Archives For Work (a job search site) did a survey, and weighed 21 factors that can create job stress. “Factors that weighed into stress levels  included work environment, job competitiveness, opportunity for  advancement and even perceived risk of unemployment.” The results?

Advertising account executive was rated the #9 most stressful job.

10. Real estate agent
9. Advertising account executive
8. Public relations officer
7. Highway patrol officer
6. Commercial pilot
5. Police officer
4. Surgeon
3. Taxi driver
2. Corporate executive
1. Firefighter

Yes, firefighters, surgeons, cops and pilots have stressful jobs. Bad stressful, not good stressful. People die and get maimed and horrifically scarred, physically and emotionally in these professions. That’s stress.

But advertising and public relations? C’mon. We’re here to help people, and sell stuff and change attitudes and perceptions and behaviors. Sure, it’s stressful. But nobody dies. Nobody gets maimed. There are no explosions, guns, fires, cancers, or crash landings. The scars are quite tiny by comparison. We get free pizza and make TV ads and we create art and have fun and laugh. And nobody dies.

I’ve  known tons of ad folks over these 20 years, and I’d say only a handful were stressed out to the point where it affected their life. Most took the stress as the fuel. The juice. The energy of the job. And many absolutely loved the juice. I sure do. It’s a daily, exciting affirmation of being alive.

Take that, musical instrument repairers. (They ranked 1st on the least stressful jobs.)

Every six weeks, we feature an artist’s work in our lobby, and have a reception for the artist. Here’s Heather Densen talking about her oil paintings. Coming up in April, Madison photographer Nick Berard.

FutureLab gives us a cool look at some trends in the workplace for 2010. Creative thinking, women, small businesses leading the way in the bounceback economy, employee happiness becoming a bigger currency, and personal brands will bump into traditional ones. It’ll be interesting to see what pans out.

(1) Organizations will embrace Design Thinking.

(2) Women will play a more important role in re-defining traditional notions of work.

(3) Small business owners will become the new stars of economic growth.

(4) “Happiness” will become a way to measure economic prosperity.

(5) Personal branding will become the buzzword of talented workers around the world.