Although many employers might rate employee productivity above employee happiness, the opposite is often proved to be true: a happy employee is a productive one.
Recent studies show that the modern situation of increasing workloads show a corresponding increase in stress (CIPD employee well-being report), with a significant 25% increase in people taking time off sick when work just isn’t working.
How the stress shows itself
Over 60% of professionals felt that excessive workplace pressure had the direct effect of making them feel anxious or depressed, a situation which presents the pole opposite of happy, productive employees the gold standard of good, supportive work environments.
Shifting the balance
So what can employers offer?
- Support networks
Having appropriate support networks in place to support stress which generates from work or comes into work from domestic or personal situations is a great way for employers to demonstrate to employees that they are trying to understand and offer a reprieve from work place stresses.
Often it’s the case than management do value their employees and recognise their dedication, but when this recognition isn’t communicated appropriately or regularly, employees can inadvertently be left feeling unhappy and unacknowledged.
Connection is slightly different to engagement and communication, in that connection is about feeling part of the team in terms of value and validity.
Employee well-being is something which pro-active companies make the effort to invest in. This investment might include team-building and reward days, discounted gym memberships, and recreational areas in the office. Demonstrating to employees that their health and well-being is worth investing in is something which genuinely reflects how much they are valued.
Of course, any investment such as this has a cost which some companies might consider to be high, but implementing this type of employee investment as a way of offsetting the cost of re-hiring and training staff (particularly where there is a regular, high turnover of staff) can be a turning point for staff loyalty and retention.
On the whole, strategies to promote or improve employee engagement and levels of happiness need to be written into company policy and backed up with regular action on a genuine basis, not as lip-service or as one off gestures to off-set rumbles and niggles.
Finally, all of these considerations help to address that work-place stress, but what about those real-life issues which are wider than work but affect employees, such as bereavement and divorce? Offering access to services to address issues outside of the workplace reflects recognition that life can be difficult at times, and can go a long way towards helping relieve employee stress in ways which they will appreciate and remember as coming at a time when they need it the most. This builds positive working relationships and helps maintain presence and positivity both at work and towards work, a situation which makes the workplace a happier place to be for everyone.
Content provided by: Team Tactics