11 Apr 2013

Stress costs money, but fixing it is free!

Hamlet said; “Nothing is good or bad… Only thinking makes it so.” Think back to the last time something didn’t go quite right in your working day. Maybe a client sent you notice that they were cancelling their services with you, or a large deal fell through that you were really banking on. Maybe it was simply an avalanche of work that appeared out of nowhere and threatened to suffocate you under the mass. In Australia, workplace stress costs businesses $10.1 Billion a year via stress related presenteeism and absenteeism. One way to handle stress is to reduce the number of negatively perceived incidences in a day.This can simply be done by changing the way you think. By changing the way you think about something, you can change the way you feel and behave. For instance – if you have a big presentation coming up and you are dreading it, you may feel nervous and fearful and therefore you may behave in a way that makes you appear non convincing and inexperienced.  If however you are looking forward to it, your feelings of excitement may translate to confident, energetic behaviour, leading to a successful presentation. Businesses can help cultivate a reduced stress work environment by making physical changes such as encouraging flexible working, but even small things like a coffee machine and TVs in break out areas can make a difference. Of course, the most value will be derived if you can manage to employ the right type of people with the right type of attitude in the first place. Encourage those around you and lead by example by challenging stressful situations with a different perspective; because if you can influence the way people think, you can influence their feelings, behaviours and ultimately – outcomes. The end result is a reduction of stress, happier employees and lower absenteeism. A win for all!