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55 Troubling Workplace Stress Statistics for 2021

Troubling Workplace Stress Statistics

Stress can play a major toll on human beings and their mental and physical well-being. Stress can come from many sources, and one of the largest stressors is the workplace. For employees, workplace stress affects their happiness, productivity, relationships and tenure at a company. For employers, workplace stress can cause employee turnover, unhappiness, low productivty and more. 

SIGNS OF A STRESSFUL WORK ENVIRONMENT

  • Some signs that the whole organization has a stressful environment are high employee turnover, increased absenteeism, long-hours working culture, low productivity and efficiency (Stress.org) 
  • Some of the negative effects stress has on employees are job performance, lower engagement with their work, tense communication with coworkers (CDC, 2018) 
  • 41% of workers said stress made them less productive, 33% said it made them less engaged, 15% admitted to looking for a new job because of stress (Coloniallife, 2019) 
  • 91% of respondents said that feeling overwhelmingly stressed negatively affects the quality of their work (Deloitte) 
  • More than half of respondents said they often have 12-hour work days, and an equal amount frequently skip lunch because of job stress and demands (WM)

HOW WORK STRESS AFFECTS PERSONAL LIFE

  • 7 in 10 adults reported that workplace stress affects their personal relationships (ADAA) 
  • 50% of workers bring their work home, causing interference in their personal and work life (HBR, 2016) 
  • When job satisfaction declines so does marital satisfaction, proving a strong work-family stress spillover (ScienceDirect, 2017) 
  • One-third of children believe their parent has been always stressed out during this last month (APA, 2010) 
  • Nearly half of children reported feeling sad or worried when their parent is stressed out (APA, 2010) 
  • More than 20% of workers spend more than 5 hours daily thinking about their stressors (Coloniallife, 2019) 
  • 25% said their job is number one stressor in their lives (Stress.org) 

WORKPLACE STRESS FACTORS

  • Most common causes of workplace stress are workload (44%), lack of support (14%), changes at work (8%) (HSE, 2019) 
  • Six in 10 adults listed work and money as a significant source of stress (APA, 2019) 
  • One in three workers say their boss thinks work should be a top priority and come before family life (Relate, 2016) 
  • 58% of employees have left a job, or would consider leaving because of negative office politics (Randstad, 2018) 
  • A third of employees say their employer thinks the ideal employee would be available 24-hours a day (Relate, 2016) 
  • Some other common stress factors are low salaries, lack of opportunity for growth, unrealistic job expectations, and long hours (SHRM, 2020) 

OVERALL WORKPLACE STRESS TRENDS

  • 55% of Americans reported feeling stress during each day (Gallup, 2019) 
  • 40% of workers reported their job was extremely stressful (Stress.org) 
  • 80% of workers feel stress on the job, nearly half said they need help in learning how to manage stress (The Marlin Company, 2001) 
  • 38% of respondents said they feel more pressure at work currently than they were a year ago (The Marlin Company, 2001) 
  • Millennials and Gen Z report highest levels of stress and have the most trouble coping with stress (APA, 2014) 
  • Seven in 10 Americans in the poorest 20% of the population said they experienced stress daily, compared to four in 10 Americans in the richest 20% of the population (Gallup, 2019) 
  • Work was the third most common source of stress for 61% of respondents, with money and the future of our nation at the top (APA, 2017) 
  • 51% of workers in low-paying jobs reported being stressed, and 41% of average and high-paying jobs reported feeling the negative effects of stress (SHRM, 2020)

COST OF WORKPLACE STRESS

  • Effective stress management reduces sickness absence costs by up to 20% (StressManagementSociety, 2016) 
  • Stressed workers incur healthcare costs twice as high than other employees (HealthAdvocate, 2009) 
  • The consequences of stress-related illnesses cost businesses an estimated $200 to $300 billion a year in lost productivity (HealthAdvocate, 2018) 
  • Absenteeism in the workplace due to depression costs the economy around $23.3 billion per year (APA, 2015) 
  • 12.8 million working days are lost in a year due to work-related stress, depression, or anxiety (HSE, 2019) 
  • 12% of respondents have called in sick because of job stress (WM) 
  • Workplace stress leads to a 50% increase in voluntary turnover (HBR, 2015) 

HEALTH EFFECTS of stress

  • Workplace stress is linked to 70% of visits to the doctor and for 85% of serious illnesses (StressManagementSociety, 2016) 
  • 35% feel their workplace is negatively affecting their physical and emotional well-being (The Marlin Company, 2001) 
  • Women are more likely than men to experience physical symptoms of stress and are also more likely to cope with stress with unhealthy behaviors (HealthAdvocate, 2009) 
  • To cope with stress many employees pick up unhealthy habits such as alcohol, prescription pain medication and other substances (NCBI, 2017)
  • Two-fifths of adults reported overeating due to stress, and a third reported skipping a meal because of stress in the last month (APA, 2010) 
  • 62% of workers said they end the day with neck pain, 44% reported stressed out eyes and 34% reported difficulty in sleeping because of stress (WM) 
  • Poor leadership and stress-producing employers have been linked to heart disease in employees (Karolinska Institutet, 2009) 
  • The most common physical symptoms of stress are irritability (45%), fatigue (41%), and lack of energy or motivation (38%) (APA, 2010) 
  • Stress-related distraction or sleepiness account for 60-80% of accidents on the job (HealthAdvocate, 2009) 

EFFECTIVE STRESS MANAGEMENT AND PREVENTION

  • The most-reported stress management techniques are listening to music, exercising, watching tv, and going online (APA, 2014) 
  • 64% of employees who reported feeling passionate about their work also reported feeling stressed, therefore disproving the myth that passion does not mean no stress (Deloitte) 
  • One in five Americans (20%) report they never engage in an activity to help relieve or manage their stress (APA, 2014) 
  • 64% of employees reported their organization offered support related to job stress (PeopleManagement, 2019) 
  • Actions managers can take to effectively manage stress: offer free or subsidized screenings for depression, provide lifestyle coaching, raise awareness about mental health, create dedicated and quiet places for meditation and practicing mindfulness, host seminars for better stress management, join a workplace wellness program (CDC, 2018) 
  • Some strategies for employers to lower workplace stress are: flexible working hours, work from home, longer lunch hours, job sharing, etc. (HealthAdvocate, 2009) 

Work stress is a concern for both employees and employers because, as the statistics above show, there is a clear link between employee wellbeing and the performance of a company.