Museum professionals have to meet higher demands due to cuts - Museums Association

Museum professionals have to meet higher demands due to cuts

The Museums Journal’s survey reveals lack of support for staff
Nicola Sullivan
The majority (65%) of museum professionals said that management had placed greater demands on them as a result of funding cuts, according to research conducted by the Museums Journal.

The magazine's survey on workplace stress, which attracted 669 responses, also found that 44% were worried about job security and felt they had to justify their position and 50% took on more work because of redundancies.

And 66% of respondents said their salary did not reflect the level of responsibility they held.

Only 4% strongly agreed that their organisation had a support network in place to help staff manage stress, compared to 16% that strongly disagreed that this was the case.

Hilary Jennings, a freelance associate for the Happy Museum project, which aims to encourage museums to foster wellbeing and sustainability in their communities, said that support networks were all well and good but people needed to be given the time to use them. “When money is tight people have to spend all their time sitting at their desk and it’s very hard to get away to engage with support networks", said Jennings.

Typically support networks can include peer support, coaching, buddy systems and action-based learning. Employers can also offer flexible working and employee assistance programmes to help staff tackle stress.

Emma Mamo, the head of workplace wellbeing at Mind, said: “There are a number of measures employers can put in place to help staff manage stress, and they needn’t be expensive.

"Simple measures such as flexible working hours, regular catch-ups with managers and social activities can help staff get a better work-life balance and strengthen relationships between staff.

"Employers that invest in these approaches send a clear message to their staff that the organisation appreciates and values the wellbeing of every employee.”


Museums Journal's full report on stress

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