As a manager, how can you spot growing levels of anxiety among your staff members? Several managers assume that their team is under more strain than usual, but mere assumptions alone will not do. To reduce anxiety among your workers, it is more important to identify that the issue exists and work your way from there. Spotting changes in workers is potentially tough, particularly because numerous individuals are working from home. In an ideal scenario, these are some of the warning signs of anxiety that managers have to watch out for.
- Behavioral changes
- Changes to habits at workplaces
- Considerably increased or reduced levels of energy
- Greater defensiveness or irritability than before
- Pulling out of workplace meetings
- A greater absenteeism than in the past
- Avoiding individuals and activities that employees would generally prefer
- Sullenness or a state of being sombre
Mentioned above are signs that there is something wrong with an employee, but these would only be meaningful in the event they are contextualized. After all, one person may act in a different way from another under stressful circumstances. For instance, one may sit through a meeting without uttering a word due to anxiety, whereas another may speak more than usual. Do you feel that any mental condition’s symptom should be conveyed through a particular warning sign? If yes, you would possibly be unable to identify the existence of that issue.
A leader cannot ask a worker questions such as “Are you mentally depressed?” or “Do you suffer from anxiety?” Doing it would lead that person to an open conversation with the human resources department. The right approach is a caring and open-ended one, which starts with asking them “How are you?” They may reply that they are ‘fine’, but this is where you should act as an investigator. This is to say, you should look into the usual response by talking more about yourself or driving the talk towards your concerns regarding them.
Another thing to consider when spotting anxiety among your workers has to do with relationships. You should recognize that occasionally there exist very few noticeable signs that somebody is anxious. Having honest relations with workers will possibly make them approach you over their concerns. Granted that you do not have an in-house shrink, maintaining those kinds of relationships is the optimal way to achieve this response from your troubled workers.