Your job is important - it's where you spend most of your waking hours. So when the Australian National University recently released a study about how your employment affects your mental health, I was interested.
According to the study, it is better to have no job at all than to have a bad job. "Those who moved into optimal jobs showed significant improvement in mental health compared to those who remained unemployed. Those respondents who moved into poor-quality jobs showed a significant worsening in their mental health compared to those who remained unemployed."
Wow, I mean we all knew mental health was affected by your workplace, but it's better to be unemployed than in a bad job? This study serves as a wake-up call to employers. Yes, you need care about the productivity and growth of your company, but you need to balance that with your employees' well-being.
For the sanity of your team, do you have a metric to track their health?
At Rhythm Systems, we use a KPI aptly called the Employee Health Index. We have success criteria based on each employee's gut reaction. Green means I feel great and balanced. An employee who is SuperGreen is ready to take on new challenges and feels fabulous. Yellow is a yield sign meaning, I am full right now, I can't take on another thing. If someone is Yellow, it might mean they need something taken off their plate, and it definitely means they shouldn't be given anything new. Red is just like the stop sign. Red means I am completely overwhelmed, I need help, I am drowning. At this point, our team puts all hands on deck to help this employee get back on track and feel better.
Next time you find out an employee is overworked and overloaded, take the time to sit down with him and find out how you can help him get balanced again. I bet you would rather have a happy, healthy, engaged employee rather than no employees.