Center for the Promotion of Health in the New England Workplace

Resources for You and Your Workplace


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Fact Sheets and Books

  • CPH NEWS & VIEWS 
    Written by CPH-NEW investigators, CPH NEWS & Views is a semi-monthly column on emerging topics related to healthy workplaces.
  • Fact Sheet- Introduction to Job Stress (pdf)
    Developed by CPH-NEW, this fact sheet gives an overview of job stress including: Prevalence of job stress, signs and symptoms of job stress, health effects of job stress, suggestions for designing healthier jobs, examples of workplace stressors, and more.
  • Fact Sheet- Business Case for Addressing Job Stress (pdf)
    Developed by CPH-NEW, this fact sheet outlines the financial costs of job stress resulting from various aspects of workplace stress including: Turnover, health insurance, absenteeism, depressive illness, and more.
  • NIOSH- Stress At Work Booklet (pdf)
    This booklet provides information pertaining to what job stress is, causes of job stress, job conditions that may lead to stress, job stress and health, warning signs, stress and productivity, prevention, and examples of what some organizations have done to reduce job stress.
  • APA: Mind/Body Health
    This interactive tool shows how stress affects your body's physical health.
  • HelpGuide: Stress at Work: How to Reduce and Manage Job and Workplace Stress 
    Informational webpage that describes coping with work stress in today's uncertain climate, warning signs of excessive stress at work, ways to reduce job stress, and what managers or employers can do to reduce stress at work.
  • HelpGuide: Stress Management: How to Reduce, Prevent and Cope with Stress
    This informational webpage describes ways that individuals can reduce, prevents, and cope with stress.  Topics include: Identify the sources of stress in your life and look at how you currently cope with stress.  Additionally, the site provides various stress management strategies.
  • Sloan Work and Family Research Network
    This website provides various fact sheets that address topics such as: flexible work schedules, low wage workers, health and workplace flexibility, older workers, overwork, part-time work, shift work, and more.
  • Unhealthy Work: Causes, Consequences, and Cures
    Schnall, P.L., Dobson, M., Rosskam, E. (2009). Baywood Publishing Inc., Amityville, NY.
    This is an interdisciplinary book that examines the changing nature of work, new evidence linking work conditions with ill-health, and unhealthy work as a public health problem.
  • Wellness Council of America
    This website provides resources for improving worksite wellness and is dedicated to helping organizations build and sustain results-oriented wellness programs.  Some of their resources include: reports, interviews, case studies, presentations, surveys, and more.
  • Healthy Work: Stress, productivity and the reconstruction of working life. (1992). Karasek, R., Theorell, T. Basic Books, Inc. New York, NY.
    This book analyzes various stress/work studies done  in America and Europe. The authors discuss various ways to deal with the lack of worker participation in decision-making on the job. The authors conclude that the well-being of employees can and must be enhanced through meaningful involvement in formulating the manner and mode of their tasks.
  • The Workplace and Cardiovascular Disease
    Schnall, P., et al. (2000). Hanley & Belfus, Inc.
    In this book, Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is explored.  Research has identified a number of risk factors for hypertension and CVD but the authors state that the understanding of these disorders and the ability to manage the epidemic remain limited.  The authors write that to better understand and manage the CVD epidemic, current models need to incorporate a realm of social life in the workplace.

