Stress is Linked to Poor Management


A new report from CIPD and Simply Health shows that a rise in stress is linked to poor management. Maguire Training published this blog following the CIPD and Simply Health report in 2019, 5 years later, we are seeing similar patterns in organisations' lack of support for their managers to understand stress, mental health, wellbeing and illness.


The new research, which surveyed 918 organisations across the UK, covering more than 6.5 million employees, shows that stress is still a growing problem in the workplace. 76%, up from 37% in 2019, of UK businesses have seen an increase in stress-related absence in the last year. They found that the number of sickness-related absences (including stress and wellbeing), has risen to 7.8 days a year, compared with 2021 at 3.4 days.


The report shows the top three causes of stress-related absence are:


67% (2023), up from 62% (2019) - workloads/volume of work


37% (2023), down from 43% (2019) - management style


30% - Non-work factors, illness/health issues 


The need for more training


The new 2023 report reveals that there has been an increase in organisations that say they provide necessary mental health training and support employee mental health. With 78% of organisations reporting that they provide training support, up from 30% in 2019, this is a welcome increase in numbers. However, we are still seeing that Managers are shying away from the causes of increased absence and stress in the workplace, as we see with the figures above, because they lack the skills and the confidence to become more engaged for fear of making matters worse or provoking legal consequences 


Most respondents indicated that health and wellbeing budgets will remain the same or even increase in the coming year;

70% see their health and wellbeing activity as an opportunity to boost employee engagement. 

59% see it as a chance to embed this into their employee retention strategies moving forward.

47% planning to promote employee wellbeing as part of their employee value proposition. There’s recognition that health and wellbeing can enhance employer brand.


Training will help managers to be more confident in supporting their team when experiencing mental ill health and stress. Knowing how to approach conversations sensitively and how they can support staff experiencing mental ill health is vital, as is listening and offering the right support early on.


By training managers and senior leaders to prioritise wellness at work and making a greater investment in health and wellbeing, they will become confident and competent in supporting staff.


Here at Maguire Training, we have an impressive range of classroom-based courses and virtual programmes delivered by specially trained facilitators around this topic, including Mental Health Awareness for Leaders, Supervisors and Managers. For more flexible learning, our new, 30-minute eLearning modules, Managing Stress and Mental Health Awareness, will provide high-quality, up-to-date content and interactive quizzes to give you the best introduction to these topics.


If you need further information then please call us on 0333 5777 144 for a discussion with our dedicated L&D Training team about your training requirements. Alternatively, simply hit the ‘Contact Us’ on any page of our website and we’ll get right back to you.

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