Stress can be defined as a reaction that human body demands in a particular situation or in certain circumstances. In a specific term, when the reaction is caused, it makes the nervous system to produce hormones that cause fast heartbeat, short and quick breathing and tightening muscles followed by a burst of energy. Stress management is a process that is used to control a person’s stress through different approaches. Stress management is important as chronic stress can have a massive negative impact on body and mind. Over-stressing can contribute to health problems on individual such as headaches, anxiety and depression. In the long term, the following impacts can lead to serious and acute health diseases such as memory loss and heart disease. The present study discusses the concept of stress management and related concepts. This study emphasizes the impact of stress on organizational behaviour and the methods that can be adopted by the organizations to overcome the problem. The present study also discusses various the methods in details to reach the depth of the problem.
Stress is a universal experience and it grew rapidly in the workplaces which have made stress management an absolute essential for organizations to consider. The study examines the main reasons that cause stress to the employees in an organization. Employees are faced with various causes of stress in the daily life such as workload, financial issues and many more. Also, the study discusses the ways an organization can help their employees to deal with stress and do successful stress management.
The workplace is an area acting as a major source of stress. There are key factors acting as an agent of stress such as complex tasks, lack of breaks, poor physical work condition, long working hour and many more varying as per designation. The focus of the study is on the population who faces difficulty in managing stress and impacted negatively. The population son facing stress become less productive and unhappy in the workplace is the main focus of the study.
The theories of stress management are that have been used in this study are-
Role demand is another cause of stress where the employees are expected to perform certain roles as per their job profile. Job role can have significant impact on employees making them stress over their performance. Role conflict occurs making expectations of roles that can be hard to meet for the employees. Role overload is experienced by employees when they are expected to perform more within the limited time.
Interpersonal demands are the pressures that are created by other employees of the workplace. Employees can have positive and negative impact on each other. Often lack of support from colleagues is considered to impose stress on employees.
Social support help in combating stress by motivation, emotional and mental support. People having moral support find it easier to deal with stress whereas people not finding any oral support find it hard to deal with stress as the person lacks in finding emotional and moral support. The situation for the employees become harder when there are added problem in the personal and social life.
Presence of locus of control internally is an indicator of positive care. People who think of themselves as the controller of their life instead of the environment as the controller of their life tend to be more positive towards life. People lacking internal locus of control find it hard to tackle stress due to their belief that negative things are destined for them.
Self-efficiency is also considered as a major influence on people’s stress. People who possess strong self-efficiency give less negative reaction than the people having a low level of self-efficiency. Self-belief is the key factor of self-efficiency and internal locus of centre.
The consequences of stress can take various forms. Stress can manifest itself in many ways in a person involving physical, psychological and behavioral changes. The consequences are listed under the three categories.
Methods of managing stress in an organization can be challenging at the same time absolute important. The methods can be structured as per the organization’s structure however, a general methods of managing stress can be performed in two approaches: 1) Individual approaches and 2) Organizational approaches.
Individual level approach: high level of stress can have direct affect which also affected aspects related to the person such as family and organization or workplace. Therefore, to overcome the negative consequences of stress required amount of stress should be given. Methods of stress management are required for helping individual cope with the organization’s demand and expectations. The individual approaches of stress management include:
Organizational level approach: the approaches that are more pro-active in nature and try to remove the existing stressors are the organizational approaches. Also, the aim of the approach is also to prevent any sort of stress that may cause to individual job holders. The organizational approaches include:
Individual level intervention: Individual level intervention is to help employees develop the skills to cope, manage and reduce stress where organizational-level intervention makes systematic changes in the organization. It is used to change an individual’s perception and help to bring a positive perception. The primary aim of the particular approach works on building a better relationship among individuals. This process helps the individual on a personal level with a process such as mindfulness training, cognitive therapy, meditation, relaxation and so on. The reason that justifies using this method is that it is a process that prevents employees from going through stress. Employees tend to fall under stress when one is lacking self-awareness and self-control with the help of individual-level intervention help the employees control their reaction as act mindfully. The process can be divided into three part, primary, secondary and tertiary. Primary individual-level intervention mainly aims at preventing stress occurrence in an employee. Through the process of pre-employment medical examination, organizations tend to select the applicants who have the skills to manage stress and screen out the applicants who are sceptical of experiencing stress in target roles or highly stressful jobs. The secondary aim of the individual level approach is to equip the employees with relevant skills and abilities that help in managing stress and engage employees with different opportunities to reduce stress. In this process meditation, cognitive therapy, mindfulness training and similar activities are included that helps in promoting well-being. Tertiary individual-level intervention focus on the employees experiencing a high level of stress or tend to be stressful frequently are provided help. The tertiary individual-level intervention provides employee assistance programs or counselling as the stress combater.
