How stressful is it being a HR Manager?

How stressful is it being a HR Manager?

Stress can hit anyone at any level of the business and recent research shows that work-related stress is widespread and is not confined to particular sectors, jobs or industries. But in this article we will be focusing on stress with regards to HR management.

Top 10 Causes of Stress at Work:

  1. Being given too much work
  2. Unrealistic deadlines
  3. I am not paid enough for the hours I work / duties I perform
  4. Work hours are eating into my private life
  5. Fear of missing targets
  6. I am expected to work more hours than I am supposed to
  7. Undue scrutiny / micromanagement by my boss
  8. Harassment by bosses / colleagues
  9. I fear redundancies
  10. Relationships with colleagues

Lack of stress management in the workplace contributes to illnesses, non attendance and employee turnover. Another primary indicator of stress is under performance at work. To deal with stress in workers, it is vital to take effective actions and procedures. These measures will not only benefit the stressed employee but also, improves the scope for organisational development.

Here are some tips for managing stress through the human resource at work:

  • Accept that You Have a Complex and Difficult Job

Have you ever heard the Sheryl Crowe song, No One Said it Would be Easy?  Sometimes after dealing with a particularly stressful employee issue I hear the chorus of that song looping over and over again in my head.

It’s really important that you don’t fight reality or waste valuable time and energy wishing HR wasn’t so hard. Recognize that when it comes to HR, difficult situations and frustrations go with the territory.

One thing that helps is to always tackle difficult employee issues with positivity, treating the issue like it’s a challenging puzzle that you’re trying to solve.  Also remember that every problem has more than one solution.

  • Reaching Out to Specialists and Consultants

Whether taking things too personally, feeling overwhelmed processing a significant downsizing of staff or stressed upgrading a computer system, don't be that lone Rambo or Rambette. Reach out for expert support. Especially with seriously disgruntled or dysfunctional employees, whenever possible, collaborate with an Employee Assistance Program counselor. And, as mentioned, for widespread department tension consider using a corporate change/critical intervention consultant.

  • See Things from the Employee’s Perspective

It’s definitely easier said than done. But there are probably very specific reasons why someone is having difficulties at work. Have they always acted this way, or are new factors contributing to the problem? If so, what are those factors and how can they be resolved?

Is it possible that a harsh management style is triggering pushback? Have you ever had a manager who was micromanaged you and didn’t even realise they were doing it? While it may be hard to see, it could be happening to your employees.

Spend time looking into problematic situations with a holistic approach. Try to understand why an employee is acting the way they are. This will help you find practical solutions and avoid the mistake of always faulting the employee.

  • Encouraging Independence by Setting Boundaries

These three boundary-setting strategies will enable the HR Manager to successfully juggle various roles and responsibilities.

  1. Delegation. Clearly, giving others a chance to demonstrate their skills and expertise while you monitor (not micromanage) their performance is vital
  2. Education. Another key stress manager is helping others not be so dependent upon your indispensable knowledge. Training for employees and supervisors on HR-related procedures, negotiating information on websites, and encouraging self-initiated employee data gathering, etc., is vital in today's time- and task-driven environment.
  3. Separation. Finally, generate the space-time dynamics for optimal performance for HR. Balance accessibility and boundaries with "closed door" time; design a form and function layout that allows for vital interdependence between HR and employees.
  • Don’t be Afraid to Ask for Help

This is an easy thing to do, but it’s often forgotten. If your organization consists of more than just you, then help is out there. Find someone whose judgment you trust and get a different perspective about a difficult situation from them. Of course exercise discretion and be careful that you never violate confidentiality. This could be:

  1. An HR peer
  2. Your direct manager
  3. The employee’s manager
  4. A member of senior management

Just don’t be afraid to ask for someone else’s perspective on issues that arise. It’s not a sign of weakness. However, it is a sign that you show reasonable judgment.

Thinking about HR management courses but not sure which HR courses you should choose? Read more about the human resources courses available at London TFE.


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