfaction is in regard to one’s feelings or state-of-mind regarding the nature of their work. Job satisfaction can be influenced by a variety of factors, eg, the quality of one’s relationship with their supervisor, the quality of the physical environment in which they work, degree of fulfillment in their work, etc. (Mayoclinc staff 2009)
It is correct that stress mounts when work is no longer satisfying. There are many reasons on loosing the job satisfaction like bickering co-workers, conflicts with the supervisors and many more which are listed as follows:-
In appropriate pay
Lack of opportunity for growth
No say decisions
Fear of losing job
No learning outcomes from the job
(Mayoclinic staff 2009)
Job satisfaction can be attained in number of ways, the most important among them is the approach to it. Three perspectives towards the job approach is – It’s a Job, It’s a career and it’s a calling. Also it can be increased by following criteria
set new challenges
improve your job skills
mentor the co-worker
(Mayoclinic staff 2009)
Nevertheless, acceptance of the job profile and staying positive through positive thinking is capable of increasing the job satisfaction overnight. A clear model of job satisfaction can be depicted as shown below:-
Job satisfaction and employee retention is interrelated to one another. High level of absenteeism and staff turn over would affect the bottom line of the organization. Following theory can best explain what make employee satisfied and dissatisfied on the job. (Syptak , Marsland, Ulmer 1999)
In accordance to Hertzberg there are two dimensions to job satisfaction: motivation and “hygiene”. By hygiene it refers to the environmental factors like company policies, supervision, salary, interpersonal relations and working conditions. Motivators, include fulfilling individuals’ needs for meaning and personal growth. It is attained through achievement, recognition, the work itself, responsibility and advancement eliminated or streamlined, resulting in greater efficiency and satisfaction. (Syptak , Marsland, Ulmer 1999) J. Michael Syptak, MD, David W. Marsland, MD, and Deborah Ulmer, PhD
Relationship between Organizational Stress and Job Satisfaction
Different analysis gives different output on its study on the organizational stress and job satisfaction. It varies with different job profiles and types. To explain this better, impact of stress is studied on the direct care workers. The key findings of such an analysis were that 51 percent of the variance was explained from individual-level Direct Care Worker characteristics with personal and job stressors and workplace support contributing most to the outcome. (Ejaz, Noelker, Menne,Bagaka 2008)
But this is not the case with the outcomes of many research which has focused its relationship with job satisfaction. In many research correlation studies have used role ambiguity and role conflict the cause for stress. It showed that they are inversely related because the relationship between role conflict and ambiguity and organizational outcomes has been met analyzed. (Ejaz, Noelker, Menne,Bagaka 2008)
Managers need to analyze their own stress level and of their subordinates.
Balance the factors like uncertainty, pressure, responsibility, performance evaluation and role ambiguity.
Develop strategy to treat the symptom, change the person and remove the causes of the stress.
Different employee program in reducing job burn
Consideration for people in one’s leadership style
Clarifying goals and decision criteria
Reasonable working hours and mandatory vacations.
Employee beneficiary programs
Under the situation of prolonged recessionary period, new competitors or any unanticipated crises, stress reduction workshops, biofeedback, meditation, self hypnosis, social support system will help the employees to maintain the stress levels.
Clear Job requirements
Balanced life style and positive thinking is the effort that could be taken from the individual’s side to maintain
Job satisfaction and organization stress is found to be interrelated and has direct impact on the performance. Essay describes the different facts that causes the organizational stress and recommended approach to come out of it. Developing a strategy to reduce the job stress and increase job satisfaction is always helpful to the employees as it would bring good performance out of them.