Marketers' Stress Levels Hinder Morale and Growth

Eighty percent of markers say they're understaffed and overloaded, but enterprisewide alignment enables different teams to communicate effectively and improve employee experience.

While innovation is essential to the evolution and longevity of any given business, marketers often struggle to balance their present responsibilities with the changing needs of the consumer. For many, this challenge significantly increases stress levels, compromising marketers' productivity and success.

Workfront's recent "Marketers Stress Report" explores how current pressures influence marketing teams' stress levels and how their emotional state impacts employee effectiveness and engagement. Conducted in partnership with MarketingProfs, the study polled 526 marketing professionals to determine how these individuals and their respective teams are coping with higher stress levels and angst in the workplace, as they continue to adhere to traditional work management methods.

The following statistics reflect the factors that contribute to marketers' stress and how it impacts employee performance:

  • On average, 25 percent of marketers are overly stressed or stressed to the max, with 36 percent submitting work late at least two times per week due to delayed approvals.
  • Marketers typically measure team success based on the success of the sales team (16 percent), lead count (14 percent), and quality of the work (13 percent).
  • Proving your value to people who don't understand what you do (55 percent), juggling all of your work to get it done within a 40-hour work week (51 percent), and people who mistakenly think they have great ideas (42 percent) are the top 3 reasons marketers dread their jobs.
  • Eighty percent of respondents agree that their teams are both understaffed and overloaded with work. Nonetheless, only 16 percent regret this career choice.
  • Leadership teams (30 percent) displayed the highest level of stress, followed by creative services (29 percent), operations, events, and others (28 percent), and digital marketing (26 percent). PR and communications (14 percent) reported the lowest stress levels.
  • Most marketers receive work requests via email (63 percent) and status meetings (38 percent). These methods are also the most common way for marketers to keep their boss in the loop (32 percent and 42 percent respectively).

Key takeaway: Because marketing has become such an integral element for brand success, it's easy to see why these teams-leaders, in particular-are increasingly stressed. "It's interesting to see that marketing leadership felt more stressed than PR or communications," says Joe Staples, CMO at Workfront. "It makes sense, though: Today's marketing leaders are now handling a vast array of different initiatives and campaigns, including branding, content, lead generation, media relations, and internal communications. With such a diverse workload, it's not surprising that they feel the most pressure to perform in the office."

Moving forward, companies should take an enterprisewide approach to marketing, since marketing touches every department and influences all aspects of the customer experience. Organizations should align their marketing efforts to achieve mutual goals that support engagement and productivity. Doing so can help strengthen marketing effectiveness while alleviating stress and boosting morale.