NEW ALBANY, Ind. (June 24, 2014) — A study by IU Southeast School of Business Assistant Professor of Strategic Management and Entrepreneurship, Lisa M. Russell, analyzes the relationship between stress and burnout in high-risk occupations, and the role of leadership in moderating this relationship.
It is no surprise that high-risk occupations such as law enforcement have been associated with officers suffering high levels of illness, burnout, absenteeism and premature retirement than other fields of work. For years, leaders have been looking for ways to regulate these stressors and manage a happier workforce. Exploring the relationship between stress, burnout and leadership is the latest research, thought to be the only one of its kind, in the journal Management Research News from global academic publisher, Emerald Group Publishing.
The research, ‘An empirical investigation of high-risk occupations: Leader influence on employee stress and burnout among police’, developed by Lisa M. Russell, surveyed 379 police officers from nine US agencies and concludes that stress not only affects the individual concerned, but can also have a negative impact on an organization’s performance.
Statistical methods such as hierarchical regression analysis, multiple moderated hierarchal regression analysis and other statistical methods were used to produce findings that have strong implications for leaders in high-risk occupations where policy, bureaucracy and life and death decision making is quite the norm.
“Essentially, officers often work to accomplish tasks and organizational goals in exchange for leader recognition in the form of promotion, pay rises or verbal acknowledgement,” said Russell. “But what is evident from the study is that the actual issue is more complex than originally expected. Transformational leadership appears to be effective at reducing burnout at lower levels of stress, but less so at high levels, therefore it is necessary not to just address leadership at this point, but also factors such as home life, interdepartmental practices and physical demands, which all exacerbate the rate of burnout alongside leadership.”
To read the study, visit www.emeraldinsight.com/tk/policeburnout.