A 2017 StressPulseSM Survey, released by ComPsych, found that 59 percent of their employee respondents reported dealing with high levels of stress. Unfortunately, workplace stress is on the rise, and it is impacting the productivity and overall health status of today’s employees. On the physical side, stress can lead to health complications such as heart disease, stroke, and other chronic illnesses. Business wise, your dealership stands to lose out on work productivity, which can result in less effective operations and lost revenue.
So, how can you identify if your employees are stressed, and develop ways to keep the stress levels low for your employees?
Take a look at our steps for creating a stress-free dealership that positively impacts you and your employees.
How to Identify If Your Employees are Stressed
Our current workplace culture upholds workers who give their all. Because of this “work above all else,” mentality, it can be challenging for workers to feel empowered enough to speak out about their stress. So, here are a few ways to read between the lines and tell if one or more of your employees are experiencing symptoms of stress and anxiety in your dealership.
- Decreasing productivity – A 2016 study from the same group found that one-third of employees lost an hour a day of productivity due to stress. If you are noticing a sharp decrease in revenue (that cannot be explained by any other causes), and are seeing that workers are unable to reach set goals, then it may be time to check to see if your employees are stressed and overworked.
- An increase in missed work or sick days used – A quarter of employees from this study said they took off three to six days of work per year due to stress. If you see a rise in sick days being taken or employees calling out the day of, then workplace-related pressure can be a contributing factor.
- Longer work hours – While less productivity can also mean that workers are experiencing stress, longer work hours can indicate the same. If employees feel they have to stay past work hours or take work home, this can be a precursor to stress or even reveal that it has already taken root.
Best Practices to Handle Workplace Stress in the Dealership
One of the best ways to create a stress-free workplace is to develop strategies that address the causes of stress in your dealership. Here are a few common causes of workplace stress and how you can prevent this from taking hold in your dealership.
Solution: Improve Job Designations
According to the 2016 StressPulse Survey mentioned above, 36 percent of workers are stressed about workloads. One of the ways to combat this is to get a sense for what your employees are actually doing. You may think that a marketer is only handling marketing tasks, but they may also be taking on duties from other departments of which you are not aware. So, send a survey that asks workers what all they are doing and how much they are working. This information will allow you to reassign tasks now knowing what is currently happening.
Managing Clashing Personalities
Solution: Set Boundaries and Foster a Culture of Collaboration
The 2016 StressPulse Survey also found that 31 percent of employees experience stress due to “people” issues associated with bosses and co-workers. There are a few ways you can address this at your dealership. First, you should always strive to foster a safe workplace. So, establish any hostile behaviors and language that will not be tolerated and enforce necessary disciplinary measures. Also, be sure that all managers receive training to better handle personnel issues and provide constructive feedback to workers. Lastly, foster a culture of teamwork and collaboration. Provide opportunities for socialization, and emphasize the principles and values all workers should abide by.
Handling Work and Personal Life
Solution: Provide Flexible Work Policies
Workers are not just handling work-related issues; they are increasingly trying to adjust their lives to handle the demands of home and work at the same time. The 2016 StressPulse survey revealed that almost 20 percent of respondents experienced stress as a result of juggling work and personal lives. The 2017 StressPulseSM survey then showed that 24 percent of respondents would stay at their current job if they were offered flexible work options. Offering flexible start-times, the opportunity to work at home certain days of the week, or allowing tactics like job sharing can make it easier for workers to more effectively juggle home and work life.
Stress is unavoidable. There is always going to be something at work or at home to cause anxiousness or stress. However, you can implement policies and methods to address work-related stressors better while also allowing your workers to be more productive and happier while they work. Policies that have the purpose of destressing your workplace are a win-win for your dealership and the employees who are a part of the team.