Stress is no new phenomenon, but became one of the leading causes of personnel turnover and increasing production cost in the twentieth century. A very large amount of studies have done on stress to create a deeper understanding of the causes, as well as the effects of stress. The purpose of this study therefore is to gain knowledge as to the nature and scope of stress experienced by members of the South African Police Service Dog unit in Durban. The South African Police Service have undergone 'n total change and this change, as any other, has not gone without problems. It is natural human nature to avoid change, and this has led to the fact that certain members have found the changes quite easy to adapt to, but others have not adapted to the new ways. Said changes have also taken place in the Dog unit in Durban. This specialized unit within the South African Police Service supply a service which is of cardinal importance and it is therefore necessary to take note of the stress experienced by members of this unit. The study not only focused on how the members experience stress, but also on the causes and effects of said experience. Furthermore, special attention was given to certain personality traits which members have displayed. The literature study preceding the results will help to understand and relate the results. The number of respondents experiencing high to very high levels of stress are greater than those experiencing normal levels of stress. This is due to work related aspects such as job characteristics inherent to the job, remuneration, added benefits, and personnel policy as well as career opportunities. Furthermore, specific personality traits / characteristics were identified which identify respondents experiencing very high levels of stress. Knowledge gained regarding the levels of stress experienced by members, as well as the nature and scope of stress, can be used to produce aids to assist in the recruitment of members for the unit. It is clear that members wanting to work in the unit needs to be emotionally, psychologically and physically well and it is clear that results from this study can further the process to ensure this. Lastly, due to the results of this study, specialized stress management workshops can be developed for the unit.
Thesis (MCom (Human Resources Management))--University of Pretoria, 2004.