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How managing employee stress leads to a healthier company

Sharon Florentine | Oct. 20, 2015
Helping employees manage and cope with workplace stress can boost engagement and benefit both individuals and the business.

Business have to be prepared to help their workers cope with stress, and to realize that recovery from stress is a critical element. "A lot of companies think, 'Well, I'll just show each individual person and they'll go use the resources', but that doesn't help if the culture isn't there to support that," Albrecht says. If you're pushing your employees hard, build in elements like flexible schedules, remote work opportunities and other options that can help employees recharge.

"Make sure that if there's a stressful event - like a software release, or critical project deadline -- you are giving your people time to bounce back, or they'll all burn out," Albrecht says.

Friendly competition

Limeade's solution uses a gamification approach that's socially connected to encourage collaboration and friendly competition - two factors that he says help workers not just start but stick with health and wellness initiatives.

"What we've found is that using gamification and social rewards are a much better way to foster trust, engagement and to motivate users. That friendly, low-stakes competition helps build a sense of community and they are excited to keep up. People also appreciate a 'kudos' and a 'thumbs-up' from the people they work will all day, not just from the technology," Albrecht says.

When measured through engagement, employee wellness programs that emphasize comprehensive stress management and resilience have significant bottom-line outcomes for business. "People who manage their stress well are more engaged. Engaged workers are physically and emotionally healthier; they miss fewer days of work, they are more productive when they are there. And that translates to a better bottom line," Albrecht says.

 

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