Organizational level intervention: according to research, an organization intervention can bring changes in the aspect of the organization that might be the cause of strain. Few debates that organizational intervention produces effects that last longer than the individual interventions. Organization intervention targets directly the entire workforce, hence it has a direct implementation on health. An employee after successful individual intervention might feel the same stress if the organization does not contribute to the same problem. Although the individual-level intervention has positive effects on employees, it does not seem to last longer and diminishes with the passage of time. On the other hand, the number of stress causing people reduces through the Organizational intervention. Hence, this particular approach helps the greater number of individuals. Organizational level interventions are also proved to be more effective due to its focus on the job stressor involving the management of the organization. This includes programs directed to the specific problems causing stress on the employees. Organizational intervention works on three specific points, changing the potential of stress in an organization or reducing the number and the intensity of stressor, changing the perception of individuals in stressful situations and helping the employees cope with the stress in stressful situation.
Many organizations believe that job stress can result to severe loss in business and therefore, it is necessary to take required measures to solve the issue. Although stress is evident and can be caused by various reasons, job stress is a major concern for organizations. Reducing job stress in the employees of the organization helps in development and growth of the company. Stress can have both positive and negative impacts on employees. Regarding the maximum evidences, the negative impacts have been found more. Employees get stressed when the workload increases, when there is complication in job roles, when the expectations of the employees are not met or even when it is a target based job. To bring effective result, organizations have now began to implement stress relieve programs that would help the employees to cope with stress and to reduce stress. There are professional methods that have been used by the psychologists to help organizations. Techniques are focused on both individual and the whole organization depending on the other factor of the organization. Along with the growing technology and globalization, the business all over is expected only to grow. Therefore, it is a necessary to consider the stress management programs for the improvement of organizational behavior. Stress management trials have been implemented for evaluating the best method for stress management. Individual and organizational levels of interventions are two types of interventions with various strategies that have been working efficiently since a long time. It is possible for the organization to deal with stress and manage stress in effective ways with the help of these interventions.
To successfully analyze the efficiency of the intervention, the data must be carefully analyzed. For the individual-level intervention, a qualitative process of evaluation is considered appropriate. In this process, in-depth discussion is required where the employee can open up to the professionals conducting the intervention regarding the causes of stress. Longitudinal study can be helpful in analyzing the effectiveness of the program.
In the organizational-level intervention, a quantitative process of evaluation is considered ideal as the whole organization is included in the program. A survey method will be able to give insight regarding the impacts of the organizational- level intervention that is aimed at eliminating stress from the workforce environment.
After the program, it is essential to figure out which measure of evaluation will help understand the effectiveness of the program. There can be two type of evaluation after the programs. The process evaluation and outcome evaluation. The process evaluation will help to determine whether the program has been implemented as it was intended or not. The other evaluation type would be outcome evaluation, which will help measure the effectiveness of the program. The improvement of the target population would be measured by evaluating with the outcome objectives that the programs was designed to achieve.
According to studies, the work stress is primarily caused by the workload produced by the organization, often the organization intervention is taken as the better approach. However, undertaking the study makes it possible to conclude that approaches are not the matter of concern. The approaches may vary organization to organization. It depends on the organization’s size, field, pattern of work, working hours and workforce environment. For few organizations the individual intervention might be the suitable approach and for few organizations organizational intervention might be helpful. During this study as per the evidences, both the individual intervention and organization intervention aim to reduce work stress in their different approaches. The individual interventions help employees cope through stress through the cognitive therapy, physical therapy on personal level whereas the organization intervention helps the employees cope with stress through staff training, organization changes and more. Also, combining organizational level and individual level approaches might be necessary for few organizations as well. Therefore, understanding the causes of stress is of more important than conducting a program to cope with the stress.
Research shows there are tons of ways and methods that are presence for eliminating stress. There are holistic as well as individual approaches that are determined to diminish the problem. However, there are less or no researches that find ways to prevent the problem from occurring. It is based on the causes that are causing work related stress that needs the attention before deciding the suitable method of eliminating the problem. Also, understanding the causes helps in taking preventing measure that causes work related stress. Causes of stress could be related to relation, health or work, it is identifying the cause that would help in preventing stress from occurring in organization. The two interventions mentioned are based on in-depth studies on human behavior, one faced with such intervention can become capable of passing the experience to others employees lacking the knowledge of intervention’s benefits. It helps in understanding self therefore, a cautions measure would be understanding the core problem and working on it by own self.
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