Stress and Employee Health: Why It Matters

There are a few broad themes that are important to consider when it comes to overall employee health and your business’s employee health culture, and the realm of stress is definitely on this list. Stress, anxiety and related burnout levels have risen for many people over the last several years, and as an employer, looking for ways to combat these concerns is vital.

At Nielsen Benefits Group, we’re happy to assist businesses of all sizes around Sandy with all their employee benefits and insurance needs, including important services like health benefit culture transformations that can have an enormous impact on your entire business. Limiting stress and helping maximize employee comfort is often a key part of improving your health benefit culture – this two-part blog series will discuss some of the key factors surrounding employee stress, why it’s so important to manage, and how you can go about doing so. 

stress employee health matters

Why Employee Stress Levels Matter

Firstly, before we get into some of the details on how to manage employee stress, let’s examine why this is such an important issue for businesses. The numbers here are stark: According to the American Institute of Stress, workplace stress costs US employers over $300 billion annually in lost productivity, medical expenses and other associated costs. 

This comes from absenteeism, employee turnover and even legal issues resulting from extreme employee stress. And that’s without even considering the personal impact on employees – increased stress can lead to a host of negative outcomes, from lower job satisfaction and self-esteem to physical health concerns like heart disease or diabetes. 

Factors That Influence Stress

There are several possible factors that may be causing employee stress in your workplace:

  1. Workload: Employees who feel overwhelmed with too much work are more likely to experience high levels of stress.
  2. Lack of work-life balance: When employees feel like they have to constantly be “on” and never disconnect from work, it can lead to burnout and increased stress levels.
  3. Poor communication: Miscommunication or lack of clear communication can lead to misunderstandings, frustration, and ultimately, stress for employees.
  4. Job insecurity: Employees who feel uncertain about their job stability may experience high levels of stress as a result.

These are just a few potential factors that can contribute to employee stress – there may be many more specific to your particular workplace. 

Managing Stress Has Value  – For Both Sides

As an employer, you have a vested interest in managing employee stress levels and promoting overall well-being – but it’s also important to recognize that this has value for employees as well. By providing support and resources for managing stress, you not only improve employee morale and job satisfaction, but also create a healthier and more productive work environment. 

In part two of this blog series, we’ll go over some specific approaches that may be helpful for managing employee stress in your workplace. In the meantime, be sure to contact Nielsen Benefits Group for more information on our health benefit culture transformation services or any of our other offerings.