The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) have produced guidance to support the Management Standards associated with stress.
The approach they recommend is to reflect on which factors of your working life may be affecting you. The best time to reflect on these factors is before they are having a negative impact.
Identifying what has caused the most impact in the past enables you to think about and understand potential stressors, and look to address them where possible.
The factors identified by the HSE are as follows:
- Demands – this includes issues such as workload, work patterns and the work environment
- Control – how much say the person has in the way they do their work
- Support – this includes the encouragement, sponsorship and resources provided by the organisation, line management and colleagues
- Relationships – this includes promoting positive working to avoid conflict and dealing with unacceptable behaviour
- Role – whether people understand their role within the organisation and whether the organisation ensures that they do not have conflicting roles
- Change – how organisational change (large or small) is managed and communicated in the organisation
Putting this into practice
Your organisation has a duty of care to your health and wellbeing.
When you begin to feel your wellbeing is being compromised – you may feel out of kilter, or wobbled – reflecting on these factors can help you identify what has changed or increased to a point where you are experiencing negative consequences.
This is what you can do:
- Look at the six factors and reflect on the extent to which you are satisfied with them. You can do this by ranking them or using a rating scale, for example: very dissatisfied, dissatisfied, neither/nor, satisfied, or very satisfied
- Reflect on what you may be able to do to address any dissatisfaction
- Reflect on what your line manager or supervisor can do to address the dissatisfaction
- Reflect on what your organisation can do to address the dissatisfaction
- Book a conversation with your line manager or supervisor to discuss your reflections and have an open, productive conversation about how you can work together to address them