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The biggest reasons for employee stress

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Hearing employees complain about pressures in the office is common in a country like Singapore, where majority of employees have reported to lose sleep over work woes. 

But just knowing about intense workplace pressures isn’t sufficient to combat the problem. Instead, recognising signs of an overworked employee will aid in equipping organisations with a less stressful environment.

According to the 2014 Work Stress survey conducted by Everest College, 80% of the 1,004 American employees surveyed were stressed out by their job.

The survey found the biggest reason for workplace stress was low salary levels, with 13% of adults ranking low wages as the most stressful aspect of work.

The report added a stressful commute also tied in for first place in the survey, followed by an unreasonable workload (12%), annoying coworkers (10%), and a poor work-life balance (8%).

Working in a job that is not a chosen career was also an issue for 6% of those polled, and 5% of respondents cited the boss as a contributing factor to high anxiety levels at work.

“I don’t think you can ever eliminate all the factors that cause workplace anxiety, but as individuals we can definitely create a plan of action to improve our careers and change our lives,” Wendy Cullen, vice president of employer development at Everest College, said.

In addition, the report highlighted levels of income and education played a significant role in determining the top stressors.

Low pay was most often cited among those with household incomes of under US$50,000 (S$62,665) and those with lower than college educations.

However, the highest earners and those with at least college educations, were more likely to cite unreasonable workload and poor work-life balance, according to the report.

“Work occupies a large portion of our lives, so keeping workplace stress in check is an absolute necessity in maintaining overall wellness,” Cullen said.

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