Work is one of the primary causes of stress in most people, and stress levels can be particularly high in startups. This may be because some people feel the weight of the company’s success on their ability to perform well. Non-defined job roles and titles in a new company can also contribute to high-stress levels. Stress, unfortunately, can result in high rates of absenteeism, job dissatisfaction and increased turnover, physical illness and more. These are all factors that can ultimately have negative consequences on your company culture and the success of your business. What’s the best way to control stress factors?
If you have determined that work-related stress at your startup is high, you may be wondering how to manage stress effectively for you and your employees. After all, the last thing you may want is a lack of stress management in the workplace to lead to the ultimate demise of your team and to sabotage your startup’s path to success. You should identify what the primary costs of stress are in your workplace, and you can employ some of these effective ways to moderate work-related stress in your business to improve the situation.
Create a Common Higher Goal
In many companies, the unfortunate reality is that those who are not working in a managerial position often feel as though their work is not important. This fosters ill-will and gives them the feeling they are simply spinning their wheels in a pointless job to earn a paycheck. As you might imagine, this breeds discontent and ultimately causes stress. If you are ready to learn how to control stress in the workplace, you must combat this problem head on by creating a common goal that all employees are working for. Each person should be able to clearly see his or her value in the organization and should see that his or her efforts contribute directly to the goal in a meaningful way.
Empower Your Employees With a Clear Organizational Structure
Some stress in the workplace may be generated through your organizational structure. When you have a complicated or fuzzy organizational structure, some employees may not feel empowered to make important decisions relevant to their tasks on their own. Constantly having to seek approval from the supervisor for routine activities can cause stress. In addition, seemingly overlapping structural lines can also result in stress. Talk to your employees about their concerns regarding organizational structure, and create a structure that results in the most effective workflow.
Review Your Compensation Structure
It is common for businesses to set up a compensation that rewards employees for their performance. This is particularly common in sales positions, but financial rewards are also common in other positions. This can cause individual stress in the employee as he or she feels the pressure to perform at peak levels constantly. In some cases, it breeds resentment and encourages verbal confrontations among employees who are competing head-to-head for the same type of compensation. An alternative to this type of structure may be to create a financial reward system that is based on team or department effort rather than on individual effort.
Nurture Your Employees With the Implementation of New Programs
Because stress is so common in many work environments, you may consider offering your employees compensation for stress at work in nurturing ways. For example, some companies will bring in a masseuse once a month to offer desk massage that targets the neck, shoulders, and back. Some will also incorporate nurture and wellness with team-building or socialization events, such as a happy hour mixer at a nearby venue or volunteering together as a group for a charity organization on a Saturday morning.
Leverage technology to protect and improve worker health
Healthy companies start with healthy employees. Thanks to new technology, companies are now able to monitor what their staff members are up to and how they are doing physically. They can determine whether their staff are tired or stressed. Are their employees getting enough exercise and sleep outside of work? Many companies are incorporating wearable technologies, asking their employees to wear Fitbit or Jawbone trackers, for example. Some companies track their staff member well-being as a KPI. However, you don’t want to go overboard with it, monitoring way too much and too serious can cause even a greater amount stress.
Prioritize Workplace Wellness
Another smart idea is to educate your employees about wellness and stress-relief. The reality is that many individuals can reduce their stress level on their own. For example, you can set up an educational program in your office that includes yoga instruction, mindfulness, relaxation breathing techniques and more. Employees may be able to do some basic stretches or deep breathing techniques in their work area when they are feeling particularly stressed out.
Stress may most commonly be associated with tension headaches and a rapid heartbeat or sweating, but it can lead to excessive tension, high blood pressure, weight gain, fatigue from sleepless nights and even heart issues and other serious conditions. Because stress levels can be particularly high in a new startup business, bosses should be aware of signs of stress in their employees. Stress management in the workplace should be a top priority.
There are many factors that can cause stress in your team members as well as your managers. You should identify the causes of stress in your office as a first step. Then, you can use some of these stress management ideas to improve the situation with long-lasting results.
Do you agree with these suggestions on how to control stress factors in startups? Do you have any additional advice? Share with us your ideas!