Running a small business is not easy. Though you can find satisfaction and purpose in work, you can also encounter stress and burnout. In the door, frame, and hardware industry, door distributors may find their current routines very hectic as they work understaffed during the labor shortage. During these times, employers must stay mindful of their employees’ mental health – and their own.
Maintaining a healthy mental state proves especially challenging in busy times. Employers can become easily overwhelmed, buried under a pile of never-ending deadlines. As Small Businessify points out, small business owners can find it difficult to disconnect outside of typical work hours because they are their own boss and may be handling multiple roles. But all work and no play can lead to serious burnout.
Though work is important, employers should not have to work endlessly. They should feel empowered to take breaks when overwhelmed, tired, or angry. Small Businessify suggests stepping outside for a walk or taking a day off to be with loved ones when needed; doing so will not only make you happier, but it can give you the motivation needed to return to work and perform your job effectively.
Adopting technology like project management software can also help reduce stress by streamlining the work process. By taking Excel spreadsheets and handmade drawings out of the picture, it reduces the chance of costly, time-consuming errors.
In addition to these tools, professional help is a valid option. Seeking help is an investment in yourself to lead a healthier, happier life. By acknowledging challenges and learning how to deal with them, employers build a better life and business for themselves and their employees.
Moreover, speaking openly about mental health can encourage employees to deal with their own. Some employees fear mentioning mental health in the workplace because of the associated stigma around illnesses such as anxiety and depression. When an employer shows that they care about their employees’ mental health, employees feel empowered to speak up and ask for appropriate accommodations that allow them to work effectively.
After all, employees can also become easily overwhelmed, and their emotional distress can impact others. The Conversation, a nonprofit news organization, warns about the problem of “presenteeism”: when an employee goes to work but is unable to perform at full capacity due to ill mental health. This may create more problems than if the employee stayed home. Providing resources like ample time off, paid mental health benefits, and one-to-one support meetings can reduce the chance of presenteeism.
Addressing mental health in small businesses can make both employers and employees better equipped to handle stress in hectic times. Those who keep their mental health in mind will foster a happier, more productive workplace.
Anna Litofsky, Marketing Coordinator, Software For Hardware, Atlanta, GA.