Surveys

  • Karasek, R., Brisson, C., Kawakami, N., Houtman I., Bongers, P., Amick, B. (1998). The job content questionnaire (JCQ): An instrument for internationally comparative assessments of psychosocial job characteristics.  Journal of Occupational Health Psychology, 3(4), 322-355 (PubMed). The JCQ is an instrument created by Karasek, R., et al for internationally comparative assessments of psychosocial job characteristics.
    Visit the Job Content Questionnaire Center at the University of Massachusetts Lowellfor details about the 49 item instrument and its subscales.  The best-known scales:
  • decision latitude
  • psychological demand
  • social support
    These are used to measure the high-demand/low-control/low-support model of job strain development. The demand/control model predicts, first, stress-related risk and, second, active-passive behavioral correlates of jobs. Other aspects of work demands are assessed as well
  • physical demand
  • job insecurity
  • NIOSH Quality of Worklife Questionnaire
    This 76-item questionnaire is available in the public domain;  questions deal with a wide assortment of work organization issues, such as hours of work, workload, worker autonomy, layoffs and job security, job satisfaction/stress, and worker well-being. Normative data are available by industry using personal interview data collected in the Fall/Winter of 2002; the final dataset contains responses from 2,765 persons. Download the PDF version of the survey from the NIOSH website.
  • Landsbergis, P.A., Schnall, P.L., Pickering, T.G., & Schwartz, J.E.(2002). Validity and reliability of a work history of a work history questionnaire derived from the Job Content Questionnaire. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, 44(11), 1037-1047. (PubMed)
  • Siegrist, J., Starke, D., Chandola, T., Godin, I., Marmot, M., Niedhammer, I., et al. (2004). The measurement of effort-reward imbalance at work: European comparisons. Social Science & Medicine, 58(8), 1483-1499. (PubMed)
  • NIOSH Quality of Worklife Questionnaire. This 76-item questionnaire targets a variety of work-life topics such as hours of work, workload, worker autonomy, layoffs/job security, job satisfaction, stress, and worker well being.
  • Working on Wellness Toolkit (pdf). Massachusetts Department of Public Health. This toolkit provides employers with ways to promote and protect the health and well-being of the organization. It contains a sample work site health improvement survey that focuses on company policies and programs, including those addressing stress.
  • Belkic, K. (2003). The occupational stress index: An approach derived from cognitive ergonomics and brain research for clinical practice.  Cambridge International Science Publishing.
  • AFT- Do you have Job Stress? (pdf)
    These twelve questions are divided up into three categories in order to assess the level of demand, control, and support that you have.  It also provides information about what unions can do about job stress, risk factors, warning signs, and suggestions and strategies for combating workplace stress.
  • American Institute of Job Stress: Job Stress Questionnaire
    How much job stress do you have? Use this Likert scale questionnaire to assess how much stress you have.
  • APA: Stress Smarts Quiz
    Quick, six question quiz about health and stress. After each answer is revealed, there is short synopsis of how the body is affected by stress. 

Presentation Materials

  • Beyond Breathing: Organizational Approaches to Reduce Job Stress (pdf)
    Nicole Champagne, Suzanne Nobrega, University of Massachusetts Lowell. Workshop given to the Ounce of Prevention Conference, October 21, 2008.
  • Work Organization, Stress, the Changing Nature of Work, and Cardiovascular Disease: Part I  PartII
    Paul Landsbergis, PhD, MPH, Department of Community and Preventive Medicine, Mt Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY. Presentation given to the Partnership for a Heart Healthy, Stroke-Free MA annual meeting, June 2, 2006.
  • Work Stressors: Causes, Consequences, and Cures (pdf)
    Peter L. Schnall, MD, MPH, Professor of Medicine, University of CA Irvine and Director of the Center for Social Epidemiology.  Presentation given to the Partnership for a Heart Healthy, Stroke-Free MA annual education conference, January 30, 2009.

Videos

  • Working With Stress
    This is a NIOSH training and educational video program on the topic of workplace stress. It "describes workplace factors that can create or exacerbate worker stress, and suggests practical measures for reducing job-related stress through changes in work organization" (17 minutes).
  • Stress: Portrait of a Killer
    In this video, Standford neurobiologist and author Robert Sapolsky compares the stress response of humans to animals of Africa. It reveals how dangerous prolonged exposure to stress can be, while explaining that "today, we turn on the same life-saving physical reaction to cope with intense, ongoing stressors - and we can't seem to turn it off" (5 minutes).

Organizations Focused on Job Stress

These websites are excellent sources for tools and guidelines that help employers implement workplace changes to reduce stress:

Reports