Hangovers - an all too common part of the workplace

Just to continue the sadly unsurprised-face theme of today's updates, let it now be declared that, according to a study by Norwich Union Healthcare, a sizeable amount of people turn up to work (well done)...hungover (not well done).

Their survey of 1000 employees and 250 companies found that about a third (32%) of respondents did own up to turning up to work in a hurty hurty hungover state.

"Own up" is about right, because the Poorhouse is rather surprised it's not more. Well, unless people are just taking ever more sick days...which it could well be. In the eyes of the employers themselves, more than three quarters consider alcohol to be the number one threat to employee's turning up and being healthy.

15% of people did 'fess up to being overtly drunk at work. And, most of them and the hangover-devotees do admit it does affect their demeanour and work skills.

Thirty-six per cent of employees find it hard to concentrate, 35 per cent of employees find they are less productive and 42 per cent feel tired to the point of being very sleepy.
A quarter do the minimum amount of work and go home as soon as possible, while nearly one in 10 makes lots of mistakes which they need to rectify.

A background sample of how many employees always do the minimum amount of work and go home as soon as possible was not specified, let alone those whose concentration wander like a marching soldier possessed.

Hangovers are more prevalent in some work areas than others. Unfortunately, it's not the safest ones. Although undoubtedly a problem in many ways, there is usually a limit to the damage that your average office keyboard-jockey can do due to lapses. Less so those in manufacturing and construction jobs, where danger, pain, agony and death are more serious possibilities.

A third of construction industry workers are happy enough to confess to the surveyors that they make "lots of mistakes that they needed to rectify the next day" thanks to the perils of hangovers or drunkeness...and a fifth of the construction population turn up to raise their great structures hungover at least once a week.

The Poorhouse suggests you don't bother buying a house then; between the credit crunch and self-inducedly-ill people putting them together, it's perhaps not the most attractive prospect.

Seriously, work can lead you astray...all part of the British "culture" apparently, whether it be for intrinsic pleasure or as a self-medication for stressful times. Says Professor Cooper:

It's the jobs where there is most stress - long hours, high expectations, short-term contracts and bad management - where you get the most excessive drinking.


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