Where does stress come from?
Before you can help manage stress in your office, it's important to understand where it comes from.
Some will come from outside your office. As much as 75% of the US population is worried about their finances (a number that's closer to 95%, most likely). Or it could be family issues, like a struggling marriage or caring for aging parents.
17 percent of the workforce at any given time is providing care for an aging person and about half of them also have children under 18 at home.
Lurking inside your office is a whole other set of stress factors. 80% of employees are stressed out by work.
According to the Willis Towers Watson survey, employees' top three sources of workplace stress are: lack of support/inadequate staffing, low pay or low increases in pay, and unclear job expectations.
Sounds about right.
But when asked to name their employees' top sources of stress, the employers' top three were a bit different.
They guessed lack of work/life balance to be number one, inadequate staffing two (they got that one right), then technologies that expand availability outside work hours like notebooks and mobile devices.
The final criteria was the lowest ranked by the employees.
It's probably fair to say there's a disconnect in most offices about stress. But there's absolutely a connection. Employees feel like they're being asked to do too much, and/or aren't clear of what success looks like, leading to long hours and worries that spill over into the rest of their lives.
What can you do about it?
Stress from outside the office is quickly becoming the biggest threat to productivity inside the office. Here's why, and how to help employees fight it.