"Employees who drink heavily or who abuse or are dependent on alcohol can undermine a workforce's overall health and productivity. To better understand the reasons behind employee abusive drinking and to develop more effective ways of preventing problem drinking in the workforce, researchers have developed a number of paradigms that guide their research. One such paradigm is the alienation/stress paradigm, which suggests that employee alcohol use may be a direct or indirect response to physical and psychosocial qualities of the work environment.
In the alcohol literature, work alienation and work stress typically have been treated as separate paradigms. The work-alienation paradigm focuses on work characteristics that lead to unenriched jobs, such as those in which workers use only minimal skills, have little job control (lack control over the pace of work or its content), and have little or no input into decisionmaking. In contrast, the work-stress paradigm emphasizes other potentially aversive work conditions, which are labeled "work stressors." Common work stressors include dangerous work conditions; noxious physical work environments (conditions that are too hot or cold, noisy, or dirty); interpersonal conflict with supervisors or coworkers; heavy workloads; unfair treatment regarding pay, benefits, and promotions; and job insecurity (threat of layoffs)."
-- National Institutes of Health