In the spirit of stress: part 1

On the way to buying some lunch at the grocery store at least 3 people nearly bumped into me. Why? – Well, they were focused on reading or writing something on their smartphone. In other words: totally absent-minded.

It is nothing new, that stress has increased during the past years to high health-threatening levels. In Switzerland, cost related to stress is estimated at approx. CHF 10 bn per year. Sure, in relation to the cost that has been incurred through financial crises, fraudulent behaviour and fines (let’s call them the three F’s) in the banking industry, this is totally in line. So what! – You may well ask.

What if, though, if there were a link between stress-cost and the three F’s?

If we look at the topic very briefly the following may be noted:

  1. The topic of stress really started to pick up as of the mid-90s. Approximately at the same time the financial industry especially pushed their bonus-induced remuneration policy. In other words: Managers were focussing on their bonus and therefore placed an all-out pressure on revenues. Stress for the employees?
  2. Due to the out of proportion focus on revenues it is small wonder that corners were cut and that nobody was looking too closely at what was happening. Result: Various financial crises culminating in the sub-prime crisis of 2007/2008 and continuing into country financial debt situations of unknown magnitudes. Stress for the employee and soon to be non-employee?
  3. Due to subprime crisis, country crisis, various fraudulent behaviour, etc. rules and regulations have increased to out-of-proportion-make-sense-levels. Stress for everybody, including manager, politicians, government officials, etc.?

Does this link of stress in connection with the 3 F’s make sense? – What are the symptoms of stress? Find out more on the topic in next week’s blog. OM