1/ Definition of â€œStressâ€? :
Stress is an individualâ€™s adaptive response to a situation that is perceived as challenging or threatening to the personâ€™s wellbeing. (1)
There are two kinds of stress dimensions which are psychological and physiological one. In psychological aspect, people perceive a situation and interpret it as challenging or threatening or both and then this cognitive appraisal leads to physiological responses.
Distress: the degree of physiological, psychological and behavioural deviation from healthy functioning. (2)
General adaptation syndrome: a model of the stress experience, consisting of three stages : alarm reaction, resistance and exhaustion which helps people to cope with environmental demands by providing an automatic defence system.
â€¢ Alarm reaction : biochemical reactions occuring leads to physiological responses of the human body in order to alert the person to the threatening or challenging environment conditions.
â€¢ Resistance : the body resists the environment demands in an above normal state level due to various biochemical, psycological and behavioural mechanisms activated at previous stage.
â€¢ Exhaustion : excess a limited resistance capacity of a person leads to exhaustion stage due to body operating overload on previous stage.
2/ Stressors: the causes of stress, including any environmental conditions that place a physical or emotional demand on a person. (3)
â€¢ Physical environment stressor: found in physical working environment such as : excessive noise, poor lighting, safety hazardsâ€¦
â€¢ Role-related stressor: includes conditions where employees have difficulty understanding, reconciling or performing the various roles in their lives. (4)
o Role conflict : occurs when people face competing demands.
o Role ambiguity : uncertainty about job duties, performance expectation, level of authority â€¦
o Workload : receiving too little work or having tasks that do not sufficiently use employeeâ€™s ability.
o Task control : lack control over how and when performing tasks and the pace of work activity.
â€¢ Interpersonal stressors: includes ineffective supervision, office politics and other conflicts when working with people. (5)
o Workplace violence: employees who experience violence usually have symptoms of severe distress after the traumatic event.
o Workplace bullying: offensive, intimidating or humiliating behaviour that degrades, ridicules or insults another person at work. How to prevent ? Firstly, set expectations regarding acceptable workplace behaviour. Secondly, base on past behaviour/incident. Lastly, companies should have a grievance, mediation...