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How managers can reduce stress in the workplace

Want to know how to reduce workplace stress? It’s all about recognising and minimising the signs and symptoms of stress. The first step is to be able to identify stress in the workplace. Then, it’s down to employers and managers to make changes to tackle it. 

Carry out a stress risk assessment

If you’re wondering how to reduce workplace stress, a workplace stress risk assessment will be your best friend. They’ll help you see any potential causes of stress, so you can fix them. Getting a solid stress risk assessment in place should mean you’ll see fewer instances of stress at work. Not only will it keep you covered in line with Health & Safety laws, but it’ll help you build a happier and more productive team. Everyone loves a win-win!

It doesn’t stop there though. To make a difference, it’s the next steps that really matter. For example, if you put in the stress risk assessment that you’ll look into supporting workers by considering flexible working hours, then it’s important you act on it. Then, if you feel like everything is going to plan, great! Any changes at work? It’s then time to review regularly to keep up to date. So, support your team when they need it. After all, they’re helping your business become bigger and better.

Communicate with your employees

Build a culture where an open-door policy between managers and staff is embraced. It’s a fantastic way to develop positive relationships in the workplace where stress can be openly talked about with no judgement. Or, you could always put in regular one-on-ones with your team – another way to give them a chance to chat about any concerns they have.

Let your staff know you’ve got their back. Regular communication makes them feel heard, so let’s get started.

Keep the workload manageable

High workloads? A big no-no. They actually account for 44% of stress or depression at work, so it’s essential to make workloads manageable. Have realistic deadlines and talk about how many hours an employee should have.

Want a productive work environment that tackles stress at the core? This is one way to start. Helping your staff become comfortable with their workload is a great way to build a positive work culture.

Set clear, achievable goals for your employees

Goals should be clear and achievable. Because if an employee starts a task and hasn’t been briefed properly, it can cause stress when they’re not entirely sure what they need to do.

So how do you make sure you do this? Well, there are task management tools you could offer staff to support them, or you can also let them know you’re available if they need to discuss any tasks with you. This way, your employees will feel confident to ask questions before and during the tasks.

It’s also worth asking your employees if they feel they’ve had proper training in the areas they work in. If they say no, you can fill in the gaps so they can feel more confident in their abilities. Investing in your people’s development only shows them how much you value their contribution – leading to a greater sense of purpose at work.

Take the guesswork away when it comes to your people’s main objectives. If they know exactly what their targets are, they can create a path for themselves on how to get there, whether it’s a revenue target or a specific role within the company. Regular discussions can clear this up, so everyone knows what they’re aiming for.

Focus on employee wellbeing

Making employee wellbeing a priority in your business  will go leaps and bounds in building a positive working environment with an engaged workforce. And there are many ways you can contribute to this.

Try appointing wellbeing champions who can be there for staff who need support, or if they want to give suggestions about improving wellbeing in their workplace.

An Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) can also be extremely useful. If your staff feel they need to speak to a confidential counsellor outside of work, they can. And they cover a huge range of issues. Grief? Stress? Money troubles? EAPs show staff you care about their wellbeing.

Flexibility can be key to an employee’s wellbeing. A more flexible working environment gives staff more time to do things like exercise or ‘life admin’ tasks in and around work. It can also help take the stress off parents who need to think about childcare. Remote working and flexible working hours can really benefit your staff.

Make supporting your team a habit

Reducing stress isn’t just a one-time deal. The process is going to need constant attention – from identifying signs of stress to creating a risk assessment and then acting on how to reduce workplace stress. The support you give when it comes to communicating with employees, managing workloads, setting goals, and focusing on wellbeing all contribute to minimising stress in the workplace and ultimately building a happy workforce and a successful business.