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News Story:

Stress at work


Stress at work Ever feel overly stressed at work?  According to eFinancialCareers latest survey, over 4 in ten (42%) UK-based finance professionals say they feel stressed at work either very or fairly often, and 6 in ten (57%) report that stress level among co-workers in their organisation has increased in the past six months.

When compared with their colleagues in France, the financial centres of Middle East, Germany and the U.S., however, UK financial services professionals are less likely to report feeling stressed "very” or "fairly” often.  Finance Professionals in France and Middle East report the highest levels of stress with 60% and 55% respectively reporting that they feel stressed either "very” or "fairly” often.  These are among the findings of the eFinancialCareers Stress Survey which polled nearly 3,400 working finance professionals in those five regions.

Underpaid and over-worked

Asked if they feel underpaid, UK respondents are most likely to say yes, with 72% in agreement against 60% in France.   Seven in 10 (71%) also find there are not enough hours in the day to do all the things that need doing, and two thirds (65%) say they have more working lunches than lunch workouts.  Meanwhile, 6 in ten (59%) check their work email on an iPhone, Blackberry or other smartphone after-hours and on holidays.  French finance professionals were the least likely to do so (46%).

Unsurprisingly, only 4 in ten UK financial services workers (37%) feel they have time for interests and hobbies outside work, while US workers by far report the most leisure time, with three quarters (75%) saying they have time to enjoy these activities.

James Bennett, Global Managing of eFinancialCareers comments: "Results from the surveys show that perception is powerful.  UK and U.S. respondents are far more likely than their colleagues elsewhere to say they feel underpaid and to bring work home. Yet these countries report the lowest stress levels.”

When asked how they relieve their stress, UK-based finance professionals put spending time with friends and family, playing sports, and listening to music in their top choices.  These coping mechanisms also feature in all other countries’ top choices, except in the U.S. where the great American pastime, watching TV, knocks ‘listening to music’ off the top.

"A certain amount of stress is natural, but the negative effects of high levels of stress on physical and mental health have been widely reported.  The fact 6 in ten (57%) finance professionals in the UK report an increase of the overall stress level in their organisation calls for an increased focus on mental wellbeing in the workplace,” concludes Bennett.