Burnout is a common problem in Australian workplaces – and in the NFP sector in particular.
Among the “most at-risk occupations” for mental heath claims, community sector workers – “social and welfare professionals” and “health and welfare support workers” – occupy two of the top five positions.
So do your organisation’s leaders recognise the role that your own processes might be playing in creating a high-stress environment?
The new year is always a great time to start afresh, reevaluate the way you do things and set yourself up for success at work. That’s especially true when you work in the NFP sector, where (given the seriousness of what can go wrong) process and paperwork can be a particular burden.
But by February, a whopping 80 percent of resolutions will have failed. So what are you likely doing wrong – and, more importantly, how can you actually achieve your work goals this year?
The Not-For-Profit People Conference is done for another year. And what a couple of days it was! The atmosphere was electric; the speakers inspiring; and the delegates’ enthusiasm was contagious.
It’s difficult to hand-pick the key takeaways from the conference – there were so many with 36 speakers and 23 sessions – so here are our top five based on the top issues facing people managers in NFPs today.
Building resilience – the process of adapting well in the face of adversity, trauma, or stress – can help people continue to perform at work, even in challenging times.
Stress. It’s normal. Every one will feel it at some point, and individuals have their own stress triggers.
At the same time, workplaces have a duty of care to ensure they offer their staff a physically and mentally safe and healthy space in which to work in.
So what could you be doing to ensure that there’s a little less stress in the day for your team, and for yourself?
Employees at a New Zealand company behind an innovative trial of a four-day working week have declared it a resounding success, with 78% saying they were better able to manage their work-life balance.
An analysis shows that the employees working four-day weeks felt better about their job, were more engaged, and generally reported greater work-life balance and less stress – all while maintaining the same level of productivity.
Office buildings, where many Australians spend most of their waking hours, can cause real health issues. Cubicles in offices usually consist of partitions made of particle board and vinyl carpet, synthetic flooring, a particle board desk and plastic or synthetic office chair, mostly lit by artificial lighting.
One excellent way to combat both sick days and stress is by filling your office with plants. Ideally, you want plants that will “scrub” the air of pathogens, improve the office’s mix of bacteria, and survive in low light with little care.
A key part of any manager’s job is to know how to approach staff who are struggling to do their job to the required standards or expectations.
But with increasing recognition of mental illness in the workplace, before you begin a performance management process with a staff member, it’s important to ask: could this be a mental health problem, rather than a pure performance problem?
And how do you tell the difference?
There are thousands of reasons to invest time and energy in fostering greater wellbeing in your workplace. And whatever role you play in your NFP, there are many things you can do to encourage greater wellbeing amongst staff and volunteers. Here are six, totally cost-free ideas to get you started.
You may know someone like this at work: optimistic and resilient, they appear to bounce through challenges drawing on an internal strength that helps them work through problems they encounter at work. Always hopeful and positive about the future, they treat stressful events as a “one-off” situation, appearing to have a built-in buffer that protects them against both ordinary and extraordinary events. Perhaps this is even you.
This sort of emotional resilience is often considered innate. But can it be taught?