As we know, stress can cause a myriad of body-wide health concerns. The pressure from work can increase the likelihood of these concerns, and even those at the top of companies aren’t immune, as a recent public collapse has shown.
BMW boss, Harald Krueger collapsed at the Fankfurt motor show, while delivering a speech onstage. He is reportedly recovering well, but it is unknown what caused him to collapse. It is thought it may have been some form of bug picked up on his international trips.
Even if Mr. Krueger ‘s collapse was not directly caused by stress, there must have been a lot of pressure for him to go onstage and do his bit, despite feeling ill, and this would have made things much worse for him. Of course, this pressure may have come from Mr. Krueger himself.
Whether he would have been better in terms of health if he hadn’t gone onstage, we don’t know. However, it would have been better for him to not be onstage when his illness struck.
Being a new chief executive, he no doubt felt the pressure to make an appearance on stage as cancelling would have looked bad.
To be under such pressure to make an appearance when so ill isn’t good for the health, and possibly made Mr. Krueger worse.
Being at the head of a company comes with a need to have a good, strong reputation, and it is rare for companies to admit to the ill health of their CEOs, especially if it is a mental health issue, like stress or depression, as the companies fear triggering the big, overwhelming and lingering taboo about mental illness.
Hopefully companies will begin to understand that all employees are vulnerable to stress and need support, and just because CEOs are at the top of a company, they are not immune to the effects that plague all other forms of worker, and need support and aid with stress management.