10 of the most stressful jobs in SA
Whether you have a well-established career or looking for new opportunities and jobs on Job Mail, we wanted to give you the lowdown on some of the most stressful jobs in South Africa. Are you in one of these careers? Tell us about it in the comment section below!
Researching the most stressful jobs
Employment, for most people, is necessary to sustain their financial well-being. However, a lot of jobs can be very stressful. In some instances the stress levels that come along with a particular job are so overwhelming that they have a detrimental effect on an individual’s health and well-being.
According to research carried out by Mariska van Aswegen, a spokesperson for Pharma Dynamics, a pharmaceutical firm that specialises in central nervous system medication for the treatment of depression and anxiety, while not all jobs appear stressful to an observing outsider it is often difficult to truly assess the stress levels associated with jobs you are not actively engaged in.
Cosy, white collar office jobs that are well paying, may appear to be stress free but the reality is these jobs come with a lot of responsibilities and expectations. These jobs contain a lot of stress triggers such as mental demands, deadline, and an enormous amount of travelling and dealing with conflict.
All of these triggers add an enormous amount of pressure on people engaged in these jobs. In fact certain people even have to take some form of medication to alleviate stress levels associated with their jobs.
10 Most Stressful Jobs in SA
Here is a list of the ten most stressful jobs in South Africa:
Medical jobs are one of the most stressful jobs and they come with a lot of responsibilities. As a doctor you have to take on a lot of professional and personal responsibility while dealing with the health and lives of other people.
Generally speaking it is not an easy thing to deal with sick people, it becomes even more difficult when you constantly have to make quick, life changing decisions while working long hours under psychological pressure from the families of the sick. From a salary perspective, these medical jobs in South Africa has a salary expectation from anywhere between R476 000 and R616 000 per annum.
There is no surprise that CEO jobs appear on the list of some of the stressful jobs in South Africa. From a global perspective we only need to look at the work schedules of top CEO’s to realize how stressful these jobs are.
CEO’s such as Elon Musk have reported to have worked for 100 hours per week while heading PayPal. The stress does not come from the long working hours alone, as a CEO there is a lot of pressure to deliver results to investors and to ensure the company continues running competitively and has the financial ability to pay all its employees on a monthly basis.
This pressure certainly puts a lot of stress on CEOs. The biggest problem is that, as a CEO you have no peer to turn to when you are facing problems, easily sliding onto the list of the most stressful jobs in South Africa.
With CEO jobs in South Africa you can expect to earn anything up to a R49 million yearly base salary depending on which company you head and its profitability
Working as a Pilot
While being a pilot may seem like a glamourous and high paying position, flying a 75 to over 450 tonne aeroplane at 30 000- 40 000 feet above sea level is not easy. Although much of the job is automated, mistakes you make while landing or taking off can cost lives.
This is a huge burden for anyone to carry and adds to the stress levels of the job. Travelling and being away from home for much of the year does not make pilot jobs any less stressful. A commercial pilot in South Africa can expect to earn an average of R360 000 per year.
Interested in pursuing this career? Read our “How to become a Pilot in SA” to learn more about what you will need to be successful.
SAPS jobs are generally high risk jobs. Having a job as a police officer in South Africa makes you the constant target of a lot of criminals. You have to be constantly on your toes and ready to defend yourself and the public against criminal threats. The stress levels of saps jobs are worsened by the fact that as a police officer your actions are under constant scrutiny. You must act with careful consideration that your actions will be put under the microscope- you must be able to justify your arrests in any acts of aggression you meet.
The relatively low annual pay of between R98 000 and R271 000 does not make the job any less stressful, but if you feel that public service is your calling, you can learn more by reading our “SAPS careers: How to become a Police Officer in SA” post on the blog.
C Level Executives
Much like CEOs other C-Level Executives go through a lot of emotional, and mental stress. There is a lot of pressure to deliver results regularly and as a top executive you carry a lot of responsibilities and obligations.
Employees generally look up to you for guidance. While this amount of recognition can be fulfilling it does not do well to alleviate your stress levels, if anything this adds to stress triggers that make your life more difficult. As an executive director in South Africa you can expect to earn an average of R880 000 per year.
If you thought being a singer was easy and relatively stress-free you thought wrong. Being a singer is very stressful and if you are an unknown, you have to face the financial stress of not being able to sustain yourself financially.
If you are lucky enough to get a lot of shows and grow a substantial fan base the stress comes in the form of making performances under a tight schedule. As a musician you do not have a fixed monthly salary and you can expect to earn anything from a few thousands to a few millions depending on how in demand your music is.
Browsing for new opportunities and jobs on Job Mail? Why not create your Job Mail Job Alerts and get informed of the latest vacancies in your industry and area.
Much like Doctors, nurses face a lot of work stress from dealing with sick patients under high pressured conditions and working very long hours. Nursing jobs generally attract a yearly salary of between R147 000 to R314 000.
Interested in these medical jobs on Job Mail? Learn more about the career by checking out our Nursing Jobs Blog Tag on the Job Mail Blog.
Also making the list of the most stressful jobs, working as a film director you can expect to work long, irregular and unsociable hours. Sometimes movie production will be slower than other days as you have to deal with unknown variables on a regular basis. Additionally you will have to work under strict deadlines, budget concerns and balancing different personalities and responsibilities in order to deliver on your production.
There is a lot of potential to earn good money as a film director, the average yearly wage running between R98 000 and R616 000.
Agricultural jobs are known for being physically taxing. The physicality of agriculture jobs adds a certain risk element of the jobs. More often than not the work conditions of these jobs are not very stimulating, mentally challenging or rewarding (and offers little room for flexibility).
All these factors add to the stressfulness of agriculture jobs. Farmers’ average pay probably adds to the stress factor of agricultural work as they can expect to earn around R260 000 per year.
Want to learn more about the career opportunities in agriculture? Read the posts under our Agricultural Job Vacancies Blog Tag on the Job Mail blog.
Beauty jobs can be quite stressful. As a hair stylist you are likely to work in an environment where you will be forced to communicate with a lot of people. You must have great communication skills and the flexibility to interact with people of differing temperaments.
Unfortunately for most this, along with the tight schedules a lot of professionals, creates a highly stressful work environment. For all the stress of this job, hair stylists earn between R25 632 and R120 000 per year.