Are Leaders More Stressed Out?

Stressed out!
Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Stressed out!

Those in leadership positions self-report lower anxiety levels and have cortisol levels 27 percent lower than non-leaders, according to a recent study by seven academics from Harvard, Stanford and the University of California at San Diego.

To test these findings, Flyby walked around Harvard Yard and randomly asked 20 people whether they considered themselves leaders or non-leaders and how stressed they were on a scale from 1 to 10, with 10 being the most stressed. Exactly half identified themselves as leaders and, interestingly enough, those leaders reported higher stress levels than their subordinate counterparts. On average, leaders rated their stress at a 6.9, while non-leaders gave themselves a 5.7. Now, we wouldn't presume to have conducted a scientific survey, but it does suggest that, more so than elsewhere, leadership at Harvard means serious business!

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