No job is completely free from stress. The construction industry is no exception. In fact, construction professionals have to deal with three levels of stress: physical, mental, and external factors, such as weather and safety-related challenges. The main causes of stress are physically demanding work, poor communication, labor shortages, too much work, unrealistic deadlines, and conflicting demands. Read on as our Bradenton construction lawyers discuss how to recognize and manage stress when working in construction.
How Stress Affects Construction Employees
It is rare for an entire construction operation to run 100 percent smoothly. Sometimes materials are delivered late or arrive damaged, inclement weather delays projects, or change orders alter your timeline. Stress affects construction employees in many ways including:
- Decreased focus on the job
- Less effective interaction with others
- Increased worry
- Sleep disruption
- Reduced reaction times
- Poor dietary habits
- Low employee morale
- Headaches, anxiety, and panic attacks
- Depression or suicidal thoughts
- Increased likelihood of developing major health problems (i.e., heart attacks and strokes)
Prolonged Stress Can Lead to Suicide
Stress is a part of life and cannot be avoided entirely; however, a constant state of stress can be physically and mentally detrimental to construction employees. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the construction industry ranks second in suicides among all occupations. It is often seen as the silent killer. Employees who continually experience chronic pain, low or inconsistent pay, or poor working conditions are more likely to commit suicide. To combat stress, it is critical that companies, as well as employees, find adequate ways to handle stress so that it does not become overwhelming and cause physical, emotional, and mental damage.
Help Employees Recognize the Signs of Stress
Employers play a critical role in minimizing their employees’ stress. The following strategies can limit stress on the job:
- Ensure job roles and tasks are clear
- Provide realistic deadlines
- Keep overtime to a minimum
- Avoid overloading employees
- Encourage employees to rest and recharge
- Give employees more control over certain aspects of their jobs
- Recognize and award employee performance
- Treat employees with respect
- Mitigate exposure to noise, dust, and toxic substances
Job stress puts employees at risk for injury, death, and other health-related issues. Thousands of work-related accidents occur annually, so prioritizing the health and safety of your employees is critical. Reach out to our Bradenton contractor lawyers for guidance on minimizing workplace hazards and increasing safety.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.