JOB STRESS AND ITS EFFECTS ON EMPLOYEES’ PERFORMANCE IN FODEC MICRO FINANCE IN DOUALA
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The general objective of the present study was to investigate the effects of job stress on employees’ performance in FODEC microfinance in Douala. Also, it intended to analyse the relationship between the factors contributing to job stress and examine its impact on job performance. The study was mainly descriptive research carried out in the form of a field survey with a limited number of company staff only.
The total population of the study is 50 (fifty). The questionnaire is the primary research instrument that was used in the study. The statistical package software, Statistical Package for Social Science (SPSS) AMOS version 24 used was used for the processing and statistical analysis of the data.
It was revealed that there is a high level of stress amongst employees of FODEC. Also, it was revealed that both the organization and employees of FODEC have developed strategies for coping with stress at work. It was concluded that both factors affect productivity negatively and hence there is a need to manage these factors so as to better the company’s productivity. Time pressure is one of the main organizational factors that hinder performance due to the fact employees reach a burnout level that they can no longer produce effectively.
Furthermore, they lack work-life balance and thus stress on how to balance the two which hinders their performance in a huge percentage. Physical Demand of the Job also affects employees’ performance to a certain level though not as much as time pressure however if the physical demand increases higher it will have a direct impact on the Time Pressure.
The study recommended that FODEC management board should organize burnout sessions for its employees and create sufficient time for them to be with their families. FODEC should also redesign jobs that are overwhelming in order to reduce the workloads of employees and spread it out evenly.
1.1 Background of the Study
Job stress is one of the popular phrases we see and hear with increasing frequency. Unfortunately, though it is used so often, and in so many different contexts, it is difficult to pin down an agreed meaning. Hans selye, the pioneer of study on stress initially focusing on this vital issue of great concern. Stress has been a topic of interest to researchers since the Second World War (Newton 1995).
Only recently, job stress has received increased significance among researchers, especially in the social sciences. Organizations are finally waking up to the fact that a lot of human potentials are being drained away due to job stress. Most of the employees say they are under extreme stress in the work environment.
Job stress is one big problem in this global world. Most of the employees often or very often feel stress due to work. The human resource managers in some organizations have mentioned stress to be a great impediment to the effective performance of employees.
Job stress has become an increasingly common negative outcome of today’s dynamic life. Masses experience stress due to overload, overwork, job insecurity, and the increasing pace of life. (American Psychological Association, 1997). The workplace of the 21st century is a fast-paced, dynamic highly stimulating environment that brings a large number of benefits and opportunities to those who work within it.
The ever-changing demands of the working world can increase levels of stress, especially for those who are consistently working under pressure such as Cameroonian workers, while pressure has its positive side in raising performance, if such pressure becomes excessive it can lead to stress which has negative consequences (Santiago 2003).
In recent times, many research studies have measured and determined the effects of job stress on the health and wellbeing of workers in the banking sector settings and elsewhere. Job stress detracts workers from qualitative working lives, enhances psychiatric morbidity, and contributes towards physical illness, such as musculoskeletal problems and depression. (ILO, 2001).
Cooper believes that stress results from a misfit between individuals and their environment (Cooper et al 1994). Stress is a dynamic state whereby the masses are faced with an opportunity, obstacle, constraints, or demand regarding what one desires and the implication of which is considered to be uncertain, negative, terrifying, and important. (Robbins, 2001).
Behr and Newman define job stress as” a situation arising from the reaction of people towards their tasks and results in changes that compel individuals to cope and adjust and disrupt their normal performance”. (Pfeffer, 1992). When a person is confronted with a situation that poses a threat and perceives that she or he does not have the capability or resources to handle the stressors, the imbalance that results at that point in time is termed as stress. (Luthan, 2005).
Stress is an individual’s physiological and emotional response to stimuli that place physical or physiological demands on the individual and create uncertainty and lack of personal control when important outcomes are at stake. (Samson, Richard, 2003).
Stress is the excitement, feeling of anxiety, or physical tension that occurs when the demands place on an individual are thought to exceed his ability of how to adjust. (Hellriegel, John 2004).“Stress is a negative reaction towards events that are thought as to the tax or exceed individual coping ability”. (Hockenbury, 2003). An accommodative reaction or response by an individual is a consequence of any action, situation, or event that places special demands on a person. (Ivancevich, Olekalns, 2008) It is now an established fact that the profession of accounting is full of stress and challenges.
