Nisha Yadav, U.V. Kiran
Occupational stress is stress involving work. Occupational related stress is the response people may have when presented with work demands and pressures that are not matched to their knowledge and abilities and which challenge their ability to cope. Occupational stress results from the complex interactions between large systems of interrelated variables. Occupational stress contributes not only to life stresses, but has an impact on health among security guards. Occupational stress among security guards was assessed in the present study. Occupational stress of security guards has a strong impact on the physical health and their performance at job. Hence the present study focuses on occupational stress among security guards. The study was carried out in Lucknow on the male and female security guards using multistage sampling technique. A total sample of 180 security guards was selected from three areas- Banks, academic institutions and residential security. Modified version of occupational stress scale developed by Srivastava A.K. (1976) was used. From the findings of the study, it can be concluded that the security guards profession is very difficult. Security guards suffer from high stress and face problem and dissatisfied with their job and salary. Security guards continuously work for long hours and they are not satisfied with their salary.
Keywords: Occupational stress, Security guards, Physical and Psychological health
Occupational stress relates to the experience of stress in one’s place of work, occupation or employment. Occupational stress is defined as adaptive response to an external situation that results in physical, psychological and or behavioral deviations for organizational participants. Occupational stress is a state of tension that is created when a person responds to the demands and pressures that come from work, family and other external sources, as well as those that are internally generated from self imposed demands, obligations and self criticism. The terms work stress, job stress, or occupational stress is used interchangeably (Dollard 2003). Employers and governments have had increasing concern about occupational stress for over twenty years (Le Fevre, et al. 2003). In the past decade, effects of economic globalization and rapid technological changes have resulted in increased workloads and a faster pace in the work place (Dollard 2003).
Stress has been defined in different ways over the years. Originally, it was conceived as pressure from the environment, then as strain within the person. The generally accepted definition today is one of the interactions between the situation and the individual. It is the psychological and physical state that results when the resources of the individual are not sufficient to cope with the demands and pressures of the situation. Thus, stress is more likely in some situations than others and in some individuals than others (Michie, 2002).
According to Selye H (2006), stress is defined as a non-specific response of the body to any demand, positive or negative, made upon it. Thus, occupational stress is any discomfort which is felt and perceived at a personal level and triggered by instances, events or situations that are too intense and frequent in nature so as to exceed a person’s coping capabilities and resources to handle them adequately (Malta, 2004).
Stress related with a job or occupation is called occupational stress. Stress is a universal phenomenon, excess of which results in intense and distressing experience. Occupational stress refers to a situation where occupation related factors interact with employee to change i.e. disrupts or enhance his / her psychological and or physiological conditions such that the person is forced to deviate from normal functioning. Occupational stress is generally defined in terms of relationship between a person and his environment. There is potential for stress when an environmental situation is perceived as presenting demand which threatens to exceed the person’s capabilities and resources for meeting it. Every occupation has some stress, which may differ in its degree (Bhatt, 2013).
Security guards give service within several ranges of tasks. In the line of duty in various work settings, guards may be expected to maintain order and to detain criminal violators while appointed to a single property or placed on patrol for various sites or territories. Concisely, a security guard may encounter a variety of situations, locations, and behaviors. With such a heavy responsibility and important duties, it is very important to make sure that the security guards are mentally and behaviorally healthy and safe. Security guard is one of the fastest growing occupations worldwide. Security guard is defined as a privately employed individual, usually uniformed, who is personally hired or paid to protect a defined area of property and people via various direct or indirect methods. The range of duties includes monitoring, guiding, maintaining, and most importantly, preventing crimes.
Security guard is one of the occupations with high risk to get involved in incidents at work such as violence and crime. The needs for public interaction when working, as well as working pattern such as shift working hour and solitary work, contribute to increased risk of incident at work. In addition, presence of other risk factors may elicit the probability for incidents to occur.
Occupational stress is considered a challenge for the employers and because high level of stress results in low productivity, and other employee problems it is necessary that managers find a way of addressing the issue of occupational stress (Elovainio et al, 2002).
