Chan, H.Y. and Nair, E., National University of Singapore, Singapore
A comparison is made between the value of informal groups (IG) within and external to organisations in relation to overall perceived stress (PS). The aim is to examine the relationship between support received from these informal groups and the level of PS experienced by the subjects. Subjects that have IG within the organisation are expected to have lower PS and be positively evaluated by supervisors as compared to those who are dependent only on other IG for support. Subjects are 237 professional direct care- givers from voluntary welfare organisations in Singapore comprising 28 male and 168 female of various ethnic origins. Sample is chosen as high- risk group for burnout. A self report questionnaire including the Perceived Stress Inventory was used to collect information on PS, source of problems, the availability, structure and perceived value of the IG. Questionnaires are mailed to employees in organisations and returned via mail or to a coordinator at the organisation. Results indicate significant correlation between IG support and PS. Supervisor ratings were not correlated with PS but is moderately related to IG. When PS and IG are related when both originated from the organisation. Findings have implications for high-stress occupations with high risk of burnout. Organisations may reduce turnover and reduced performance through encouraging IG support within the organisation.