Stress in the Workplace
Workplace stress or occupational stress is becoming common place and, over the last 3 years, 45 million work days were lost due to stress, anxiety and depression. In one year alone it cost the economy at least 2.4 billion. What is the cause and is there a solution?
High or insufficient workloads
The last recession in the UK in 2008/2009 had an enormous effect on businesses. Many had to downsize and in turn this put heavy pressure on remaining staff to take on extra duties. Companies are still recovering but also there are quite a few that (though profits are up) have never replaced staff. This example is just one of the causes that have created high workloads for people. It places staff under immense pressure with unrealistic deadlines.
On the other end of the spectrum are; insufficient workloads. Many perhaps, have had to accept work they are over-qualified for. This can result a person feeling that their skills are under valued or under used.
Employer’s need to be mindful of their employee’s workload, they will only lose in the end if little/more pressure causes a reliable worker to leave.
Bullying or harassment.
Bullying or harassment in the workplace can have a massive effect on someone’s well-being and mental health. Employer’s need to have a strong management team. It is essential they are approachable and follow correct procedure if such complaints are made. Conflicts at work can happen and the responsibility is on the employer to make sure there’s equality and fairness in the handling of all disgruntlement.
A poor work environment can push stress levels to the limit. If it’s too hot or too cold, noisy, damp, uncomfortable seats or just physically exhausting. It is important that the employer ensures the surroundings suit all staffs needs as best as possible. Also employees should be kept informed by management of any significant changes to the business, creating ‘peace of mind’ for all.
Organise team-building events, days out, incentives or anything that can raise moral and eleviate stress for the employees. There may be heavy workloads, that are unavoidable in a busy work environment, but it could feel worth it to people if they receive rewards and they’ll certainly feel valued.