Workplace stress is a big problem. According to the American Institute of Stress, a phenomenal 83% of American workers suffer from work-related stress. 25% of these say that work stress is the biggest stressor in their lives.
This is an issue on more levels than one. As well as the obvious human health and wellbeing problem, workplace stress has a negative impact on business. Stressed workers are not good workers.
Workplace stress reduces productivity and quality of work. It increases absences and workplace conflict. All in all, it’s really bad news for your business.
So, anything that reduces workplace stress and boosts employee wellbeing is well worth spending some time and money on.
Here are five of the very best workplace stress management tools out there:
It’s the small things that wear you down. Small, persistent frustrations work like a drip in a rock fissure. Slowly but surely, they erode the foundations of your mental health until you cave.
Unnecessary extra work is like that eroding drip. It’s a real mental health killer. Every added step in a workflow is a drain on energy, mental resources, and ultimately on wellbeing.
We’ve all experienced the frustration of having to sit through meetings that could have been emails, or of having to click back and forth between platforms with copy pasted data. It’s time-consuming, it’s tiresome, and it reduces workplace wellbeing by endless excruciating increments.
So, if you want to truly focus on workplace wellbeing, the best place to start is all those small but annoying extra steps that your staff have to take every day. At Kanban Zone, we provide businesses with a streamlining tool. It centralizes your platforms and processes to eliminate a lot of those irritating extra steps.
For example, it aligns your teams for faster, easier collaboration. It also allows you to flow work in a smooth, streamlined way across your entire company. This makes everything a lot simpler, and means that your teams can get their work done without unnecessary platform-hopping and copy pasting.
Create A Happy Workplace – QoWL
QoWL (Quality of Working Life) is about a lot more than job satisfaction. Job satisfaction is part of it, but its scope is a lot wider.
As well as general job satisfaction, QoWL metrics measure the impact of work on overall life and wellbeing, including outside of working hours.
Measuring QoWL is very important, because high QoWL is associated with:
- Lower absence rates
- Higher quality of work
- Greater productivity
- Better team engagement
and, most importantly, improved mental health.
There is a tool to measure QoWL. It’s a psychometric test called the Work-Related Quality of Life Scale (WRQoL). It’s used all over the world for assessing QoWL.
In general, a QoWL assessment is carried out by professionals, but you can download a free tool to conduct your own study here. This isn’t as comprehensive as a professional assessment, but it will give you an idea of how your workplace is impacting employee wellbeing.
Avoid Burnout – Outbase
Outbase is a prospecting platform which gives more power and agency to sales teams. This is important, because feelings of powerlessness are a huge contributor to workplace stress.
People are more able to cope with stressful situations if they feel like they have some agency. If they have recourse to tools and the scope to take the initiative, crises are a lot less stressful than if things escalate out of their control.
So, tools which give your employees more control over their workflows help to alleviate the stress of difficult situations as they arise.
Outbase makes it easy to find prospects, define markets, connect with customers, and control campaigns. Sales teams aren’t at the mercy of auto dialers and unpredictable markets. Instead, they have the tools to take the initiative and control their own workflows.
Improve Wellbeing – Headspace for Work
Headspace is a renowned mindfulness app designed to improve mental wellbeing and clarity. It offers a series of guided mindfulness meditations and mindfulness training for a variety of purposes, including anxiety reduction, weight loss, improved focus, and more.
Now, Headspace has released a work version which describes itself as “a science-backed meditation and mindfulness solution for the workplace.” It offers free Headspace access for all employees, an administrator portal, engagement resources, and a dedicated ‘success manager’ for each business.
Ultimately, Headspace for Work is a way for businesses to give staff free access to one of the world’s premier mental health resources. You can even run group mindfulness sessions using Headspace if that’s your kind of thing.
Improve Focus – Noisli
Noisli is designed to block out external distractions and boost focus. It works by allowing users to mix sounds into their own, personal soundscape which they can then listen to using headphones.
Noisli offers 28 high-quality background sounds which can be mixed in whatever way suits the listener best. Sound volume can be adjusted individually to produce top-notes and lower, background noises.
There are pre-made playlists for productivity, relaxation, and more. The app also comes with a timer to help prevent burnout – a very useful feature from the perspective of workplace wellbeing!
So, why is a background-sound app on a list of workplace stress-busters? Well, the science is actually pretty cool. The typical office environment is full of sudden spikes in noise (laughter, doors slamming, machines beeping etc). When these occur, they jerk us out of calm focus and put our brains into ‘alert’ mode.
By masking these volume spikes with smooth, regular background sound, we can keep our internal alarm systems cool and calm. This enables us to get into ‘the zone’ and to work in a calm, consistent manner. It improves productivity, reduces stress, and enhances creativity.
Some people like the ambient noise of an office environment. But for those who find it distracting and stressful, Noisli is a great option.
Use tech and tools to boost workplace wellbeing
Workplace stress can have a huge impact on every aspect of an employee’s life. What’s more, once a stress cycle begins it can quickly snowball, having a negative effect on everything from health to productivity.
Tools like Headspace for Work, Outbase, Kanban Zone, and Noisli can all help to boost workplace wellbeing. If you’re not sure which to choose, try running a QuWOL test to discover your workplace’s major stressors.