Across the UK stress in the workplace is on the rise and has been steadily rising over the last few years. While a certain amount of ‘job stress’ can be expected, stress in the workplace can be very costly as it affects the well-being of the individual as well as the performance of your organisation.
It is important that as a business owner or manager, that you are proactive about stress management in the workplace and we have outlined below the reasons why.
By understanding or being aware of what causes stress in the workplace it enables you to be proactive in managing this stress;
Recent research found that 33% of stress in the workplace was caused by external factors, which include things like work schedule, pace of work, job security, the commute to and from work, noise in the workplace and the number / nature of the customers or clients that employees are dealing with.
Meanwhile 67% of employees felt that stress in the workplace was caused by internal company factors such as a heavy workload or a difficult workload, working long hours, leadership or lack of leadership and the work environment.
Could these issues be causing stress for employees in your workplace?
How Can You Manage Stress Proactively In Your Workplace?
You could practice primary prevention by ensuring that all job roles, workplace designs and workflows are correct for your employees by checking that employees don’t feel they are burdened with too much work and have unrealistic deadlines for example.
You could implement on-going intervention stress management techniques by using employee surveys to determine levels and sources of stress in your workplace. These surveys then need to be reviewed and understood and intervention may be needed.
It is recommended that you also provide management training that teaches your line managers the causes and consequences of stress, the warning signs of excessive stress and how they can alleviate job related stress.
Another good idea for productively managing workplace stress is to establish employee assistance programs (also known as an EAP) which offers your employees with a one-stop shop for any issues or concerns they have but they don’t know where to turn or who to talk to.
It is also recommended that you improve communications with employees by clearly defining employees’ roles and their responsibilities along with your expectation of them in their job. Take the time to allow employees to be involved in decisions that affect their job roles so this reduces uncertainty about their jobs and future.
The effects of stress in the workplace can result in a decreased level of productivity, and increased amount of absenteeism, accidents in the workplace, a higher employee turnover and more. By being proactive about stress management in the workplace you are able to create a happier and healthier workplace for you and your team.
If you would like to have a discussion about anything we have outlined in this blog then please contact us at KJ HR Consulting.