Work stress? Tell your boss what you think of them

Friday 15th January, 2010

New research suggests that being straight with your boss is good for your health, relieves stress in the workplace and also helps managers improve.

The study, which was presented to the British Psychological Society conference in Brighton, states that a workforce should be encouraged to rate the effectiveness of their line managers in order to create “happy, healthy, stress-free employees.”

The study involved 150 managers split into two groups – one received training and feedback on their management skills from 500 members of staff while the second group did not.

Results showed that managers who received the feedback were more likely to change their management style and become more effective.

According to researcher Emma Donaldson-Feilder, employees benefit when given the opportunity to let off steam.

“The consequences of stress are pervasive; those under stress may experience psychological symptoms, such as anxiety or depression, physiological symptoms, such as palpitations or raised blood pressure and/or cognitive symptoms such as reduced mental capacity,” she said.

“Stress is a significant cause of sickness absence and this puts pressure on those left behind to run the business, creating a cycle of uncomfortable pressure with costs to the individual and to the company.”

From the study, researchers are in the process of developing resources such as a questionnaire which staff can use to rate managers and learning materials for managers. The resources will be free online when available.

In the meantime, if you’re suffering with stress, take a look at our stress management section for comprehensive advice on coping and overcoming stress.


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One Response to “Work stress? Tell your boss what you think of them”

  1. Rex Says:


    What is suggested here may offer some help, however it is not sufficient. There is plenty of publicity in the form of articles, books, websites, blogs which document the fact that workplace bullying is indeed a serious problem. Various organisations and publications such as the present one offer suggestions on how to lessen or mitigate the impact of bullying; however they do not offer a satisfactory solution, let alone a means of eradicating this problem.

    What is really needed goes beyond the currently available options. New laws, new procedures and drastic changes in management attitude and accountability are needed. This requires the involvement and commitment of politicians and lawmakers. They in turn can be motivated to act by the people they represent.

    Take action against workplace bullying. Canvas your political representatives. There are petition facilities available through the internet which makes it easy. Find live petitions against workplace bullying, sign them and spread the word. If no suitable petitions can be found start your own.

    If you are a UK citizen or resident, there are presently (Feb 2010) 2 live petitions against workplace bullying. The addresses are shown below. Please sign them and SPREAD THE WORD.

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