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Why (high) work pressure should be a more important topic

Workload De Unie

'How are you?' You ask a former colleague who is speaking to you for the first time in two months. "Busy, very busy!" Is the answer. You said that last time, you think to yourself. It seems like everyone is always busy. A bit of hustle and bustle can be great. But is it also okay if you are always (too) busy with your work? In this blog, we explain why we should consider high work pressure more often and what it does to you.

What is workload?

Contrary to popular belief, work pressure is different from just being busy with your work. Only when there is an imbalance between workload and your ability to perform work do you speak of work pressure. For example, when you have too much work to do or too little time.

In recent years, the workload has increased everywhere, and newspapers are constantly writing about it. Too few staff for too much work, too tight deadlines. Not only does the quality of the work suffer, but also your mental and physical condition. And that is worrisome. Particularly because a high work pressure is often difficult to discuss with your employer, because the definition of 'high work pressure' differs per person.

How does work pressure arise?

Work pressure can be exacerbated by your home situation, but often arises from certain work conditions. That are experienced differently by everyone: what is work pressure for one can feel like a nice challenge for another. That makes it such a tricky problem.

In general, there are three factors that can cause work pressure, namely:

  • Environment: The environment exerts pressure on the individual. Think of collective labor agreements and legislation, but also of social support from colleagues or appreciation from external parties.
  • Workload: workload consists of the content of the work, size of the workload and time available. Think of a bad workplace, but also difficult customers.
  • The organization's ability to regulate: these are factors that increase the workload, such as poor schedules, insufficient work coordination or a lack of a good training policy.

Be accessible outside of work

Availability for your boss during private hours remains a difficult issue. This can also cause a high workload. Want to read more about this hot topic? Then check our blog about accessible during your holiday.

What to do against high work pressure?

The best solution is to communicate clearly. When you notice that you can no longer cope with the work and the quality - and perhaps also your mood or energy level - is deteriorating, you must indicate this as soon as possible. Indicate what you enjoy working and what you dislike. If you do not declare anything, your employer will not know that you are bothered. And for your employer it is also important that you are in the right place. Look together for a way to reduce your workload.


Want to know more about work pressure? Or address advice about your situation and your employer about it? Contact our Service Center! Call or email us on 0345 - 851 963 or

Source: MZ Services. They make the role of a works council just that little bit easier with tailor-made advice, guidance and training.