21 August 2013

Office workers suffer from 'desk rage'

Stressed out office workers are typically suffering from ‘desk rage’ twice a day, with the worst culprits being technology, rude customers and colleagues.

Stressed out office workers are typically suffering from ‘desk rage’ twice a day, a new report claims.

Crashing computers, rude customers and colleagues who take the credit for their work are the things most likely to drive employees mad, according to research.

A study commissioned by Old Jamaica Extra Fiery Ginger Beer says 51% of British workers experience feelings of rage and anger in the workplace. Common causes of tension are squabbles over who makes the tea and not having time to take a proper lunch break.

People also say they get wound up by office politics, printer problems and their concentration being interrupted by other people talking.

Monday is the most likely time for staff to experience desk rage with 42% feeling most cross and impatient on the first day back after a weekend off.

A quarter of those who took part in the survey say they get wound up by someone using their desk and leaving it in a mess. Office workers also say they get annoyed by colleagues spending too much time surfing the internet, using social media or going on smoking breaks.

Pressure leads to feelings of anger

Gavin Herbert, from Old Jamaica Extra Fiery Ginger Beer, says: “British adults are renowned for their work hard, play hard attitude, which means that when they are in the office, they are used to coping with heavy workloads and lots of pressure.

“When working in this type of highly stressed environment, smaller niggles can get heightened and appear to be a big deal. And on a Monday, many people will be tired and grumpy after a long weekend, which adds to the likelihood of them blowing a fuse if someone skips the tea round or the printer stops working.”

One way to try and stop your team from feeling angry and demoralised is to make sure you thank them when they have been working hard. Positive feedback can help diffuse tension in the office and raise staff morale.

The poll revealed that most angry workers will suffer in silence, with 64% saying they try to ignore the source of their annoyance. However 13% will take the bull by the horns and confront whoever is raising their stress levels.

And 10% even admit that they will get into a row with others in the workplace.

  • One in three people are most wound up by their colleagues.
  • one in five find their boss the biggest source of annoyance.
  • For one in four, their negative mood is most likely to be down to issues with technology and equipment.

Mr Herbert adds: “What is interesting is that when left to their own devices, British workers are generally a happy and content bunch. It’s only when other people – work colleagues, the boss, or tricky clients – get involved that things go pear shaped.”