Building Employee Resilience in the Workplace
For many employees, the workplace presents a wide range of stressors that affect their lives inside and outside of the office. To combat these issues, organizations focus on building employee resilience and agility. If you aren’t familiar with the terminology, resilience refers to the ability of employees to “bounce back” from adversity in the workplace, while agility is a worker’s ability to respond quickly and effectively, adapting to these changes.
Common workplace stressors and the importance of employee resilience
A report from the American Institute of Stress (AIS) found 80% of workers feel stress on the job and approximately half claim they need help managing this occupational stress. Because such a high volume of employees are experiencing this pressure, it’s critical for organizational leadership to understand what stressors are most commonly plaguing the well-being of their workers and how to actively mitigate these issues moving forward.
Most common stressors in the workplace
- Negative organizational culture
- Poor management
- Heavy workload
- Unrealistic expectations
- Gaps in recognition or appreciation
- Lack of support
- Poor interpersonal relationships
- Organizational change
The impact of stressors on your workforce
Employers and managers must fully understand the gravity of workplace stressors on their employees. According to Colonial Life, 41% of workers reported being less productive due to workplace stress, 33% were less engaged and 15% admitted to looking for a new job. These troubling statistics are detrimental to the operational efficiency and retention rates of any organization.
More than the adverse effects on the business, these stressors aren’t limited to affecting employees at work. Unfortunately, workplace aggravation and inconveniences often bleed over into their personal life as well. The Anxiety and Depression Association of America reports 7 out of 10 adults believe workplace stress affects their personal life and the AIS supports this by finding 25% of workers said their job is the No. 1 source of stress in their life.
Leaders in the workplace: Their role in employee’s well-being and resiliency skills
Once organizational leaders have an understanding of the far-reaching effects of workplace stressors, it’s equally important to accept their role in focusing on their employee’s mental health while building an agile and resilient workforce. In fact, the Society for Human Resource Management reports 84% of workers blame bad managers for unnecessary stress in the workplace.
Staff who report higher levels of workplace stress often experience:
- Lower levels of job satisfaction
- Increased turnover
- Lower retention rates
- Increased absenteeism
- Lower morale and productivity
These negative experiences affect every facet of the business, like hiring, operational efficiency, and employee productivity. Ultimately, an unhappy workforce impacts the bottom line. To avoid poor business outcomes, leadership should focus on alleviating stress and building organizational and emotional resilience moving forward.
How to improve employee resilience and agility
As organizations continue to evolve, the need for workers with a resilient mindset will be essential for driving business growth and success.
Practices to build resilience and agility in employees
- Pay attention to employee mental health and physical well-being: Workers who are in good health are better equipped to perform at their highest ability. It’s critical to ensure your employees are eating healthy, staying hydrated and getting enough sleep. Not only did the National Library of Mental Health report people in good health are 3.5 times more likely to be resilient, but workers experiencing adequate sleep are 4.2 times more likely to overcome organizational challenges as well.
- Practice reframing a workplace problem as a challenge to overcome: Times of uncertainty often lead to a troubled mindset. However, it’s possible to mitigate these feelings by reframing potential stressors as challenges to overcome. When you encourage a positive, results-driven approach to obstacles, it helps your workforce perceive problems as possibilities for growth and they are more likely to break the cycle of stress.
- Foster a culture of social support: A supportive environment involves both leaders and co-workers. Ensuring employees have support from all angles can alleviate the weight of organizational issues and overwhelming feelings of stress. Implementing open lines of discussion, an open-door policy and opportunities to collaborate with co-workers can help create a culture of support in times of crisis.
- Offer learning and development opportunities: Learning and development (L&D) opportunities provide a key element in employee satisfaction, engagement, skill growth and productivity. However, L&D also helps build a resilient, flexible mindset that empowers your employees. This empowerment allows the workforce to feel energized and prepared to take on new challenges as they come.
Advanced solutions, such as a learning management system (LMS), can be a valuable tool to train employees and foster an agile and resilient mindset. With personalized learning paths and easily accessible content, an LMS can help workers hone their skills, manage chronic stress and actively improve their workplace resilience. Clear goals and expectations, along with gaining the right skills to do their jobs efficiently, eases the minds of employees and decreases feelings of being overwhelmed at work.
Moreover, cutting-edge software like Absorb LMS offers beneficial content partners to foster resilience in your workforce even more. Partners like Whil easily integrate with the platform to offer workplace mental health and wellness training to your employees. This program can adequately address your company’s largest healthcare cost-drivers — including stress, emotional intelligence, mental health and more. The culmination of advanced learning solutions and access to wellbeing training is an effective approach to building a capable, resilient and agile workforce long-term.
The benefits of improved resiliency in the workforce
An agile and resilient workforce is not only highly beneficial to the well-being of your workforce but is also crucial to the success and growth of your organization. The host of benefits workplace resilience provides include:
- Avoiding chronic stress and burnout
- Improving employees' ability to adapt
- Increasing overall productivity, job satisfaction and employee engagement
- Encouraging cooperation and collaboration amongst team members
- Improving workers' mental health and morale
Organizational change and work environment stressors are common issues employees may face, but when equipped with training to improve agility and resilience, these problems can be avoided. Workplace leaders are highly influential in their employee’s ability to adapt to changes and bounce back from adversity, so it’s vital to utilize technologies and best practices to build these skills for the overall benefit of the organization and your workforce.
Learn more about how Absorb LMS can help improve the resiliency of your workplace by requesting a demo now.