How Can You Help Alleviate Stress In Your Employees?

According to a recent study by Perk box, 59% of the UK Experience work related stress. (See the full report here)…

  • Long working hours is the most common cause of work related stress (21%).

  • Higher earners (+£40,000) are more likely to experience work related stress (72%).

  • One in five (21%) UK workers experience moderate to high levels of work-related stress several times per week

  • The industry sector people are most likely to experience stress is sales.

Mental health is now being recognised as being as important as physical health, the right steps need to be taken in companies to deal with the stress that over 56% of us feel in the work place.

Perkbox recently reported that Sales is the number one sector people are most likely to experience stress. In sales, longer hours are usually a must to catch people outside of working hours to pick up as many deals as possible, however how is this affecting your mental health? Long working hours are the most common cause of work related stress (21%) and with demand on sales teams is getting higher with targets and work place competitiveness – it might be time for more employers to take a step back and take more time to think about the wellbeing of their team rather than all the focus being only on the success of their team.

Other causes of work place stress include being overworked, having unrealistic deadlines, making people feel rushed, under pressure or overwhelmed.  Alternatively, insufficient workloads can also cause stress, making people feel as though their skills are being underused.

Losing sleep is the biggest effect that stress has on British workers (65%) which can effect physical and mental wellbeing as well as resulting in lower energy and less engagement in the work place.  1 in 10 in the survey said that stress would cause them to take a sick day from work – resulting in a total loss of productivity for the day.  What’s even worse is up to 7% of people said they would look for a new job as a way to escape from the stress they are experiencing.

What steps can you take to alleviate stress?

Further to the Perk box report, they found that flexi-time (21%), allowing staff to work from home (18%) and organising social events (12%) are the most common things workers say their employers do to alleviate stress.  As an employer what measures do you put in place to support your teams mental health? With competition between companies to find the best talent, having support measures in place are as crucial as company culture, company benefits and package – especially when work place stress if affecting so many of us.

It’s not just support that needs to be offered, encouragement needs to be another element that is focussed on so people can work on their own mental health. Outside activities such as exercise, socialising and relaxing should not be overlooked, however people need the time to be able to do those things.  Putting in place things like flexible working and working from home will, where feasible, allow people the time to do things they want to do and not have to organise their lives around work.

Work place location is also another thing to think about when evaluating work place stress. Although work place stress showed to be fairly broad, people working in bigger cities were much more likely to be susceptible to higher stress levels, with Cardiff taking the number one spot (70% experience work place stress).  Cities tend to be stressful places regardless of what you do for a living, as there is a culture of working harder, faster and more efficiently. As an employer your responsibilities for the wellbeing of your employees will most definitely need more attention – try adding more support in the form of one to ones with your team to talk about how their feelings and the impact their work is having on their lives.

Not only will offering a great wellness programme be better for your employees but also better for you, your business and your company culture, saving you money and time in the long run.

We believe in finding great talent, and once you’ve found great talent you need to hold onto it.  Take the right steps to ensure the wellbeing of your employees is your number one priority – it’s an investment you won’t regret.