Original Research

A cross-cultural comparison of the stress experienced by high-level career women

Henriette S. van den Berg, Ebben S. van Zyl
SA Journal of Industrial Psychology | Vol 34, No 3 | a726 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajip.v34i3.726 | © 2008 Henriette S. van den Berg, Ebben S. van Zyl | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 10 July 2008 | Published: 18 November 2008

About the author(s)

Henriette S. van den Berg, University of the Free State, South Africa
Ebben S. van Zyl, University of the Free state, South Africa

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This study examines differences in the experience of work-related stress and of exposure to work-related stressors among South African career women of different ethnic groups. A sample of 732 women working in administrative, semi-professional, professional and managerial positions was involved. Analyses of covariance found signifcant differences in the level of stress reported by the different groups, with black women reporting the highest level of stress. Stressors pertaining to a lack of infrastructure and resources in the environment signifcantly contributed to the stress experienced by black women. All four groups reported discontent with their remuneration and fringe benefts.


South African career women; occupational stress; job-related stressors; conservation-of- resources theory; criterion group design


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