The consequences of workplace stress are so serious and pervasive that the World Health Organisation has called stress the health epidemic of the 21st century. Workplace stress results in millions of lost work days each year and seriously impacts the health of employees and the organisation. So, how can we improve employee resilience in the workplace?
Workplace stress can be lessened through reduced workloads, flexible working hours, or cultural changes that support improved work-life balance. Employers can also help employees learn to manage their levels of stress through resilience awareness and training. Higher levels of resiliency allow employees to better handle adversity and remain positive during difficult circumstances.
In today’s fast-paced work environment, resilience is a vital skill that every employee, manager, and employer should possess. Resilience in the workplace means the ability to handle adversity, bounce back from setbacks, and cope with the daily pressure and stressors that come with the job.
What is Resilience in the Workplace?
Resilience is not just about being tough or stoic. It’s about having the mental, emotional, and social skills to manage stress, to bounce back from setbacks, to learn from failures, and to adapt to changing conditions. Resilience is a key factor in personal and professional growth, well-being, and success. In the workplace, resilient employees are more engaged, productive, innovative, and loyal.
They are better able to handle change, conflict, and adversity, and to maintain positive relationships with colleagues and clients. There are also some key characteristics of resilient employees that you should know in the workplace.
4 Key Characteristics of Resilience
1. They have strong relationships
Quality relationships and connections provide employees with a support network that they can rely on during difficult times. They are better able to maintain a positive outlook. Developing strong relationships requires supportive communication, effective listening skills, building trust, and having fun.
2. They avoid burnout
When employees are burnt out they are unenthusiastic about work, and productivity and engagement suffer. Resilient employees know the importance of maintaining a healthy balance between work and their personal life. They know that they can only perform their best at work if they have time to recharge each day.
Resilient employees often take steps to manage their energy levels more effectively and to ensure that they are able to perform at the best of their abilities throughout.
3. They pursue big goals and stay inspired
Resilient employees have the passion and grit to go after long-term goals. Lofty goals are difficult to achieve, and resilient employees work through and around obstacles to meet those goals.
4. They are adaptable
Resilient employees see a challenge and figure out how they can control or influence it. They don’t possess a victim mentality or feel helpless to enact change. Employees with resilience in the workplace acknowledge their thoughts, emotions, and reactions when they’re under stress and they use them to drive purposeful action. With resilience at work, employees can better anticipate and manage risk, deal with setbacks, and stay engaged during challenging times.
How to Build Resilience in the Workplace
Building resilience is not a one-time event, but a continuous process that involves personal and organizational factors. Here are some tips on how to build resilience in the workplace:
Encourage open communication
Open and honest communication is essential for resilience. Encourage your team to share their thoughts, feelings, and concerns, and to seek help and support when needed. Create a safe and supportive work environment where feedback and constructive criticism are welcomed.
Foster a growth mindset
A growth mindset is the belief that one’s abilities and intelligence can be developed through practice, persistence, and learning from failures. Adopting a growth mindset can help employees see challenges as opportunities for learning and improvement, rather than as threats to their competence or worth.
Provide training and resources
Provide your team with training and resources on stress management, time management, conflict resolution, and other essential skills that can help them cope with challenges and thrive in the workplace.
Self-care is the practice of taking care of one’s physical, emotional, and social needs. Encourage your team to prioritize self-care by scheduling breaks, taking time off, participating in wellness programs, and engaging in hobbies and activities that they enjoy.
Create meaningful work
Meaningful work is work that aligns with one’s values, purpose, and interests. Employees who find their work meaningful are more likely to be engaged, motivated, and resilient. Consider how you can help your team find meaning in their work, whether it’s by giving them autonomy, feedback, recognition, or opportunities for growth.
How Can Employers Help Employees Improve Their Resilience in the Workplace
As an employer, you can help employees improve their resilience at work by promoting physical wellbeing, creating a healthy psychological environment, providing access to physical and mental health resources, and encouraging strong social networks.
Making resilience an organisational priority and taking steps to cultivate it helps employees take control of their emotions and mental wellbeing and makes them more likely to be adaptable during times of crisis or change. Zevo Health has a range of workplace wellbeing trainings, including developing resilience, equipped to make your employees more resilient.
*This is not medical advice, please contact a medical professional if you think you need to seek further help.