Preventing Work Stress for employees and managers
Work stress has been a much-discussed phenomenon for some time now. The fact that there exists both a national and international ‘Week of Work Stress’ says enough! But do you know when your own stress level is (too) high? Or how you, as employee or manager, can take preventive actions towards negative energy at work? 2DAYSMOOD helps organizations world-wide daily, by strengthening their work happiness and decreasing work stress. We would gladly like to share with you our knowledge on less work stress and more employee happiness through the tips below.
10 Tips for less work stress
1. Try to be a positive role model in your work environment. Moods are contagious, so when you stay calm in a stressful situation, colleagues will be able to easily follow your example. (Or will you follow the example of a colleague?)
2. Look for teamwork! When you feel work pressure and stress are rising, try to engage with colleagues that stimulate, motivate and support you with the completion of your tasks.
3. Avoid unrealistic deadlines. Both employees and managers should be able to give their input on schedules, priorities, and the related work pressure. If you engage the entire team in the process, they will also be engaged in reaching their deadlines.
4. Create awareness on employee satisfaction. By making it OK within the team to discuss and analyze moods and satisfaction, you are opening the door to a sustainable and positive working climate. Do not wait until the stress level is (too) high. Instead, talk regularly to your team about work pressure, work happiness, and employee satisfaction. Both research and practice show that happy and satisfied employees lead to less burn-outs and sick leave.
5. Listen to music. Music can be used in many situations to decrease stress and create a relaxed atmosphere. Calm music without vocals and a pleasant, repeated melody, can help you relax. Do you like classic, blues, or maybe (a little less calm) techno? A playlist that has a set time duration can be a great way to take a break at the right moments. Another way to build a pleasant mood in the team is by creating a (guilty pleasure) playlist with your colleagues. Make sure to only do this when everyone is in the right mood for it and when they don’t have tasks that must be completed in a quiet environment.
6. Communicate face-to-face. Schedule in moments to discuss the work atmosphere and points of improvement with your team. Try to pinpoint concrete issues that cause work pressure or stress. Having a conversation (especially one-on-one) remains the most valuable method that brings about positive change. So, keep showing a genuine interest in the work and private life of your colleagues. Do you occasionally ask colleagues in the office: How do you feel at work today?
7. Keep setting goals. Constantly keeping your goals at the forefront of your mind and initiating actions to reach them, makes you more involved in your work. By doing so, you will become less receptive to negative feelings that come with sudden difficult tasks. Combine long term goals with short term goals, so you can live in the moment and feel appreciation for your own work.
8. Make sure expectations are clear (and live up to them!). Which expectations do you, your colleagues, and managers have regarding the work projects? Define clear roles, responsibilities, and goals per employee. Discuss how these are aligned with the values as well. Live up to expectations or communicate in time when they are not attainable! Nothing is more harmful and stressful than broken promises.
9. Facilitate progress and development. Sometimes stress emerges because people don’t have the right know-how or resources that help them successfully complete their tasks. It is important to invest in training and education, so employees have the knowledge and skills to perform in their job. When you are facing a sudden workload, think about implementing smart technologies, practical tools, or more human capital.
10. Reward and show appreciation.Make sure to at least verbally reward good work. Celebrating the successes of your colleagues can give another boost to work happiness. It is sensible to alternate stressful periods that include strict deadlines, with calm periods that involve a lower workload. It is advised to seek out more relaxation in order to recover, during and after work.
Monitoring work stress?
Would you like more information on how to detect and monitor the negative emotions of employees? Request a demo of the fun and innovative 15 second survey from 2DAYSMOOD or download our brochure here.