A critical evaluation of the effectiveness of a stress management programme

Crous, Karen Deborah
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stress management training is costly, yet widely used in industry with high expectations of the immediate and long-term benefits to both individual employees and the organisation (Monat & Lazarus( 1991). It has become apparent that, in spite of the banality of such stress management training, there is a significant lag in evaluative research to support these techniques (Cullen & Sandberg, 1987). The aim of the study was thus to appraise the effectiveness of a stress management programme in terms of individual psychological benefits (reduced stress; increased coping capacity; perceived control) and work attitudes (job satisfaction; propensity to leave the organisation). A second aim of the study was to determine whether, over the course of the intervention, there would be any significant differences in the outcome of the programme, for those demonstrating negative or positive affective predispositions. Data was collected using a self-report strategy in a field setting, using a short-term longitudinal research design. The sample consisted of 27 employees participating in a stress management programme. Matched-pair t-tests were generated to evaluate the extent of the impact of participation in the stress management progamme on subjects, from pretest to posttest. The main findings of the study were that the stress management programme intervention yielded only small changes in stress, coping, perceived control, job satisfaction and propensity to leave. Theoretical and practical implications of the findings are discussed and future directions for research considered.
A dissertation submitted to the Faoulty of Arts, University of the Witwatersrand, in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts (Industrial Psyohology).
Stress management -- Study and teaching -- South Africa.