Publication Details

This conference paper was originally published as Oke, A & Dawson, P, Contextualising workplace stress: the experience of bank employees in Nigeria, Australian and New Zealand Academy of Management 22nd Annual Conference, Auckland, New Zealand, 2-5 December 2008.


This article draws attention to the contextual dimensions to workplace stress and advocates the need for more sociological research. In a study of ten banking organizations in Nigeria, quantitative data are captured using a survey instrument and qualitative data are collected through a series of semi-structured interviews. This dual methods approach is used to investigate workplace stress and a key finding is that employee experience of stress reflects both individual characteristics as well as more collective qualities that are shaped by contextual factors. We conclude that too much emphasis is placed on individual-based programmes for managing stress and that more attention needs to be given to broader contextual issues in managing the conditions in which workplace stress is experienced.