How Employers Can Reduce Stress at the Workplace
Workplace stress adversely affects the physical and emotional well-being of the employees and consequently hampers the productivity of the organization. Employees should feel happy about coming to work every day and feel valued for their contribution. Hence, the employers should strive towards creating positive and mentally healthy workplaces.
First of all, the employers must identify the triggers that cause stress. The most common factors that put pressure on employees are excess workload, overwhelming performance expectations, lack of clarity of roles and conflicts with managers/team members. The first two causes can be easily taken care of by setting work goals and Key Responsibility Areas (KRAs) after mutual discussion with the employees. This activity will make employees an equal participant in goal setting. The other two causes can be resolved by defining the organizational hierarchy and conducting team building activities. The senior management can also play a crucial role in stress mitigation of employees by keeping an open mind and refrain from forcing their views on them.
There are also several other useful strategies to alleviate employee burnout and replenish the negative energy in the work-space with positive vibes. I have helped companies design and change their work place which have given results. For instance, the workplace should have a well-designed ventilation system to allow fresh air and light movements and radiate positive vibrations.
The relaxation zones are another solution to reduce workplace stress. The offices should have dedicated break rooms, rest lounges, entertainment zones and cafeterias. Employees can take short breaks and let their guards down for some time to re-focus on their work.
A resilience room is a relatively new design concept that is emerging in employee well-being and engagement. This room acts like a personal space where employees can unwind by either sitting or even lying calmly. It is a quiet place where they can listen to music, think clearly, concentrate easily or feel better without any internal or external noise disturbances.
Wellness programs such as free gym memberships, yoga sessions, spa coupons and meditation classes can also enable employees to escape from their daily work stress. If the workplace is large, then some space can be converted into wellness zones so that employees can access all facilities from the comfort of the office. If possible, it would also be a good idea to build crèches, day care Centre’s or feeding rooms in the office premises for working parents. Plan a surprise day out, picnics or movie dates to get a few hours away during office time.
Here are different ways to reduce stress among employees:
- Identify the triggers that cause stress and address them promptly.
- Ensure a proper ventilation system in the office for natural air and light.
- Create relaxation lounges in the office.
- Design a resilience room to help employees work without interruptions.
- Implement wellness programs in the organization.
All these steps will bring a visible transformation in the workplace and employees. The companies which implement these changes will also witness a remarkable change in their production and sales.
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