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Most Employees Say Their Workplace Is Stressful

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Most Employees Say Their Workplace Is Stressful

PHILADELPHIA – April 30, 2012 – Two-out-of-three people say the stress level in their workplace is high, according to a survey of more than 450 North American employees by Right Management, the talent and career management experts within ManpowerGroup.

How would you describe the stress level in your work environment?

  •  64% High 
  •  24% Medium
  •  11% Low

“When asked, employees will usually say their job or workplace is stressful,” said Michael Haid, Senior Vice President of Talent Management for Right Management, which provides talent, career and outplacement services to Fortune 500 companies. “After all, we’re talking about work, not play, so we shouldn’t be surprised if there’s high energy or intensity on the job. In fact, one has to wonder about the 11% of workplaces that seem to have low stress.”

Nevertheless, according to Haid, the percentages suggest that workplace stress is at an unusually high level. “It would be foolhardy for management to dismiss employees’ complaints because a perception of stress impairs engagement, and that is a core issue that impacts productivity and the bottom line.”

What accounts for such a high level of workplace stress? Haid believes it is a combination of factors. “We’re into the fourth year of a volatile employment market… employee cutbacks, lean staffing, a weak job market and relentless pressure for companies to perform. This survey, as well as others we have recently conducted, leaves little doubt that people are frustrated and impatient, and this is a problem that won’t go away anytime soon.”
Haid recommended four tips for managers to help employees to manage their stress levels:

• Hold regular work review meetings to clarify priorities and deadlines.
• Be open and authentic when sharing company performance information.
• Clarify for each individual employee their role in making the organization successful.
• Foster flexible working practices to help employees to juggle work and life pressures.

“Stress can significantly impact an employee’s health and well-being,” noted Haid. “While there’s a balance in finding the right level of productive tension that drives employees to perform and excel, too much stress can cause longer term detrimental problems for both the individual and the organization.”

The survey of 453 employees from the U.S. and Canada was conducted between March 16 and April 15.

About Right Management

Right Management is the global leader in talent and career management workforce solutions. As the workforce consulting experts within ManpowerGroup, the firm designs and delivers solutions to align talent strategy with business strategy. Expertise spans Talent Assessment, Leader Development, Organizational Effectiveness, Employee Engagement, and Workforce Transition and Outplacement. With offices in over 50 countries, Right Management partners with companies of all sizes – including more than 80% of the Fortune 500 – to help grow and engage their talent, increase productivity and optimize business performance.

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Media Contact: Shari Fryer,, 970-846-6607