Dealing with Stress in the Workplace

 

In light of a number of clients having expressed concerns about how to deal with stress in the workplace, here at Accentuate HR we have decided to publicly offer our advice on how to deal with this issue.

With 2018 statistics from the Mental Health Foundation showing that 74 per cent of UK adults had felt so stressed that they felt overwhelmed or unable to cope that year, the issue of stress in the workplace is one that must not be ignored1. Even though stress is so widespread, from our experience, we still see that most employees are highly averse to discussing the issue of stress at work with either fellow colleagues or a line manager.

 

Before we look at how to combat stress, Accentuate HR believe it is important to be aware of the common causes of stress. According to an article by the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS) there are various key causes of stress. These range from things such as the inability to build positive relationships in the workplace, the ongoing demands of their job, support or lack thereof from managers as well as various other issues that can arise.

At Accentuate HR, we can help employers with regards to stress management in several ways as mentioned below.

  • Onboarding & job responsibilities – When an employee comes into a new job they may often be nervous about starting in their new role, so it is essential that your company has a structured and efficient onboarding process which welcomes the new employee to your organisation. Additionally, a clear outline of a person’s roles and responsibilities in a job description can help to clarify what is expected of an employee and is something that should be ideally handed to them on their first day.
  • Regular review & feedback – Regular meetings with line managers offer a great opportunity for employees to voice any concerns or struggles that they may be experiencing with their work. We strongly encourage regular meetings between line managers and members of their team to build and maintain morale and encourage dialogue.
  • Embrace flexible working arrangements – By trying to accommodate workers requests for flexibility, where appropriate, companies can help to alleviate the stress levels for their workers. For example, flexible working hours, telecommuting and job sharing may be viable options to consider for some companies. Indeed, many more companies are now allowing employees to work from home for one day per week to offer them what may be a far less stressful working environment.
  • Take regular breaks – Having plenty of holiday days remaining at the end of the year is not good and potentially in breach of working time regulations, if your staff are provided with the statutory minimum allowance. Instead, it would be wise for employees to take regular breaks from the office, ideally once per quarter in order to manage their stress levels and recuperate after busy periods at work. Furthermore, by taking a break from their job staff members often come back recharged, happier and far more productive than if they had never taken time off at all.

The matter of stress in the workplace is an issue that should be taken seriously by employees themselves as well as their managers. By keeping stress levels in check workers will be happier and more productive in the workplace, providing a better outcome for both themselves and their company as a whole.

 

Recognising the initial causes of stress is an essential first step in trying to alleviate stress within the workplace. Accentuate HR can help you to cope with workplace stress either on an individual basis or provide advice to your company workforce as a whole. For further information on how to deal with stress in the workplace please contact debbie@accentuatehr.co.uk. or call +44 (0) 7702 864 227

 


1https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/news/stressed-nation-74-uk-overwhelmed-or-unable-cope-some-point-past-year

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