Stress management amongst bank executives : a case study.
This study was conducted within the Retail Credit Evaluation and Assessment (RCEA) units at one of the big four banks within South Africa. The aim of this study was to assess stress amongst employees that were employed within the credit evaluation and assessment unit of a financial institution and then evaluate the factors that contributed to these employees stress levels with an option of implementing stress management programmes and employee assistance programmes within the organisation. The objectives of this study was to determine the overall stress levels of employees working within this environment based on demographics, length of service and qualification levels. The questionnaire was designed around obtaining data on the objectives of the study and respondents were requested to give information on the stress levels, their qualification levels, and length of service, race and gender. Respondents were also requested to rate the items that they believed contributed to their stress levels using a five point Likert-scale measurement tool. The medical information of respondents was assessed and respondents were to identify the medical conditions that they suffered from and if it was stress related. Employees were also asked about whether they would be willing to participate in stress management programmes and interventions to assist in managing their stress levels. The RCEA environment is a relatively small business unit within the chosen bank and is based across the major cities of South Africa. The decision was taken to obtain information from as many staff as possible through a web based survey using the on-line software programme QuestionPro, in order for the survey to be accessible to all respondents. The results of the survey found that 47.3% of respondents identified their current stress levels as very high to high and a further 44.7% of respondents experienced moderate stress levels as opposed to 7.9% of respondents who rated their stress levels as low and very low. A salient feature of this study is that the majority of respondents were prepared to accept assistance in managing their stress levels in that 65.5% of respondents revealed that they would participate in a healthy lifestyle programme and that 67.6% of respondents would attend monthly physical checks by medical practioners if provided by the employer. The study can benefit the organization in identifying the factors that cause employees to experience stress and then develop and implement strategies to manage stress levels of employees. A healthy workforce is a more productive workforce.