Being able to talk to someone who your employees look up to and speak to daily can cause a large impact on their work ethics. As an employee myself, throughout my working life in previous job roles, I’ve struggled with feeling like I can speak to my employer openly. It’s easy to fear repercussions from expressing discomfort with workload or issues with mental health. Being open as an employer and showing that you are there for your staff reduces a lot of stress and worry.
For an employer, it can be incredibly frustrating if it feels like staff are not performing at the expected standard, especially if it’s causing issues within the workplace. But it’s important to keep an open mind and investigate what is causing poor performance, and whether the employee can be supported. Not everyone feels comfortable opening up about their issues mentally, but reassurance helps a lot. Ask employees regularly how they are feeling mentally, about the workload, and overall how they are. Even letting an employee know that you notice their struggle can encourage them to speak up or feel more relaxed within the workplace.
There may be a lot of work that needs to be done but realistically it’s not going to be done correctly if your staff are struggling. Focus on what is strategically important and balance workload out between staff. I’ve personally noticed that employers tend to depend on their employees who will constantly say yes to a shift because they need the money or feel bad saying no. This is understandable but it can cause a massive strain on their mental state and even their personal life.
Speak to your employees about which hours suit them best and whether it’s having the same schedule or it being different each shift. It will give you an understanding as to what hours will make them more efficient and productive. Letting your employees work where they are comfortable can help a lot too. For example in retail; say your employee is incredible in one department but struggles/stressed in another, don’t throw them in the deep end. Speak to them as to how they feel about it and what support they need. Or another example for office-based work; is if your employee has options to be able to work from home/somewhere they feel more comfortable or go into the office. Speak to them about it, find out what is more efficient for them to get the work done or which will reduce their workplace stress.
Overall as an employer, it is important to know your employees and make sure they are as comfortable and stable as possible. Doing so will increase workload efficiency and the environment you work in. Remember your employees are all different and handle things differently. One person’s strength may be different from another’s weakness.
This is a major point. Whether you speak to another employee or your employer, it’s nice to get it off your chest. Letting it build up and fester will only harm you more in the long term.
Feeling like this is normal and, as hard as it is, don’t let it bring you down (easier said than done, right?). But there are ways to go around not feeling like this and things in place to help you.
Whether it’s talking about it or doing things differently. Don’t be afraid to try a new way to overcome challenges and obstacles.
Make sure to take the time off that you need, don’t be afraid to say no to overtime even if you may need that extra money. Your mental wellbeing is more important. Getting enough sleep, eating properly, and taking extra steps to alleviate mental health like making time for relaxing, spending time with friends/family will help you a lot.
Learn to recognise the key signs of burn-out/mental health. This is normal so don’t feel like you are in the wrong for feeling this way. It’s more serious than you may think it is. Feeling mentally down can keep you from spending time with family or doing things that you love, it can even increase the risk for health issues. Figure out what it is that is making you feel this way, trying to do too much alone can drag you down. Think about what immediate changes you can make to stop feeling this way whether it be talking about it, cutting down workload/hours, or finding a distraction in something you love. You can take back control of your stress. Don’t let it consume you, set boundaries, and love yourself.