Workers don’t take stress out on each other

Associated Press

Office workers might have a bigger workload as hours drop and payrolls shrink, but they’re not taking it out on each other or their employers, one survey said.

"If anything, the relationships in the workplace are stronger," said Reesa Staten, director of workplace research at Robert Half International Inc., whose Accountemps division developed the survey.

Eighty-seven percent of respondents said their relationship with their supervisor was good or very good this April, matching results from the survey done in 2005.

Meanwhile, 95 percent of the adult office workers polled said their relationships with co-workers were good or very good, slightly more than survey takers said four years ago.


"The workplace is sometimes the butt of a lot of jokes, but most people like who they work with and, for the most part, like who they work for," said Staten. It’s "not too surprising given you spend most of your waking hours at the office."

Common-sense activities help maintain good relationships during stressful times, just as they do in more calm periods, she said.

  • Don’t let the threat of downsizing make you selfish. Share credit for group tasks and make sure accolades go to those who deserve them.
  • Keeping deadlines and commitments is even more important now that companies are doing more with fewer resources.
  • Volunteer, collaborate, be flexible. Take on jobs that aren’t specifically spelled out in your job responsibilities.
  • Try to get to know colleagues on a personal level.
  • Have empathy, especially as a manager or employer. Since there’s not a lot of money for bonuses and raises, plan group activities or volunteer work that helps drive team bonding.
  • Encourage vacation time for recharging.

The Robert Half poll randomly surveyed 457 adult office workers in April.

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