Fig. 8.6: Organizational approach
Individuals may design their own strategies to reduce stress, but it is a must for the organizations to develop programmes that will help the employees in reducing their stress. This will lead to less employee turnover, absenteeism and as a result productivity will improve. Some of the measures which organizations can take are :
1. Selection and Placement : Individuals differ in their response to stress situations. We know that 'Type A' individuals are more prone to stress. On the other hand, in the organizations there are certain jobs which are more stressful as compared to other jobs. While doing the selection and placement of the employees, these factors must be kept in mind. The individuals who are more prone to stress should not be put on jobs which are stressful. The individuals who are less prone to stress may adapt better to high stress jobs and perform those jobs more effectively.
2. Goal Setting : Based on extensive amount of research it has been concluded that individuals perform better when they have specific and challenging goals and they receive feedback on how well they are progressing towards those goals. Goal setting can reduce stress as well as provide motivation. It will result in less employee frustration, role ambiguity and stress.
3. Improved Communication : Sometimes due to lack of effective communication from the superiors, the employees do not know what they have to do and how they have to do it. This results in role ambiguity. Similarly, when two or more persons have contradicting role demands from an employee, it reads to role conflict if there is lack of proper communication. Effective communication with employees reduces the uncertainty by lessening role ambiguity and role conflict.
4. Redesigning Jobs : Organizations should redesign the jobs in such a way as to give employees more responsibility, more meaningful work, more autonomy and increased feedback. This will help reduce the stress caused by monotony, routine work, work overload and role ambiguity. Job redesigning enhances motivation, reduces the stress among the employees and enhances "Quality of work life".
5. Participative Decision Making : If the organizations give the employees participation in those decision that directly affect them and their job performance, it can increase employee control and reduce the role stress. The main reason of role stress is that employees feel uncertain about their goals, expectations and how they will be evaluated. These uncertainties can be reduced by the management by giving the employees a right to participate in the decision making.
6. Building Teamwork : The management should try to create such work environment in which there is no provision for interpersonal conflict or intergroup conflict. Such conflicts are the causes of stress, such should be prevented from building or eliminated if they develop. Accordingly such team work should be developed that groups and the members are mutually supportive and productive. Members of the group should consider themselves as members of the same family and seek social support from each other.
7. Personal Wellness Programmes : These personal wellness programmes focus on the employees total physical and mental condition. Organizations can provide facilities at their premises for physical fitness such as gyms, swimming pools, tennis courts etc. as well as psychological counseling. They should hold seminars or workshops to make the employees understand nature and sources of stress and the possible ways to reduce it. These workshops should help those individuals who are already under stress. Moreover, a supervisor can improve personal wellness of his subordinates through positive example, encouragement and by practicing the basic concepts and techniques of human resource management. To conclude we can say that all these strategies or a combination thereof should be applied to make the work environment less stressful to a level which is positive and challenging.