Most jobs entail some level of stress that can affect your employees. Short-lived stress can be beneficial to be alert and resilient in doing a task. However, if it continues excessively, it turns into high-level stress, which causes significant problems for an employee, such as the insufficient capacity to think clearly and make effective decisions to fulfil tasks. And this can impact the workplace negatively.
More than 3 in 5 Australians are experiencing stress at work, but many feel they cannot turn to their bosses for help. Research by global HR firm ADP also found out that Australians were among the least likely in the region to discuss mental health issues at work. 
Reasons why you need to raise stress awareness to reduce stress in the workplace
Stress reduces 33% of productivity.
Stress and low mood account for 33% of lost productivity in Australia. Stress causes a lack of sleep, resulting in a lack of concentration and motivation to do tasks, leading to poor performance at work. Employees can't produce high-quality output as they are not at their best to think of practical decisions. 
Stressed employees cost employers billions.
Stress is one of the reasons why employees go on sick leave, and some are eventually quitting their jobs. This can happen if you fail to provide early intervention for employees with mental health conditions due to a high level of stress.
According to Safe Work Australia's report, absenteeism costs Australia around 92 million working days each year, with an average daily cost arising from $308 in 2013 to $340 in 2014. The actual cost to employers was around $10.11 billion per year. Aside from that, according to PwC, staff turnover also costs an estimated $3.8 billion in lost productivity annually. 
Create a safe, healthy and stress-free workplace
Many contributing factors cause work-related stress including:
symptoms of panic attacks, such as rapid heartbeat or chest pain
feeling tense and edgy at work
being late all the time
not wanting to participate in meetings or staff events
not being able to concentrate and feeling distracted
getting upset or angry easily
not being able to complete work and feeling overwhelmed
distancing themselves from other people at work and at home 
If you have noticed any of these with your employees, you must show them that you are willing to help them as work-stress is challenging to handle if they don't get proper support. Encourage them to reach out if they need help, and you can help them by:
Identify possible workplace practices, actions, or incidents that may cause, or contribute to, workers' stress.
Take proactive actions to eliminate or minimise these risks by raising awareness on managing stress.
Knowing what contributes to the stress will help you think of suitable strategies to manage and create a stress-free environment in your workplace.
Have you taken the Workplace Mental Health Quiz? Giving you tools and information to improve your Workplace mental health strategies.
If you would like to know more about how to make a positive impact within your business or find out how we can help you to improve your team’s mental wellbeing, that’s tailor-made to your team and progress you can test and measure, contact us today on 1300 114 818 for a private and confidential conversation or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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