Occupational Stress: A Literature Review

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12. 2 Occupational Stress (OS)
The prevalence of occupational stressors is widely acknowledged in service sector especially in hospitality industry (Kim et al., 2007; Wildes, 2007). Long and anti social working hours, lack of job control, and a high and conflicting work demands are but a few of the frequently cited causes (stressors) of occupational stress (Faulkner and Patiar, 1997). A historically high employee turnover rate (Wildes, 2007) also means that employees are often over stretched in understaffed situations (Rowley and Purcell, 2001), thereby amplifying stress levels (Ross, 1997). Left unchecked, prolonged stress has been found to be detrimental to both the well-being of employees and organization (De Croon et al., 2004). These
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Addressing the above gaps therefore particularly important given that service sector is typically associated with a high level of service failure (Miller et al., 2000; Yoo et al., 2006), frequent exposure to customer complaints (Wildes, 2007), limited job control and low decision latitude unaccounted extra work load and other work characteristics, which make these employees highly susceptible to elevated levels of occupational stress leading to cultural issues. Many OS models have been used to demonstrate that stressors at work load to negative physical, psychological and behavioural changes (Kahn and Byosiere, 1992). According to the transactional model of stress (Lazarus and Folkman, 1984), the process of stress depends on the person’s appraisal of the situation. Therefore, individual differences variables that might relate to perceptions should be given more attention in occupational stress…show more content…
This is referred to as incompatible roles. For e.g. an offensive policeman is taught that he must control criminals and mob violence by use of his physical strength and domineering behaviour. At home, however, the same methods would be unacceptable in controlling his children. Occurrence of cultural problems may have detrimental consequences to employees, families and work organizations. Conflict between the roles assigned to work and family may be an important stressor that can influence outcomes in the life domain (Frone, 2003) as well as work domain. Parasuraman et al. (1992) showed a positive association between overall life stress and work family issues. For organizations and economy as a whole stress has a tremendous financial cost. The American stress institute estimates 300 billion dollar per year is lost by business in U.S due to stress. Stress results in lower productivity, higher absenteeism, employer turnover, alcoholism, medical costs (Murphy and Zagorski, 2006). Further evidence suggests employees under high stress can cost organizations money because of higher accident levels, lost time, and reduced productivity (Thomas and Ganster, 1995). Greenhaus et al. (2001) showed stress to be related to an employee’s turnover intention.

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