1 in 5 workers battling anxiety and fear; presenteeism on the rise

One in five U.S. workers surveyed by staffing agency Adecco USA say the recession is affecting their emotional health as they battle anxiety and fear over the potential loss of their jobs.

Stressed out employees, managers, and even owners seem to spend the better part of each day figuring out ways to avoid work, complaining about the work they have, or redoing work. These behaviors have recently been reported in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine as a workplace condition called presenteeism showing up for work but not being very productive. It's like absenteeism … but worse. With presenteeism, employees are still showing up and still receiving a full paycheck. But they likely are disrupting and demoralizing the other workers and not doing the jobs they are being paid to do.

The cost of this presenteeism in the U.S. alone is in the hundreds of billions of dollars and results in over 2.5 billion lost workdays per year.


Ira S Wolfe


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  2. Brad Federman April 5, 2009 at 9:05 pm -

    I could not agree more. Fear and anxiety already play a role in everyday work life for many people, but the stakes have been raised. I have clients that are struggling with this. Unfortunately when you are focused on fear, it limits your ability to see opportunity.

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  4. Malcolm Chlan April 3, 2009 at 2:05 pm -

    This does not surprise me. Experience and all the degrees in the world can’t save some right now and the fear is starting to take over many. Lets all hope that we hit the bottom of this downfall so workplace moral can start to see an incline again.