Employee Well-being Affects Work Safety
Stress at work, oppression, and constant exhaustion have a strong impact not only on the quality of work performed, productivity, but also reduce the safety of employees and cause accidents. By paying attention to employees’ well-being and a pleasant work environment, there will be fewer accidents at work. Read more: Employee Engagement with Well-being Initiatives.
According to Eurostat statistics, in 2018, 3.1 million accidents at work were recorded in the European Union countries, of which 3,332 were fatal accidents. Between 2017 and 2018, the number of accidents at work in the European Union increased by 0.3% or by 8,137 more.
How to reduce the growing number of accidents every year and increase work safety?
Level of employee well-being
Well-being at work refers to all aspects of work – the internal work environment and work safety, and employees’ attitude towards their work, environment, and organization. To take better care of employees, promote well-being activities, we should start by determining the level of well-being of employees:
- Create and send a survey to all employees
The questionnaire can include all questions of interest related to employees’ current well-being at work, factors influencing it, stress levels, and work safety.
- Individual negotiations
Regardless of the survey’s realization, individual interviews can be arranged with some or all employees to talk face to face, listen to their opinion of the situation at the workplace, and the orderliness of the internal environment to feel safe.
- Anonymous letters of recommendation or complaint
Anonymous suggestions or complaints may be arranged to promote employee transparency and improve the working environment. Often, the employer does not think about the flaws of the workplace’s everyday environment and how to improve their well-being.
What mainly affects the well-being of employees negatively.
- Burnout syndrome
According to the CareerBuilder survey, “61% of employees feel ‘burned out’ and overwhelmed at work.” To not look weak in the employer’s eyes, the employee is unable to admit overwork or, take on additional work. This destroys the employee’s mental health, as well as does not promote more productive work.
- High level of stress at work
According to the CareerBuilder survey, “31% of respondents report very high levels of stress at work.” The survey documents that stress also affects physical health, causing fatigue, pain, and poses mental health threats such as depression, anxiety, and anger. These findings highlight the link between well-being and stress at work.
- Appreciation and recognition at work
Feedback, suggestions, advice, critique, and praise – form a moral assessment and cooperation between employer and employee. If there is poor communication, only negative evaluation, and inadequate criticism, then the employee loses motivation to work, perform their work productively, as well as the level of well-being is below zero.
These are some of the most common factors influencing well-being in the work environment, which negatively impact mental health. Then unconsciously, it is more possible to get depression, be burned out, and create a negative internal work environment by causing work safety risks for yourself and others.
Negative influence on workers safety
According to the possible negative factors, it can be assumed that employees’ safety is also directly related to their well-being. Awareness of safety measures, emergency procedures, and a safe working environment are necessary to prevent workers from being in a risky situation, as physical and mental health determines workers’ actual safety. According to Workplace Strategies for Mental Health data, “82% of workers with mental health problems say it affects their work and behavior in the workplace, and 53% of those with physical health problems say it affects the quality of work.”
For example, if an employee is overworked, he loses focus, makes careless mistakes, and, as a result, negligently endangers the safety, as he can unknowingly take dangerous actions – injuring himself and colleagues.
Increase employee well-being → increase work safety
By taking care of employees’ well-being and ensuring a positive and healthy work environment, it is possible to reduce the number of employee’s safety hazards and accidents. Companies and employers need to pay more attention to employees and their well-being because the most important resources are human resources. Well-being activities will unite the work team and individually improve the employees, creating a safe environment for everyone.
Learn more about improving employee well-being: How to Successfully Implement Well-being Initiatives