Some Work Stress is Best

Survey Shows Execs Perform Better When Under a Little Pressure

The Creative Group
181 Bay Street, Suite 820
Toronto, ON M5J 2T3
Contact: Naz Araghian
[email protected]

Toronto, ON. (April 11, 2016) -- Work stress is par for the course for creative leaders, according to new research from staffing firm The Creative Group. Seven in 10 (70 per cent) advertising and marketing executives interviewed said their job is somewhat or very stressful. But there’s an upside: Nearly one-third (32 per cent) of respondents claimed the more stress they experience, the better their performance; another 60 per cent reported they thrive under some pressure.

“Although feeling challenged at work can inspire action and propel decision-making among professionals, employees at every level - and employers - need to be wary of relying on pressure as a primary motivator,” said Deborah Bottineau, senior regional manager of The Creative Group. “Taking the time to recharge allows teams the opportunity to refocus their priorities without unnecessary stress, and strategize new ideas to further business growth.”

Advertising and marketing executives were asked, “In general, how stressful is your job?” Their responses:

Very stressful


Somewhat stressful


Not too stressful


Not at all stressful


Don’t know




*Responses do not total 100 per cent due to rounding.

Executives were also asked, “Which of the following statements best describes how you feel workplace stress affects your productivity?” Their responses:

Bring it on! The more stressful the situation, the more productive I am.


A little bit of stress motivates me, but too much impedes my productivity.


My productivity suffers when experiencing any level of stress.




“Executives with years of experience handling stress shouldn’t take their own abilities to manage for granted. They must remain mindful of recognizing and supporting employees who may be struggling to handle work pressures. Checking in regularly to offer extra resources and guidance help ensure that employees remain productive, committed and refreshed,” added Bottineau.

The Creative Group offers three tips to foster a healthy level of work stress among employees:

  1. Ask staff for input. Touch base regularly with team members to ensure their to-do lists are reasonable. Help workers with time management and prioritization, and solicit feedback on how to operate more efficiently and effectively.
  2. Encourage teamwork. When it comes to solving business challenges, two (or more) heads are often better than one. Foster collaboration in the workplace by providing plenty of opportunities for staff to partner with each other on initiatives.
  3. Offer relief. Overburdened employees can quickly slip into autopilot, which can stall innovation. Provide project professionals or consultants who can assist core staff during peak activity periods.

About the Research

The survey was developed by The Creative Group and conducted by an independent research firm. It includes responses from more than 400 U.S. advertising and marketing executives.

About The Creative Group

The Creative Group (TCG) specializes in placing a range of highly skilled interactive, design, marketing, advertising and public relations professionals with a variety of firms on a project and full-time basis. More information, including online job-hunting services, candidate portfolios and TCG’s blog, can be found at Follow us at, and @RobertHalf_CAN on Twitter for additional workplace news and hiring trends. 

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