It’s important to remember that your workers are more than the jobs they perform. Employers need to be aware that it’s not just the stress of working from home that may be impacting workers’ performance.
“For a long time there was an erroneous belief that you could check your personal stress at the door when you walked into the office. That’s just not true,” says Laurie Sharp-Page. “Our brain particularly struggles to do that when we’re doing everything in the same space. With so many people working from home, it’s difficult for them to delineate between work stress and home stress. That impacts their mental health across the board.”
As an increasing number of school districts in the U.S. announce they will begin the fall semester online, research is becoming available on how the pandemic is taking a toll on children’s mental health. One study out of China examined a sample group of 2,330 schoolchildren for signs of emotional distress. After an average lockdown of only 33.7 days, 22.6% of the children reported depressive symptoms and 18.9% were experiencing anxiety.
Allowing flexible schedules, providing extra time off and connecting employees with resources to help their children are some ways employers can help. Showing genuine concern through conversation and empathy is another way to assist that requires only an investment of time.