Is your job stressful?

Citing an American Psychological Association(APA) study, Medical News Today reports three-fourths of Americans say they are stressed about work & money; one-third of Americans are living with extreme stress, and the most commonly cited source of stress— mentioned by 74 percent of respondents — was work.

If you are think you are one of these people with a high degree of stress and poor quality of life due to work, take notice! companies large and small are recognizing that happy & healthy employees affect the bottom line in a positive way.

This month the APA recognized five organizations for their comprehensive efforts to promote employee health and well-being while improving performance. Companies presented with the American Psychological Association’s 2008 Psychologically Healthy Workplace Award (PHWA) were Arkansas Educational Television Network, Cooperativa de Seguros Múltiples de Puerto Rico, Nike Tennessee, Porter Keadle Moore (Georgia) and Westminster Savings Credit Union (British Columbia).

If you run a company or own a business and believe that it wouldn’t be practical for you to implement this, listen to what these organizations report: A turnover rate of 11 percent compared to the national average of 40 percent according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Surveys completed by employees of the winning organizations showed overall well-being and job satisfaction for employees to be significantly greater compared to national averages.

According to the APA report; at Westminster Savings Credit Union, high employee satisfaction and low turnover means that two thirds of WSCU’s openings are filled internally, lowering administrative costs. Increased productivity is another benefit for the organizations. In 2007, Nike Tennessee increased productivity by 51 percent, while reducing injury rates by almost 30 percent. And at Cooperativa de Seguros Múltiples, an insurance company in Puerto Rico, employee loyalty is high with a 15-year average length of service and a turnover rate of less than two percent.”

In a New York Times article published this week on the same subject, they point out that “48 percent of the employers in the survey said stress created by long hours and limited resources was affecting business performance, but only 5 percent said they were taking strong action to address those areas.”

The Times highlights some well know organizations that are showing initiative in this area as well. They include:

GlaxoSmithKline has program called “Team Resilience” which combines things like health assessments, discussion groups and follow-up evaluations to deal with workplace stress.

PricewaterhouseCoopers also addresses stress in multiple ways. For example, in annual surveys, employees asked for more coaching and opportunities to connect with more experienced colleagues — and got them.

Workplace Options, a provider of work-life employee benefits, reports that a recent poll of more than 700 working adults found 76 percent believe it is important that companies offer employees wellness programs to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

The U.S. Surgeon General states that 50 percent of this year’s high-cost employees in terms of health care were not in that category last year, and more than 87 percent of health care claims costs are due to an individual’s lifestyle, according to a study by Indiana University. To combat these trends, it is important for companies to consider adopting wellness initiatives that incorporate coaching for maximum results.

Predominantly from the viewpoint of Corporate Wellness, Talent Mangement cites the benefits of coporate wellness programs and coaching. “According to recent studies, pairing personalized coaching with employee wellness initiatives leads to higher success rates.”

What i think is evident is that employers are starting to realize that a happy healthy employee performs better. In order to affect this employers are recognizing that they must look at the employee in terms of their whole life, and how they can help them maintain a quality life.

About allan

Allan Fried is a New York City based Life & Career Coach specializing in working with people who want meaning in their careers. Having been an executive at a major entertainment company, COO at an early state digital media company, and owned his own business, he has powerful insights on what it takes to find and excel at work you love. He has been described by his clients as talented, Zen-like, insightful, and passionate. His client’s success can be attributed to his intuitive talent in guiding clients to uncover and reveal what is truly important to them. Allan has over 20 years experience as an executive and entrepreneur in the entertainment industry. He spent the bulk of his career at BMG as Vice-President International, where he worked on developing the careers of recording artists. In these positions he learned a lot about using one’s unique talents and gifts to pursue success. He has also been heavily involved in his community through involvement with Make-A-Wish Foundation, Manhattan Chamber of Commerce, Empire State Pride Agenda, Habitat for Humanity, and several other community initiatives

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