With increased stress levels at work, thanks to many factors including the much feared downturn, frustrated employees are looking cyber-ward to get even with their bosses. Akhil Nanda, a 26-year-old software engineer, begins his day by ‘beating his boss blue’. He says, "My boss begins his day by giving us some bad news about how the company is cutting costs. Since I can't smack his face in reality, I have downloaded a boss bashing game to do so.”
There are various online games that allow you to smack, whack and black your boss! Kill Your Boss (18,600 search results in google), Whack Your Boss (1,140,000 results; it has 46108 hits on one and close to 9,000 hits on another gaming website; it is available at many gaming portals) and Just Shut Up (35,500 search results) are few such options.
Shashank Dubey, financial advisor, who has been stapling his boss in Whack your Boss game says "such games prove to be great stress busters. And it's any day better than quitting or doing something violent."
Psychiatrist Samir Parikh says, "With recession, - the competition has become steeper and job security has gone for a six. The demand for such games that provide temporary comfort has also risen hugely”. While according to experts middle level professional are the once affected the most; number of people seeking professional help has gone up by 2-3 fold …and people resorting to gaming stress busters has also gone up by 50 per cent post recession.
... while bosses vent their spleen
Workplace stress is sky-high, shows a recent nationwide Assocham survey. Middle and high-ranking executives in Delhi and Mumbai are especially under pressure and are resorting to aggressive behaviour with sub-ordinates and peers.
“My boss is such a control freak these days that we are on the verge of resigning,” says Shanta Das, a brand manager working with a leading magazine. A rather dedicated bank executive Anirban Mehta is also turning grey with stress. “I receive at least 20 calls a day from my boss, screaming at me every time.” The people hardest hit are those in charge of generating revenue. Sanjay Sharma (name changed), north zone manager at a leading international bank, looks worn out these days.
“I haven’t slept properly this entire month,” says Sharma. “My boss threatens me with a pink slip every morning if he doesn’t see a 50 per cent profit before the day's closing.”
“Intensive recession has led to uncertainty and insecurity,” explains Dr Jitendra Nagpal, senior psychiatrist at Vimhans hospital. “Bosses are not only being edgy and finicky, but aggressive, too. I’ve been dealing with young executives who fear they have nowhere to go.”
“A lot of chronic sleeping disturbance cases are coming to me.” says Dr Rachna Singh of Artemis Health Institute. “Prominent cases are those who fear they might lose their job because their colleagues are being fired” she adds.