As an individual, I’d like to think I’m relatively good at managing stress in my professional life. I always keep a calm demeanour, set realistic deadlines, never let my negative emotions spread to employees and never allow myself to get buried under so much work that I find myself incapable of even attempting to make my way through that work.
In my personal life, I’m probably the worst person you can imagine for managing stress. Not because I find myself constantly stressed out, but because whenever something stressful does come my way that needs attention, I find myself wanting to postpone tackling the issue for as long as I possibly can until I have no other option but to tackle the issue.
The difference between managing stress successfully and unsuccessfully in my professional and personal life is quite simply because I plan and prepare my professional life whereas my personal life, not so much. Stress occurs naturally in the workplace and if it isn’t managed properly, it can have huge impacts on employee happiness, health and performance.
At work, almost all of the time I feel challenged. This is when my performance is at its peak and the work just flows naturally. Occasionally there are those slower days in which I struggle to keep awake and unless I take regular short breaks, my work performance will drop to it’s lowest. If I’m ever given too much work to handle or a job I’m incapable of handling on my own (due to lack of experience/knowledge) I don’t just keep my head down and get on with it, I address my concerns to my superiors and together we collaborate on how we’ll manage the workload. Most of the time I gain invaluable experience from the situation and add to my set of skills.
This article lists 25 ways a business could implement to try and reduce stress in the workplace. At Jepson Holt, we’ve already adopted most of the ideas in that list (including office yoga once a week) and I’d like to think our office environment is relatively stress-free (to a realistic extent). However, it would be interesting to try additional ways to reduce office stress further that we aren’t currently doing. I’d recommend “Weekly Stress Busters” (yoga in our case), “Clear Communication” and “Walking Groups” (which for us is just walking to Sainsbury’s for lunch, but it really does make a difference!).
Stress naturally occurs in the workplace. When left unchecked, it can wreak havoc on employee health and productivity.