RATIONALE OF THE STUDY
The study mainly intends to measure the depth of the amount of occupational stress and burnout one may experience on the other side. The concern for employee’s wellness in the workplace has extended with the focus shifting from employees with challenges to focusing to every employee. Research has been conducted on occupational challenges such as stress.
Security guards working in an organization face physical as well as psychological stress due to the tedious work involved in their job. Occupational stress results from the interaction of the worker and the conditions of work. Views differ on the importance of workers characteristics versus working conditions as the primary cause of occupational stress. The differing viewpoints suggest different ways to prevent stress at work. Difference in individual characteristics such as personality and coping skills can be very important in predicting whether certain job conditions will result in stress. In other words, what is stressful for one person may not be a problem for someone else. This view point underlines prevention strategies that focus on workers and ways to help them cope with demanding job conditions. Hence the present study was undertaken to assess impact of various parameters on the occupational stress among security guards working in various sectors and formulate a regression model.
Multi stage random sampling technique was followed in the present study. The present study was conducted in different areas of Lucknow city. The independent variables considered for the study were various sectors, gender, age, work experience. With the aid of modified version of occupational stress scale developed by Srivastava A.K. (1976) was used. A total of 180 security guards were selected from Lucknow district. Information was collected using interview method. The data was coded, tabulated and analyzed using the PAS software. Regression analysis was used for the statistical analysis of the data.
RESULTS AND DISCUSSION
Linear regression is a statistical procedure for predicting the value of a dependent variable from an independent variable when the relationship between the variables can be described with a linear model. Occupational stress is phenomenon tested across male and female security guards to look into variation in the level of stress.
The following independent categorical variables were considered in the analysis: working institutions, gender, age (<45- >60) and work experience (<1- >5) years. Linear regression analysis with occupational stress as the dependent variable was used to examine the impact of each factor on occupational stress.
CONCEPTUAL MODEL OF THE STUDY
The research questions were addressed using linear regression model. The study variables were regression on occupational stress through entering demographic variable (working institutions, age, gender, work experience). This equation model was reported using occupational stress as the dependent variable.
Regression analysis was done using enter method all independent variable were entered at a time.
From the model it is elear that among all the variables, gender is the most influencing variable, where in females security guards were found to have high occupational stress in comparison to male security guards. Major impact on the dependent variable showing a β value of .406 at p= .000.
The statistical significance of the variable age when introduced into the analysis was found to be a fair predictor of how this affected stress in the large population of security guards.
From the model it is elear that among all the variables, working institutions influence are found to have average impact on occupational stress in comparison to age and work experience.
From the model it is also elear that among all the variables, work experience is negatively influencing with increase in work experience, the occupational stress was found to be lowered.
For the purpose to check impact on dependent and independent variables of the study, regression analysis was carried out. The value of R Square was found to be 635a showing that gender variables have strong (40.6%) effect on occupational stress. The table value of coefficients came up as positive indicating that intrinsic and extrinsic variables have positive effect on occupational stress. The value of intrinsic factors was higher (66.98) than the extrinsic factors (16.3%) which means that intrinsic factors have greater influence on occupational stress compared to extrinsic factors.
The findings on the effects of working facilities stress factors on the performance of employees in public universities in Kenya confirm that there is a statistically significant influence of workplace facilities on employee performance. This implies that a positive increase in the conditions of workplace facilities leads to an increase in employee performance. These results supports those of Botha & Pienaar (2006) who reported that income, heavy workload, lack of workspace, lack of resources (including equipment and material to do tasks), absence of proper company procedures, insufficient time to perform duties, meeting deadlines imposed by others, have been introduced as stressors related to work environment.
