Effects of a stress management intervention program on self-perceived depression, anxiety, and stress among hotel employees: A quasi-experimental study

Cindy Biding, Rusli Bin Nordin

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4 Citations (Scopus)


Employees with high levels of distress are subject to greater health risks, productivity loss, low morale, and increased costs compared to those with normal distress levels. To address this, a work-site stress management intervention program (SMIP) must be able to reduce distress levels and engage individuals so that ultimately employees' psychosocial well-being is improved and the organisation's productivity increases. In this quasi-experimental study, our primary objective was to implement and evaluate the effects of a SMIP among hotel employees. A total of 126 hotel employees from two hotels (A & B) were assigned to the experimental group (Hotel A) (n = 68) and control group (Hotel B) (n = 58), respectively. The experimental group was given the SMIP whilst the control group was given a talk on stress management only. The SMIP consisted of three sessions: (a) deep breathing and progressive muscular relaxation exercises; (b) cognitive behavioral training (CBT) covering communication & interpersonal skills; and (c) emotional intelligence at work, goal setting and changing dysfunctional thought patterns. A validated Malay short version of the Depression, Anxiety, Stress Scales (DASS21) was self-administered before (Pre) and after (Post 1 and Post 2) each intervention for both experimental and control groups. Time and group interaction effects were calculated using a mixed within-between subjects ANOVA analysis. There were significant interactions between intervention program type and time, for stress, anxiety and depression. There were substantial main effects for time for the intervention group but not for the control for stress, anxiety and depression. There were no significant reductions in stress, anxiety and depression scores in the control group at post 1 and 2. The main effects comparing the two types of intervention were significant for anxiety but not for stress and depression. This suggests that there was no difference in the effectiveness of the two types of intervention with respect to reducing stress and depression levels but the SMIP was effective in the reduction of anxiety levels among hotel employees. These findings suggest that the SMIP is effective in reducing the anxiety levels, but not stress and depression levels, among hotel employees. The limitations, recommendations needed for future research and implications conclude the article.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPsychosocial Factors at Work in the Asia Pacific
EditorsMaureen F. Dollard, Akihito Shimazu, Rusli Bin Nordin, Paula Brough, Michelle R. Tuckey
Place of PublicationDordrecht, Netherlands
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)9789401789752
ISBN (Print)9401789746, 9789401789745
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2014


  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Hotel employees
  • Stress
  • Stress management intervention program

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