Everyone experiences stress, and some jobs can be more stressful than others. While we can’t always control the causes of stress, we can control how we respond to them. As a convenience store manager, it’s important to not only manage stress in your own life, but also employee stress.
Common Effects of Stress
Stress can have a variety of physical and emotional effects on a person. Symptoms can include irritability, lack of sleep, and high blood pressure, just to name a few. While the workplace can be stressful, it often isn’t the only source of stress – employees can be experiencing stressful situations in their personal lives as well. Even though you do not have control over what might be going on in an employee’s personal life, there are ways you can help them reduce or manage stress at work.
8 Tips to Help Employees Manage Stress
When a team member is dealing with a lot of stress, it could have a negative impact on your entire staff and your customers. As a leader, you should be setting an example for your employees on healthy ways of managing stress. There are also ways you can try to reduce workplace stress for everyone – here are a few examples:
- Build team relationships: Encouraging unity among team members will go a long way toward lowering stress by improving employees’ relationships with each other and decreasing arguments among your staff.
- Establish open communication: Make sure your employees know they can speak to you about anything that may be bothering them. If they know they can come to you and trust you with any issues, they’ll be less likely to internalize things that may be causing stress on the job.
- Create a positive work environment: Working in a convenience store can create challenging interpersonal situations that easily lead to employees gossiping and complaining to each other. As a manager, you must constantly work on maintaining an environment built on respect. If you let small infractions pass, they may turn into bigger issues that can lead to bullying or even harassment in the workplace.
- Allow for flexibility where possible: Convenience stores don’t have the option of being as flexible as some businesses – employees can’t work from home or set their own schedules. However, you can try to be as flexible as possible to accommodate employees’ schedules for school, taking care of family members, and dealing with emergencies.
- Recognize and praise employees: Everyone enjoys knowing they are appreciated. Help boost employee morale and lower stress by recognizing employee achievements – including achievements outside of your store, such as sporting competitions, academic achievements or life events like weddings or births.
- Encourage individual self-care: Self-care is an important method for improving mental and emotional health and reducing stress. Encourage employees to take time for themselves and participate in hobbies or activities to help them relax and reduce stress.
- Reduce workplace stress: There are always going to be times when working in a convenience store will be stressful. A sudden rush, a problem with a pump, or an unhappy customer can create stress in even the most even-keeled employee. The best thing you can do to relieve stress is to provide employees with comprehensive convenience store training. Those stressful situations will still come up, but they’ll be easier to handle for employees who feel prepared and supported.
- Provide stress education: Education is always key. Provide employees with training materials that will help them recognize and deal with stress in healthy ways.
Taking Care of Yourself as a Leader
Remember the “oxygen mask rule”: You can’t take care of others if you don’t first take care of yourself. In our online training module Taking Care of Yourself as a Leader, leaders learn self-care strategies that are broken down into three parts: physical wellness, mental wellness, and emotional wellness. Leaders can choose the strategies that they can best incorporate into their daily lives, helping them live more balanced lives.