Stress is a major issue for modern businesses and managers in the contemporary working environment. Not only do stress related illnesses have a cost for organisations in terms of lost working hours and productivity, but higher levels of stress have also been associated with lower level of satisfaction, poorer quality service delivery, and higher levels of turnover (George and Zakkariya, 2015). This essay will thus look to carry out a critical review of theory and research into the various options and approaches which can be used to manage employee stress and ensure it does not reach an excessive level which could harm organisational performance and outcomes.
One of the main themes in the literature is the important role that an employee’s immediate managers, and particularly line managers, can play in the management of stress. According to Donaldson-Feilder et al (2008), as line managers are responsible for organising employees and directly supervising their work, they are ideally positioned to address their psychological needs and manage work related stress. This indicates that line managers need to ensure they have developed and are able to apply the necessary skills to the management of employee stress in order to maintain levels of morale and performance