Workplace stress can have a big impact on employees, often leading to higher rates of illness, absenteeism and turnover. While employers have put in place some effective well-being strategies that have made meaningful strides in reducing behavioral and biometric risks, fostering emotional well-being in general, and reducing stress in particular, remains stubbornly challenging.
Office-related stress plays a big part in a new study from WalletHub that compares stress among some of the country’s largest cities. The financial site compared 180 cities across four key dimensions using 37 different metrics: work-related stress, money-related stress, family-related stress and health and safety-related stress.
Regarding work-related stress, points were tallied based on factors including unemployment rates, average commute times and income growth rates. As for money-related stressors, median incomes and housing affordability were taken into consideration. Family-related stress was calculated using childcare costs rates and parental-leave policies while health and safety stressors were calculated using statistics on increases in annual health premiums, suicide rates and mental health.
According to WalletHub, these 10 cities are most feeling the pressure (ranked 1-180, with 1 being the highest stress level).
10. St. Louis
Work stress: 28 Financial stress: 19 Family stress: 50 Health and safety stress: 17 Total score: 53.57
9. Gulfport, Mississippi
Work stress: 67 Financial stress: 18 Family stress: 43 Health and safety stress: 3 Total score: 54.82
Work stress: 58 Financial stress: 14 Family stress: 12 Health and safety stress: 33 Total score: 55.02
7. Wilmington, Delaware
Work stress: 7 Financial stress: 30 Family stress: 33 Health and safety stress: 28 Total score: 55.25
Work stress: 21 Financial stress: 8 Family stress: 10 Health and safety stress: 48 Total score: 56.94
5. Toledo, Ohio
Work stress: 97 Financial stress: 7 Family stress: 14 Health and safety stress: 5 Total score: 57.42
4. Birmingham, Alabama
Work stress: 109 Financial stress: 5 Family stress: 3 Health and safety stress: 4 Total score: 58.03
Work stress: 30 Financial stress:2 Family stress: 6 Health and safety stress: 7 Total score: 60.81
Work stress: 1 Financial stress: 4 Family stress: 1 Health and safety stress: 45 Total score: 62.80
Work stress: 24 Financial stress: 3 Family stress: 4 Health and safety stress: 1 Total score: 63.53
Bosses should do more to make the work-from-home experiment palatable and safe for all involved by subsidizing utility bills and workspace equipment, and changing managerial habits, with more trust given to employees.