Occupational stress results from the complex interactions between large systems of interrelated variables. A study conducted on “Occupational stress among bank employees” revealed that private bank employees had high occupational stress due to role ambiguity, role conflict, under participation, powerlessness, low status, strenuous working condition than nationalized bank employees. Thus, the nature of job and working conditions are responsible for level of stress that
employees faced in various sectors. (Niharika & Kiran, 2014)
Occupational stress results from the complex interactions between large system of interrelated variables. A study conducted on “Occupational stress among security guards” revealed that there was highly significant difference between male and female security guards. Female security guards had more difficulty in managing their work and family as compared to male security guards. It was also observed that female security guards have stressful occupation experience because they had to make balance between their family and occupation. In the other case, male security guards have less stressful experience because they were only focused on the occupation. The result obtained on the occupational stress among male and female security guards. Female security guards had to face a lot of problem like difficulty on their work, nose irritation, mosquitoes disturb at night, night shift, less salary, guarding large area, summer and rainy season not comfortable and risky job. Due to occupational stress female security guards were highly affected by occupational stress. (Yadav & Kiran, 2015)
The study indicates a positive relationship as a predominant model of impact on occupational stress among security guards, working in various sectors. Some researchers regarded occupational stress as extra-work variable and hence it should be excluded when examining the impact of some variables on occupational stress. In an age of highly dynamic and competitive world, security guards are exposed to all kinds of stressors that can affect them on all realms of life. The growing importance of interventional strategies is felt more at organizational level. Highly significant negative relationship also is observed between independent variables and occupational stress. If organization encourages the implementation of programs and friendly policies they will be successful in reducing the turnover because work life balance practices can be helpful in attracting new security guards.
The results of occupational stress indicate negative impact on people, society and organizations. High levels of stress will cause negative effect on employees physical and mental well being ultimately shows effect on their performance. Most security guards were not satisfied with their occupation because they considered it too difficult relative to the low salary they receive for it. Female security guards have high occupational stress than male security guards as they have to face problems, psychological in nature along with physical problems.
- H, Caparini.M, and Cole.E (2007), “Regulating private security companies in Europe: Status and prospects,” Policy Paper no.20, Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces.
- Bhatt, R. J. (1998), “A Case study of job satisfaction among employees of leading Nationalized banks of Gujarat state.”
- Botha C & Pienaar J., (2006), “South African correctional official occupational stress: the role of psychological strengths” Journal of Criminal Justice. 34(1): 73-84.
- Dollard, M.F., (2003), Introduction: Context theories and intervention. In M.F. Dollard, A.H. Winefield, & H.R. Winefield (Eds.), “Occupational stress in the service professions”. New York: Taylor & Francis.
- Elovainio et al (2002), “Worksite Stress Management Interventions: Their Effectiveness and Conceptualisation” Journal of Managerial Psychology Volume: 2 Issue: 1
- Grosswald B, (2004), “The effects of shift work on family satisfaction,” Fam. Soc., vol. 85, pp. 413-423.
- Joh E.E, (2004), “The paradox of private policing,” J. Crim. Law Crim., vol. 95, pp. 49-131
- M, Stenning. M, and Wood. J (2004), “Policing communal spaces: A reconfiguration of the ‘Mass Private Property’ hypothesis,” Brit. J. Criminol., vol. 44, pp. 562-581.
- Le Fevre, M., Matheny, J., & Kolt, G. S., (2003), “Eustress, distress, and interpretation in
Occupational stress” Journal of Managerial Psychology, Volume 18, Pp. 726-744.
- T, Selin.R, Summala.H, and Virtanen.M (2011), “Work-related violence against security guards – Who is most at risk?” Ind. Health, vol. 49, pp. 143-150.
- Mead R. (2000), What is Stress? Roger Mead Associates, Stress Management, Coaching and Training for Individuals and Groups.
- V.Di, Hoel.D, and Cooper.C.L (2003), “Preventing violence and harassment in the workplace,” Dublin, Ireland: European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions.
- Malta (2004), “Stress at Work. A Concept in Stress”. Human Factors Limited. Business Psychology and Strategy Development.
- Michie S (2002), “Causes and management of stress at work”. Occup Environ Med; 59: 67–72.
- Niharika, Kiran UV (2014), “Occupational Stress among bank employees”. European Academic Research 2. 4 :5404-5411
- T, Earle.K, and Sarre.R (2009), “Private security in Australia: Trends and key characteristics,” Trends & Issues in Crime & Criminal Justice, no. 374. Canberra, Australia: Australian Institute of Criminology.
- Selye H (2006), “The Stress of life”. New York: McGraw-Hill.
- N, Kiran UV (2015), “Occupational stress among security guards”. Journal for studies in management and planning 01.07: 2395-0463