Just 1% ‘never’ experience work-related stress, finds survey

Just 1% of employees claim never to experience work-related stress, a survey conducted for Stress Awareness Month this month (April) has found.

Of the 1,815 people polled by employee experience platform Perkbox, more than three-quarters (79%) said they commonly experience work-related stress, while about a fifth (17%) said they rarely do.

As a result of workplace stressors, more than half (55%) said they experienced feelings of anxiety, while 43% lost sleep. Almost a third (32%) turned to stimulants such as nicotine, alcohol and caffeine in order to cope, while the same proportion found themselves comfort eating.

Work-related stress was identified as the most common form of stress in the UK, followed by stress brought on by financial issues (60%), family (48%), health (45%) and relationships (35%).

Employees were reluctant to approach their employer about the pressure they faced, with fewer than one in five stating that they would speak to a manager. Sixteen per cent said they would be prepared to leave a company that was making them feel stressed.

However, the majority of employees felt their organisation had mechanisms in place to support stressed staff. Only 19% said their organisation had no measures in place.

The most popular stress-reducing policies identified by survey respondents included flexible working hours (offered by 37% of workplaces), regular one-to-ones between employees and managers (37%), and counselling services (33%).

Perkbox’s 2020 UK workplace stress survey report concluded: “There’s still a way to go for UK business to find ways of working and measures which will limit the damage on their company cultures, staff morale and performance. The silver lining here is that many are making positive changes within their businesses to help employees manage stress levels.

“With those experiencing workplace stress being on the rise, it reinforces the importance of businesses to look for ways to support and provide the tools for their employees to tackle mental health and stress in their organisation.

“Employers need to identify the causes of stress in their workplace and introduce strategies to ensure happier and healthier employees. The statistics show that not only will this improve employee’s wellbeing, but also improve company performance.”

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