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Storytelling Reading Passage
Stress of Workplace
- Whenever someone claims they’re too busy, what exactly are they doing? Those with tight schedules may have to forego the occasional three-course meal, while others may opt out of lunch altogether. A monthly “sickie” might be tough for some individuals to take. One other group of folks works every night and on the weekends as if it were nothing out of the ordinary. Most CEOs and CTOs have workloads that range from extremely busy to completely overwhelming. At Kearney, where he serves as vice president and head of telecommunications for the Asia-Pacific region, Neil Plumridge reports working anywhere from 45 to 80 hours a week, with the average being 60.
- When he does not get enough sleep, misses appointments, and experiences personal stress, Plumridge is overworked. Plumridge has a daughter who is 3 years old, and a son is expected in October. When he gets fewer than six hours of sleep for three consecutive nights and has continually rescheduled appointments, “and the third one is on the family side,” he realizes he has too much on his plate. If I forget a significant day, such as my birthday or wedding anniversary, chaos ensues. Being “too busy” is a subjective concept. After a while, though, anybody might begin to feel too busy since stress makes it difficult to sleep and harms your mental and physical health.
- All fifty state workers’ compensation systems report that stress is the leading cause of missed workdays and workplace injury. When anxious, individuals take 16.6 additional days off than the typical worker. There are several expenses associated with stress. According to Comcare, the federal government’s insurance provider, in 2003–2004, 7% of claims were for psychological injury, but they cost nearly 27% of all claims. Some stress-relieving activities, such as a game of golf or a massage, may appear enticing, but according to experts, the actual cure is to reconsider your workload. Neil Plumridge states that determining what must be altered is one of his most essential responsibilities. This might involve adding additional personnel, more time, or altering the objectives. It may take a few days to make a decision. He claims that he and his mates function as a “coaching team” to assist one another through challenging business situations. He argues that a new perspective might be quite beneficial.
- Executive stress is not limited to major corporations. Vanessa Stoykov has established and runs her own advertising and public relations firm specializing in financial and professional services firms for the past seven years. One year after Stoykov gave birth to her first child, Evolution Media debuted on the BRW Fast 100 list of the quickest-growing small enterprises. Managing her own business provides Stoykov with the mental stimulation she requires to develop. She acknowledges that, like everyone else, she occasionally experiences days where she feels as though her brain is going to explode. Stoykov must focus on short-term stress reduction, such as weekends spent hiking or the occasional “mental wellness” day, rather than allocating additional work due to the company’s growth phase. There is an increase in work, not a decrease since although we are hiring more people, they must be trained and educated on the company’s culture and clients, so there is really more work.
- Find the root of the problem: A Melbourne-based psychologist who focuses on executive coaching named Jan Elsner claims that successful corporate leaders and high-potential employees thrive in challenging environments. According to her, some people do better under sustained stress while others do better with intermittent bursts of high adrenaline followed by times of quiet. “We may tell if a person is physically stressed or not using measures of hormones in their urine and blood,” she says. “However, this tells us nothing about the quality of their stress or the emotional and cognitive ramifications of that stress.” It is pertinent to note that Eisner’s practice is significantly influenced by positive psychology, which holds that “positive” experiences, such as being engaged, challenged, and feeling like one is contributing to something worthwhile, do not counterbalance negative ones, such as stress, but rather help people become more resilient over time. Thus, good stress—being tested and rewarded—accumulates like negative stress. Elsner teaches senior business leaders who increasingly use yoga and meditation to reduce stress. She cites research showing that meditation may change brain chemistry and help people “retrain” their stress response. You can control your brain by learning meditation and yoga.
- AT Kearney’s vice-president for Australia, Neil Plumridge, believes that stress is usually caused by our excessive expectations of ourselves. When I’m confident it won’t happen, I’ll tell one customer I’ll do something tomorrow and then tell another. I could have asked the clients, “Why don’t I offer it to you in 48 hours?” instead of stressing myself out. The customer is unconcerned. Many people struggle with overcommitting on their own. We describe it as Parkinson’s law of procrastination, in which the quantity of labor expands to fill the available time. Recent research suggests that it may be in people’s genetic composition to do so.
- A Journal of Experimental Psychology study released in February found that people consistently anticipate a gradual reduction in their workload. Professors John Lynch of Duke University and Gal Zauberman of the University of North Carolina, who wrote the paper, said that this is a common misunderstanding. In most cases, a person’s schedule will be exactly as full in two weeks or a month as it is right now. But it doesn’t seem like that in practice,” they said. As soon as something doesn’t have to be done immediately, people often give in to pressure and agree to things they would never agree to otherwise. What this means is that they severely discount the value of future time commitments. When compared to the present, why do we think there will be more “surplus” time in the future? The study found that people tend to underestimate how long it would take to do tasks that will take some time and have problems foreseeing future competition for their time.
Stress of Workplace IELTS Reading Questions
Use the information in the passage to match the people (listed A-D) with opinions below. Write the appropriate letters A-D in boxes 1-5 on your answer sheet.
NB: You may use any letter more than once.
- Jan Elsner
- Vanessa Stoykov
- Gal Zauberman
- Neil Plumridge
- The highest levels of a firm are typically where work stress occurs.
- It would be advantageous to engage more people’s thoughts to reduce stress.
- There are situations when a temporary holiday does not result in less work.
- When it comes to providing satisfactory service to consumers, stress is a step that would not work.
- It is untrue that stress will be reduced more in the future than it is now.
Complete the following summary of the paragraphs of Reading Passage, using NO MORE THAN TWO WORDS from the Reading Passage for each answer. Write your answers in boxes 6-11 on your answer sheet.
According to data from the National Workers’ Compensation, stress is the primary factor in 6. ______ that results in lost time. Employees spend roughly 7. ______ out from work due to stress. Our biggest worry is not just time, but also the significant expenditures that are caused by this. In contrast to the almost 27% expenses in all claims, according to an official insurer, mental health difficulties accounted for only 8. ______ of all claims. Stress-relieving activities like 9. ______ and 10. ______ are possible; nevertheless, experts advised another realistic solution: reevaluate 11. ______.
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Choose the correct letter, A, B, C or D. Write your answers in boxes 19-21 on your answer sheet.
12. Which of the following workplace stress is NOT mentioned according to Plumridge in the following options
- Inadequate time of sleep
- Alteration of appointment
- Not enough time spend on family
- Unable to concentrate on work
13. Which of the following solution is NOT mentioned in helping reduce the work pressure according to Plumridge
- Increase more time
- Do sports and massage
- Lower expectations
- Allocate more personnel
14. What is the point of view of Jan Elsner towards work stress
- The medical test only provides part of the stress-management data.
- In stressful situations, samples will be anomalous.
- Physical attachment is inferior to that of the mind and emotions.
- One well-designed solution can release all stress
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Stress of Workplace Reading Answers
6. Workplace injury
7. 16.6 weeks
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