Recruitment News

Stress: How does it affect Your Business?

Only 3 in 10 employers believe mental illness warrants time off...



In a recent study by AXA PP Healthcare, it was revealed that 69% of employers do not believe that an employee suffering with a mental illness, deserves time off work. This includes stress induced depression and anxiety.


At first, these employers may seem ruthless and business minded; and to some extent that may be true… although the typical workplace culture may also be to blame.


In the workplace, employees are generally not aware that mental health should be actively monitored. They are more inclined to avoid communicating about mental health, as those who are struggling with it are easily stigmatised.

This influences workers hide their problems in fear of being labelled as incompetent or “different”.


This pressure to hide or avoid only causes more stress.


In order to combat stress, employers need to be made aware of the costs of stressed workers and companies must be educated on how to recognise and deal with stressed colleagues.


So how much does stress actually cost UK employers collectively?

An average of £1.24 billion per year, accumulated over 105 million days lost to stress.


If more employers realised these figures, then perhaps more would agree that their stressed employees deserve a little R&R.

In the long run, granting time off to decompress reaps many benefits. Employees are more loyal to their company, they feel more motivated to be productive and are generally shown to be happier with their work life.

Taking care of your employee’s mental health is basically a win-win for everyone.


But how can we effectively combat stress?

For a start, employers must be educated and willing to tackle mental health issues. Companies may develop a “stress policy” to make a conscious effort to build a positive attitude towards mental health. Ensuring that line managers are trained to identify the signs of a stressed colleague and offer the correct support.


Workers should also be pro-active in helping other colleagues, as well as keeping themselves stress-free. By creating an environment where employees can openly discuss their problems, without being judged, stress levels can be minimised.


Ultimately, it comes down to three main points. Offering the right help when needed, creating an understanding workplace culture and raising awareness on mental health.

Posted on 8th Apr 15

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