According to International Labour Organization (ILO) 1986 it is recognized worldwide as a major challenge to individual mental and physical health, and organizational health. Although stress includes both good and bad. Robbins and Sanghi (2006) also contributed that stress is typically discussed in a negative Contex; though it also has a positive value. It is an opportunity when offers a potential gain. Rubina et al, (2008) contributed the same by saying that stress is not always harmful and indeed, the absence of stress is death.
In most cases, job stress is attributed to negative situations such as a formal reprimand by one’s superior for poor performances could also bring about job stress, such as job promotion and transfer to another location, job stress has attracted considerable attention in recent times especially within the context or organization behavior (Kazini et al 2008, Shahu and Cole 2008; Nilifar et al 2009). Most research findings suggest that when an individual comes under stress, his cognitive performance and decision-making may be adversely affected.
Kazini et al (2008) investigated the effect of job stress on employee’s productivity and found that there is a negative relationship between job stress and job productivity. Shahu and Gole (2008), inquired if there was any relationship between job performance, job satisfaction, and job stress and found that higher stress levels are related to lower performance, Sabir and Helge (2003), noted that the major negative effects on workers working and personal lives.
Santiago 2003 examine the negative effect of internal stress on police performance and found that the negative stress that often results from organizational setting through poor management can be debilitating, there is evidence to suggest that, there are ways in which an organization can help to reduce the instance of job stress, or better manage the issue when it arises. Effective people management good two-way communication between employers and employees, a suitable working environment, and effective work are just some of the factors which can have an impact.
However, there is the need to examine critically the nature and effect of job stress in the FODEC microfinance in Douala before suggesting, ways by which the management could deal with it. This is the main thrust of this study.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
Stress as a concept has attracted a lot of attention from many diverse disciplines such as psychiatry, clinical and social psychology, sociology, organizational behaviours, cultural anthropology as well as in medicine. This is not surprising because the causes and consequences of stress are multi-faceted and wide-ranging.
Often, job stress is attributed to negative situations such as poor performance, but poor performances could also bring about job stress. Job stress has attracted considerable attention in recent times especially within the context or organization behavior (Kazini et al 2008, Shahu and Cole 2008; Nilifar et al 2009).
Most research findings suggest that when an individual comes under stress, his cognitive performance and decision-making may be adversely affected. According to International Labour Organization (ILO,1969), stress is recognized worldwide as a major challenge to individual mental and physical health, and organizational health. Although stress includes both good and bad.
Stress is typically discussed in a negative Context though it also has a positive value (Robbins and Sanghi, 2006). It is an opportunity when it offers a potential gain. In fact, Rubina et al, (2008) contributed by saying that stress is not always harmful and indeed, the absence of stress is death. A key point to recognize is that individuals will react differently to stress in different situations and different stages in their working life and it will bring about different outcomes.
Job stress in an organisation has a profound impact on the performance of employees and has extensive practical and economic consequences. Various studies have examined the relationship between job stress and job performance. There are various job stressors in the workplace like workload, job security, role conflicts, autonomy, shift work, low salaries, technological changes, etc.
There is an impending need to analyze the major and most common factors related to job stress like workload stress, job security stress, and shift work stress and analyze how it affects the employees’ job performance. Organisations have been facing high employee turnover as an outcome of delayed control of these stressors affecting organisational productivity in a profound way.
Basically, these problems point out the need to assessing the effects of stress on employee’s productivity using FODEC microfinance in Douala as a case study with a view to identifying the factors that contribute to stress in the employees, and possible ways to solving some of these problems.
1.3 Research Question
What is the effect of workload, job security, and low salary on employees’ performance?
What is the relationship between the factors contributing to job stress and examine its impact on job performance?
What are the factors that are responsible for job stress in the FODEC microfinance in Douala?
What are the strategies for dealing with job stress among Cameroon workers?
1.4 Objectives of the Study
1.4.1 General Objectives
The general objective of the present study is to investigate the effects of workload, job security, and salary on employee’s performance in FODEC microfinance in Douala.
1.4.2 Specific objectives
To analyze the relationship between the factors contributing to job stress and examine its impact on job performance.
To investigate the factors that are responsible for job stress in the FODEC microfinance in Douala
To ascertain the strategies for dealing with job stress among Cameroon workers.