Study reports that 15% of clock-watchers reported feelings of burn-out… A new study carried out by the Kingston University Business School has found that workers who aren’t able to involve themselves intensely in their work are more likely to develop stress, exhaustion and feelings of being burnt out.
Researchers conducted detailed tests to measure engagement and motivation on 227 workers, the majority of whom were in the early to midpoint of the careers. They discovered that the 15% of workers who reported feelings of watching the clock and not contributing much at work had the highest levels of burn-out. The study also found that workers who felt isolated or withdrawn were more likely to suffer from stress as a result of the frustration and apathy they felt in the workplace.
Kerstin Alfes of Kingston Business School who was responsible for conducting the survey (alongside York University Toronto and Kent University) said:
“You might expect someone who is withdrawn from their work to be more balanced and less emotionally drained because they have time for other things in their life, but we found it’s these people who are having severe problems with stress-related exhaustion. Those who felt no major connection to their work had more sleepless nights and generally lower levels of well-being. Just as alienation from one’s emotions leads to emotional exhaustion and lower levels of well-being, so too does alienation from one’s work.”
She added that she thought the results were significant because they provided a clear link between general happiness and a feeling of connecting at the workplace:
“From these findings, we believe that if you’re really unhappy with – or detached from – your work it can have a negative spill over into your private life. Work and life seem to be very closely connected to self-worth,”
The research also showed that employees are happier and more productive if they feel they are making a genuine impact at work and their skills are being fully utilised.