“Today, whoever wins the war for talent gets to stay in business.” Ted Coine, “Return on Morale”
Stress in the Workplace: Winning the Race with Wolves
Dateline 2013: The war for talent is on. The race for survival is real. Five challenges, five wolves are chasing even the best and brightest among us, and too many of us are losing the race. Statistics tell us that if you are not being chased by wolves, someone you lead, work for or love, is. Companies that want to survive and thrive must develop communities of purpose, innovation, collaboration, and success; They must win the race with wolves.
Our ability to rise to the challenges and win the race with the wolves before us is real. Working on overdrive, being stuck in organizational stasis, or burying your head in the sand hoping what worked in the past will optimize results now or in the future, is a march of folly.
Before you meet the wolves, before we talk about how to win the race, here are some facts you need to know: The World Health Organization states that stress will be the major cause of disability in the world by 2030. Whether you are stressed or not, statistics tell us that someone you lead, work for, work with, know or love is. Managing stress is important, but it is no longer enough because five hungry wolves are chasing the best and brightest among us and too many of us are losing the race.
Working on overdrive, being stuck in organizational stasis, or burying your head in the sand hoping what worked in the past will optimize results now or in the future, is a march of folly.
• Wolf 1. Financial (job, career, corporate challenges) that can keep in stasis, on hyper-drive, or traveling in reverse putting our career and health at risk.
• Wolf 2. Communication breakdowns that crush or destroy our individual and collective potential and erode employee engagement, workplace satisfaction and results.
• Wolf 3. Personal challenges that impede our true potential by eroding confidence, engagement, empowerment, happiness and fulfillment
• Wolf 4. Interpersonal conflicts that destroys the personal relationships we need to succeed on a personal, business and organizational level
• Wolf 5. Stress related brown-outs and burn-outs; mental or physical crises that drain our hope, courage and potential.
What are the personal, social, and economic consequences of not recognizing the wolves and learning to beat them at their own game?
• U.S. corporations spend in excess of $700 billion on executive training, and more than $500 billion on workplace learning, development, and training initiatives. Meanwhile the cost of “executive” stress relating to emotional, physical ailments, addictions, absenteeism, discord, and personal problems is more than $10 billion a year and the general workplace tab is $300 billion+.
• The U.S. divorce rate has skyrocketed to 70% of marriages. European and Canadian marriages have a 50% divorce rate. Mental health and stress related challenges and problems are on the rise, and they are challenges that impact our ability to optimize our lives, our potential, our organizations, and our competitive edge.
• Stress is not an American phenomenon. The World Health Organization forecasts that stress will be the major cause of physical disability in the world by 2030.
Learning to not only optimize strengths but USE challenges, changes, stressors, and even failures we face to optimize and catalyze our individual and collective potential is real and doable.
Image Credit: Taiga / 123RF Stock Photo
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