What is the cause of the most stress at work?

The things that cause people the most stress in the workplace aren’t always what you’d expect. They’re not to do with having a heavy workload or having multiple projects to juggle. Although there’s no denying these cause stress, you can plan for them; you know when a deadline for a project is, or when a big conference is coming up.

The biggest cause of stress is when something is thrown at you unexpectedly. This is especially the case when it’s linked to loved ones. Imagine you’ve got a big presentation to give in ten minutes when you get a call from your child’s school to say they’re really sick and need to be taken home. Or you’re a mother on a business trip abroad and you can hear your baby screaming at the other end of a phone because they’ll only drink your milk. Or you get a phone call that one of your elderly parents has had a bad fall. It’s these emotional stresses that employees are unexpectedly faced with in the middle of a busy day that are liable to cause a complete emotional meltdown.

Thankfully many forward-thinking companies are becoming aware that to support their employees they need to help support their families.

One of the front-runners in this area is Goldman Sachs. They are now offering all 6,000 UK employees up to 20 days of emergency nannies or carers for not only children but also spouses, civil or domestic partners, parents, parents-in-law and grandparents.

They have even launched a programme to ship mothers’ breast milk home to their children if they have to work overseas.

Sally Boyle told The Guardian, the bank’s International Head of Human Capital Management, said the policy was a result of continuing conversations with staff.

“Providing care to children, elderly parents or other dependents is a significant part of many employees’ lives. It’s important we recognise the challenges that can come from balancing these commitments with work and do everything we can to support our employees and their families when the need arises,” she said.

We think it’s great that big multi-national corporations are now focusing on offering help with dependents to reduce pressure on employees. At Grey Matters we follow the same philosophy.

We help people claim Attendance Allowance for their parents and grandparents. Many people are unaware that all over 65’s may be eligible for Attendance Allowance from the government. It’s not means tested, is tax free and if granted, can result in a weekly payment of £85 for the rest of that person’s life. The difficulty comes in claiming for the Allowance. It involves a very long form and approval depends on the exact wording used in answering the questions. And this is where our expertise comes in.

We believe, like Goldman Sachs, when you feel your loved ones are getting the care they need, the everyday stresses of work become a lot more bearable.