A new survey has found that almost six in 10 workers in key global economies experienced a rise in workplace stress over the last two years.
The Regus BusinessTracker asked more than 11,000 respondents from 13 countries about their experience in the workplace during tough economic times. The survey found that the most significant stress hike occurred in China with 86 percent reporting an increase in stress, while stress levels were considerably lower in Australia, with 55 percent of workers reporting that their levels of stress have grown “higher” or “much higher” over the past two years, compared with the international average of 58 percent.
The survey also confirmed that 40 percent of Australian workers are particularly stressed by the increased focus on profitability that has arisen during the global recession, along with the risk of unemployment or business failure at 36 percent.
Company size also had an influence on the level of stress increase experienced in recent years. Regus found that workers in larger Australian companies (more than 1,000 employees) have experienced a greater rise in workplace stress (72 percent) versus 48 percent of people in small firms.
According to William Willems, regional vice president, South East Asia, The Regus Group, the results have implications for Australian businesses of all sizes as they move forward during economic recovery.
“Stress in the workforce can provide companies with real problems: management and work productivity can be seriously impaired, motivation levels may be damaged, and conflict between colleagues can undermine professionalism,” he said.
“There are a number of effective ways businesses can look to lessen stress, including encouraging Australians to take their well earned leave over the Christmas break, improving workplace culture, offering flexible work hours and allowing them the flexibility to work closer to home,” he added.