Employers often struggle to get workers talking about mental wellness – but how many of the non-verbal signs are you missing? One new study suggests a pattern of poor sleep could be strongly linked to work-related stress and poor productivity.
The forthcoming report, conducted by the Global Corporate Challenge (GCC), offers valuable insight to employers who are keen to support their employees and make them more resilient to the harmful effects of work-related stress.
Researchers measured the correlation between stress levels and employee sleep quality, fatigue levels and productivity across more than 160,000 employees.
The report looked at stress levels both before and after taking part in the GCC health program over the course of 100 days and the pre-event responses present a worrying picture for employers:
77% of those reporting extreme stress are not getting a good night’s sleep. For those who don’t feel stressed at all, only 38% struggle to get a good night’s sleep.
More than three quarters of employees who report “extreme” stress levels also report above average fatigue ‒ an obvious cause for concern for their employers due to the increased risk of workplace accidents.
Productivity is also shown to be considerably lower amongst employees that feel “extremely” stressed. Only 63% of them feel their productivity is above average, compared to 87% of those who don’t feel stressed at all.
Dr David Batman, GCC Chief Medical Officer and a leading authority on workplace health states that “sleep disturbances are the first indicator of a stressed employee, and these outcomes indicates that those with the least stress will sleep better, have more energy, suffer less fatigue, concentrate better and report greater productivity”.
Louise Bradley, president and CEO of the Health Commission of Canada, said business would be hit hard if their fail to help employees manage their mental health; “The bottom line will be impacted, staff morale will be impacted, the company’s ability to attract good people will be impacted and – just as importantly – their ability to keep them is going to be impacted.”
The outcomes of this GCC Insights report, showing the positive impact that an effective health intervention can make in lowering stress levels, improving sleep quality and increasing productivity, is released on Friday 5 March.