There is a warning of the World Health Organization pointing to stress as “a global epidemic with high cost and main cause of sick leave”:
- Psychological health is responsible for 11% resource consumption.
- 80% of workers have or have had symptoms of stress (Gallup poll).
Spain is not immune to this “disease” and costs for treatment of depression and stress rise to no less than 745 million euros annually.
53.5% are direct costs (pharmacological treatments, income), the remaining 65% is due to indirect costs (lost productivity or temporary inability to work).
Stress is the second most common health problem in the workplace and affects 22% of workers in the EU27. A conservative estimate of the costs caused by work-related stress points to about 20 000 million euros annually. Even more staggering is the resulting human suffering for many millions of workers in Europe.
Healthy companies have the ability to self-examination and renewal in terms of staffing, structure, technology and tasks, while all involved work harmoniously. Otherwise, they run the risk of tensions that will impact negatively on the results that both employers and workers value.
Indirect costs the following phenomena and their effects are:
- loss of vitality, response and recovery;
- low morale, low motivation and high dissatisfaction;
- continuity solutions in communication, with a decrease in frequency and increased distortions;
- errors in decision-making, poor capacity of prosecution;
- worse quality of labor relations with distrust, disrespect and animosity;
- aggression and violence, both verbal and physical
- in opportunity costs, as stressed workers do not take advantage of opportunities as they are using the power they have in coping or survival
(Preventive Stress Management in Organizations. Washington, D.C.: American Psychological Association, 1997)