Surrey Business News
Key to Reducing Workplace Stress is Recognizing it
It’s been well-documented and fairly well reported that ‘workplace-overwhelm’ is costing Canadian businesses a bundle.
Some of the more reliable surveys indicate that 4 out of 5 Canadian employees feel overwhelmed at work.
It’s worth noting, all stress isn’t bad.
Certain kinds of stress can be motivating, encouraging people to push to their greatest level of productivity.
However, figures show stress at work has gone beyond the tipping point, costing companies to the tune of $300 billion annually in the US.
While figures for Canada aren’t readily available, mental health problems, of which stress, anxiety and depression are some, are costing Canadian businesses $20 billion a year.
About 1 in 4 employees report leaving work because of the stress load. In addition, more than half of employees surveyed in a 2016 report, indicated they had called in sick due to stress, and 60-80% had workplace accidents due to stress-related distractions or sleepiness.
What can you do about it?
First of all, encourage employees to note when it’s happening for them. Signs include fatigue, headaches, irritability and inability to sleep.
If overwhelm is leading to burnout, have employees report it to a supervisor, and let them know they are safe in doing so.
Encourage self-care, including exercise, good eating behaviours, proper boundary setting, getting sleep, and managing stress through techniques such as yoga, mindfulness, tai chi, or a myriad other approaches. A combination of yoga and mindfulness alone reduced stress at Aetna, a US health provider, by 28%.
Perhaps the most critical action is to recognize when it’s happening. Letting staff know you care, and want to help them through it will reduce their overwhelm greatly.
Make sure you’re good to yourself as well. You want to model the kinds of self-care you’d like to see in your staff.