Are marketers facing a stress epidemic?
You’re building a successful marketing career and pursuing happiness in your wider life, but what if the pursuit of the former inhibits the latter? In a report funded by Axa insurance this month, 4 in 5 of employees said they felt stressed in a typical week and almost 1 in 10 felt stressed all the time. In an always-on world, many of us are taking our work home with us, with emails, calls and projects to finish after hours. It can be hard to escape that feeling of mounting pressure when you’ve got a stressful job that you can’t leave behind in the 9-5.
Perhaps you’re unsurprised by those numbers? After all, stress is often seen as part and parcel of any successful career. The pressure of big responsibilities and ambitious company growth plans can be catalysts for some of the best achievements in marketers at all levels. You wouldn’t want to be too relaxed where you are, at least not to the point that your work ceases to be stimulating or challenging. Indeed, boredom was a reason 2 out of 5 claimed to be unhappy at work in CV Library’s latest job satisfaction study. Here Marketing had one of the highest levels of job dissatisfaction – over 50% – a real surprise for us at Marketing Moves as most of the candidates we speak to are really passionate about marketing! Clearly though a lot of people experience stress at work and still feel satisfied with their job. 2 out of 5 is markedly less than the 4 in 5 that feel stressed.
However if the stress you feel is debilitating, you need to do something about it. Perhaps stress is making you procrastinate or underperform in important tasks because you’re too stressed to face them? Perhaps stress is affecting your mood and making you irritable with colleagues, ruining your working relationships? Maybe you’re the unlucky 1 in 10 who is stressed ALL the time? This is not okay.
If your stress is so long-term or recurrent that it is becoming more than you can bear, you need to take action. It might be that your current company can offer you support – make your workload more manageable, bring in someone else to work toward important deadlines with you or make targets more realistic. Sometimes a conversation with the right person can make all the difference. Don’t suffer in silence if there’s help within reach. In some cases though, this might not be possible and a more drastic change might be in order. Rather than an impending midlife crisis, how about a change of company or team?
Remember companies can have very different internal cultures, some markedly more supportive or pressurising than others. Bosses and colleagues that understand the pressures you face and help ensure your workload is not unmanageable are invaluable. Positive working relationships in general are your vanguard in the fight against stress, while negative ones can be a major cause. In marketing, support can also come in terms of resources – a less limiting budget, more agency support, better automation/email/social media management tools, stronger strategic direction from senior colleagues or more realistic target-setting.
When looking for a new job, you might even choose a role with a slightly different remit, including more of a focus on the parts of your current role that you enjoy. This might just kickstart your career and be a door to a happier working life. But choose carefully, you’re back to square one if all you’ve done is swap old problems for a set of new ones.
Find the right marketing role for you through a specialist consultancy that gets to know technology companies and their marketing teams long-term. Call our experienced recruitment consultants on 01932 253 352 or email our director Melvin Day on firstname.lastname@example.org