Stiff upper lip makes it hard for managers to cope with work stress

The great British fear of revealing emotions is proving a major hurdle in tackling workplace stress, a survey has suggested.

According to HR consultancy Right Corecare, managers are often afraid to talk about stress with their employees, either for fear of appearing weak or because they feel uncomfortable discussing something “emotional”.

The study of 280 HR professionals showed that there are still large gaps in how companies feel they should manage stress and what they are doing on the ground.

Most employers believe they are not doing a good job of managing workplace stress, it found, and three out of five believe they could do better.

Most believed managers and employees were uncomfortable even talking about stress. And most were concerned that managers lack the skills to respond appropriately to stress, either in themselves or among team members.

Anna Shuttleworth, Corecare director of training, said: “Organisations often appear to be paralysed by fear and a lack of confidence in their own abilities when it comes to tackling the issues.”

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