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Conflicting perspectives on stress reduction in occupational settings: a systems approach to their resolution.

Neale MS; Singer JA; Schwartz GE; Schwartz J
Cincinnati, OH: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, 1984 Jan; :1-60
An effort was made to determine how an experimental concept such as stress became altered in the real world of special interest groups, how the definition of stress chosen influenced subsequent interventions, what corporate and union definitions for stress and strategies for stress reduction existed, relation of reduction methods to the definitions, and the effect of strategies if the problem of stress was viewed with a different basic definition. In all, 217 organizations and individuals were contacted, including 67 corporations and 53 labor unions. An initial stress management questionnaire was mailed to 63 labor and corporate representatives. A second questionnaire, focusing less on program and more on ideology, was mailed to labor representatives. Specific stressors noted by labor representatives included lack of control over the work content, lack of control over the work process and pace, unrealistic task demands, lack of understanding by supervisors and management, the inability to keep work and home life stressors from interacting negatively, and lack of predictability and security about the future of the job. Most unions had not gone beyond the day long workshops and educational material format for stress reduction. Little emphasis was placed on lifestyle reformation and health promotion programs. Corporations recognized acutely the role of individual habits and perceptions in generating stressful situations. Missing from the corporate approach was the acknowledgment that organizational or work setting constraints help to create maladaptive behaviors and cognitions.
NIOSH-Contract; Job-stress; Mental-stress; Physiological-response; Fatigue; Workplace-studies; Worker-health; Worker-motivation; Attitude; Behavior; Psychological-factors; Sociological-factors
Publication Date
Document Type
Final Contract Report
Funding Type
Purchase Order; Contract
Fiscal Year
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Identifying No.
Source Name
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Performing Organization
Yale University
Page last reviewed: October 26, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division