The perception of stress, behavior in stressful situations and mental health of bank employees within a German-Ukrainian comparative study
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Otto-von-Guericke-University, Magdeburg, Germany (Institute of Occupational Medicine, Medical Faculty)
Kharkiv National Medical University, Kharkiv, Ukraine (Department of Hygiene and Ecology No. 2)
Beatrice Thielmann   

Otto-von-Guericke-University, Institute of Occupational Medicine, Medical Faculty, Leipziger Straße 44 (House 20), 39120 Magdeburg, Germany
Online publication date: 2021-08-31
Objectives: The banking sector is a branch of the global labor market that is increasingly facing stress. This can have some negative effects on mental and physical health. The aim of the study was to examine the management of stress and the assessment of mental health in 2 European countries. Material and Methods: The sample comprised 90 (52%) German and 83 (48%) Ukrainian bank employees (BA) (N = 173). To achieve the aim of the study, the following questionnaires were used: the Differential Stress Inventory (DSI), the Inventory for Personality Diagnosis in Situations (IPS) and the 12-item General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-12). The participants were examined in regard to nationality. Age, gender, senior position and DSI types were considered as covariates. Results: There were some significant national differences. The senior position, gender and age alone had little or no influence on the results. In stress management, the German sample showed unfavorable values of DSI and IPS categories. Significantly more German bank employees (10%) were overstressed (DSI type II) compared to Ukrainian ones (3%). Significant differences in stress trigger, stress manifestation and stress stabilization of DSI, and in almost all IPS categories, were found between the bank employees of both countries. More specifically, 20% of the German sample and only 8.8% of the Ukrainian sample reported impaired mental health. Conclusions: Bank employees from Germany and Ukraine differed in their perception of stress and behavior in stressful situations, based on the DSI and IPS results; the Germans were shown to perform worse. This is reflected in the higher level of mental health impairment among the Germans, which is demonstrated by the GHQ-12 results. However, there is a need for workplace health promotion and preventive programs for both samples.