Stress Busters: Ways to keep you
and your employees stress free
On the job stress. It can take several forms, affecting well-being and profitability. According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), job stress is defined as the harmful responses that occur when the requirements of the job do not match the capabilities, resources or needs of the worker.
Stress can increase your risk for cardiovascular disease, psychological disorders, workplace injuries and other health problems. Some early warning signs include headaches, sleep disturbances, difficulty concentrating, job dissatisfaction and low morale.
The result of stress on your business is two-fold, meaning it affects you as well as your employees. Research conducted by NIOSH reveals that one-fourth of employees view their jobs as the number one cause of illnesses in their lives. Factors such as heavy workloads, conflicting or uncertain job responsibilities and job insecurity can impact your employees' ability to do their job. Early warning signs are increased absenteeism, tardiness and disability claims—all things that can reduce your company's productivity and competitiveness.
How can you prevent this stress? Smart, strategic action can reduce your employees' stress. Examples of this include defining workers' roles and responsibilities clearly, which puts them at ease about their role with the business; opening lines of communication by offering workers the chance to participate in decisions about their jobs; and providing opportunities for social interaction with coworkers through events such as attending sporting events, sponsoring a golf outing or holding a barbecue.
Now that you know the proper way to deal with everyone else's stress, how do you alleviate your own? Some ways to deal with stress on a daily basis is by exercising, eating healthy and getting a good night's sleep. Sounds too easy, but by adhering to the small consistent things in your life, you'll be able to better deal with the unexpected.
Another way to deal with on the job stress is by getting off the job. Whether it's a small one or two-day trip for golf, sightseeing or pure relaxation, or a week's vacation to get away from it all, take the time necessary to recharge so you can come back to the job mentally rested.
For more information on how to successfully deal with stress, call NIOSH's toll-free number, 1.800.35.NIOSH or visit its Web site at http://www.cdc.gov/niosh.
Early Warning Signs of Job Stress
- Sleep disturbances
- Difficulty in concentrating
- Short temper
- Upset stomach
- Job dissatisfaction
- Low morale
Three-fourths of employees believe the worker has more on-the-job stress than a generation ago.
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