A New study finds that deadlines are the biggest contributor to stress in the workplace

by Michael Haberman on February 21, 2017 · 2 comments

That quizzical look

A recent survey by the job search website CareerCast revealed that of the eleven things that cause stress in the workplace, deadlines are the biggest contributor to the stress that employees experience. According to the report “Employees were asked what was the biggest contributing factor to their stress and the survey found that the most common cause was deadlines (30%).” I looked at that with the quizzical look that your dog gives you when they don’t understand you. I thought how can you have a job, any job, that doesn’t have deadlines?

Is this generational?

Perhaps this number is the result of the way the Millennial generation has been reared. No pressure, participation trophies, and hence no deadlines? This has got to actually mean unreasonable deadlines. That will definitely stress you out. But in reading what I was sent I didn’t get the impression they were talking about unreasonable deadlines, just deadlines. You can read the results yourself by clicking here.

The next most stressful event was “Life of Another at Risk” stress factor coming in second at 17%. That is less stressful than just having a deadline???

What is your take on this survey?

Of a 1000 survey takers this is how their results shook out.

Top Causes of Stress:

  1. Deadlines (30%)
  2. Life of Another at Risk (17%)
  3. Competitiveness (10%)
  4. Physical Demands (8%)
  5. Working in the Public Eye (8%)
  6. Growth Potential (7%)
  7. Life at Risk (7%)
  8. Hazards Encountered (5%)
  9. Meeting the Public (4%)
  10. Travel (3%)
  11. Environmental Conditions (2%)

Many of these are valid causes of stress, but what job does not have a deadline?

I really would like to have your feedback on my interpretation of this study. Am I off base?

Please make a remark below.

 

Please note: I am not belittling CareerCast with my observation. A result is a result.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Paul February 21, 2017 at 4:04 pm

Mike,

I agree with you on this and have observed that even the medical field has discovered that stress is a big component of disease or at least the bodies systems to ward off diseases.

I also believe that one of the greatest cause of stress these days which was not on the list is the news. While the news is supposed to be the reporting of local and world events as they happen it has taken on a form beyond what actually may have happened to a projection of what may happen. We used to call that bias but we really do not hear that word used much even though it is worse than ever.

Being a little older I recall days when the news was less bias presenting all sides of the story and not revealing so many details leaving strong impressions that linger. This combined with a rapid fire bombardment every day trying to jam so much into a news cast with so many other news outlets then adding to it results in more fear and even panic than the initial news itself. Fear is a fruit of stress and actually steers our decision making process which we know is very dangerous.

Case in point is that we now have people taking to the streets protesting as a result of a fear of things that for the most part have not even actually happened. Years before people took to the streets for things like the social inequality, the right to vote or even the Viet Nam war but more due to actual failures in our culture. Now we see an accumulation of sound bites with a strong bias being forecast into an end result stirring up anger and even resulting in violence in the streets.

Another factor is due to technology we now have cameras everywhere and combined with live streaming to social media we have even more news outlets. The term “fake news” is now another problem where at a pizza business someone took it serious enough to come out with a rifle to try to take matters into their own hands. I’d say that person was really stressed by what they heard even though it wasn’t even real.

So is this an indicator of how stressed people are these days or is how we report what is happening actually leading to more stress that stresses people out? While that is debatable it would be really good if the “real news” outlets would require that reporters come from both sides of a story and maybe show less on camera of the more gory details.

Reply

Michael Haberman March 1, 2017 at 2:18 pm

Paul:
Thanks for the comment. Stress is also relative to your particular circumstances. One person’s stress could be someone else’s challenge. Technology has contributed significantly, with the speed of transmission. Crises have a chance to pass before we get stressed out about them.

Thanks again for the comment.

Reply

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