Doctoral Project Abstract
Organizational Stress and what to do about it
Carmelo Di Salvo
The focus of this project is a one day seminar that explores organizational stress, one of the most problematic phenomena in our society today. Stress costs organizations $200 - $300 billion annually, and has wreaked havoc in the lives of employees and leaders alike. For organizations to not only survive, but prosper in the 21st century marketplace, a plan of renewal that involves leaders, employees and change in the organization is necessary.
To reach this level of success, the seminar will first begin by exploring what organizational stress is. Factors such as downsizing, work overload, changing technology, etc, all contribute to the problem. Further, the seminar then examines how these stressors affect the body and have adverse consequences on key body functions, that may, in the long run, bring about serious mental and physical health problems that include depression, heart disease, stroke, and cancer.
The following part of the seminar looks at the effects of stress on the organization. Whereas during the time of the Industrial Revolution stress may have included unhealthy working conditions and poor treatment by management, it is not unusual for today's organizations to have to deal with stress-related absenteeism, employee violence, customer service problems, and litigation. It is clear that stress on employees and leaders is nothing new, but the kind of stress they deal with has changed.
Finally, the path to organizational renewal is designed to bring a fresh perspective on not only managing stress, but more importantly, bringing renewal and restoration to an organization. From, how followers view leaders, and what they desire in them, to the collaborative effort of leaders and followers in strategy/structure alignment, global leadership, and innovation/creativity, are all important to renewing an organization for the 21st century.