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Preventing Stress in Organizations: How to Develop Positive Managers by Emma Donaldson-Feilder, Rachel Lewis, Joanna Yarker

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Chapter 3

How to Manage Work-Related Stress

This chapter introduces the approaches you can take to manage work-related stress. You will find below a number of different approaches that can be adopted by the organization, the manager or the individual employee.

The line manager plays a vital role in all attempts to manage work-related stress. Without the endorsement and engagement of line managers any intervention is likely to fall short. For example, an evaluation of the risks posed to the team is unlikely to be taken seriously unless the line manager encourages it to be so; uptake for training events is likely to be low unless the line manager encourages the team to attend; and an employee is unlikely to have access to counselling unless the manager is supportive of the employee through this process.

In addition to traditional approaches to stress management, which typically place a focus on ‘stress’, our approach suggests that line-manager development should sit at the core of stress management interventions and furthermore, stress management should be a vital part of leadership development. The line manager's role in managing work-related stress is discussed in this chapter.

There are numerous ways stress can be managed in an organization and the most effective approaches will combine prevention, training and support.

  • Prevention (Primary interventions) – action is taken to identify and address stressors, thereby preventing work-related stress.
  • Training and development (Secondary ...

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