A review of current literature reinforces the link between emotional capability, resilience, well-being and the bottom-line impacts of employee absenteeism, stress-related illness and low levels of engagement (i.e. lack of discretionary effort).
The New ROI Dave Bookbinder https://newroi.com/2017/05/build-resilience-to-boost-profits
The Bottom Line on Resilience
Leaders who would contemplate an investment in resilience training and education would naturally want to understand the measurable ROI. According to Cheryl, the two biggest results are increased engagement and increased employee retention.
Employee turnover is not only disruptive, it’s expensive. We’ve previously discussed the cost to replace employees, so it suffices to say that with increased retention comes the avoided costs associated with turnover.
Regarding engagement, Gallup finds that two thirds of U.S. workers were not engaged in their jobs. As Gallup notes, “they are also more likely to miss work and change jobs when new opportunities arise.”
Dave Nast provides the following sobering statistics regarding the impact of employee engagement: • Disengaged workers cost the US about $500B/year in lost productivity.
• 80% of employees that are dissatisfied with their direct manager are disengaged. • 46% of new hires fail within 18 months, 89% of those failures are due to poor culture fit. • Engaged employees are 31% more productive, create 37% more sales, and are 3x’s as creative and innovative.
• Companies where the majority of the workforce are engaged improved operating income by 51% over companies with a majority of disengaged employees.
• Organizations with a higher number of actively engaged employees have an average of 147% higher earnings per share then the norm.
• Engaged employees are 87% less likely to leave a company than disengaged employees.
• Companies with a highly engaged workforce have 49% less accidents onsite. As you can see, employee engagement has real economic consequences.
In Conclusion Learning resilience takes training, coaching, planning, and intention for people to be able to think logically and objectively at a time when our emotions are telling us to run for the hills.
Today’s employers are challenged to provide competitive benefits and employee engagement strategies that not only support the wellbeing of their employees, but also improve the bottom line. As resilience building and mindfulness training programs continue to gain momentum in the workplace, meQuilibrium conducted a study to measure resilience against industry-standard psychological metrics and desired business outcomes. Today the company released the study findings in a report, “The Science Behind Resilience: A Study of Psychometric Measures and Business Outcomes,” which highlights the impact of resilience on stress, absenteeism, intent to quit, job satisfaction, and physical health.
“Over the last decade, research has shown that high stress in employee populations has increased dramatically. Because high stress leads to other health and emotional issues, employers are more determined than ever to address stress in the workforce,” says LuAnn Heinen of the National Business Group on Health, the nation’s only non-profit organization devoted exclusively to representing large employers’ perspective on national health policy issues and helping companies optimize business performance through health improvement, innovation, and health care management. “Our own survey data shows that improving resiliency/reducing stress is among the top 5 behaviors employers say they are focused on in 2016.”
meQuilibrium surveyed 2,000 employed individuals, ranging from age 18 to 64. Key findings from the study include:
• Stress: Highly resilient workers have 46 percent less perceived stress than low resilience workers.
• Absenteeism: Compared to highly resilient workers, twice as many employed individuals with low resilience have reported 1 to 3 absences in the past month.
• Intent to Quit: Individuals with low resilience are twice as likely as those with high resilience to quit in the next six months.
• Job Satisfaction: Four times as many highly resilient workers are highly satisfied with their jobs, compared to those with resilience scores in the bottom quartile.
• Physical Health: Employees with low resilience are more than twice as likely to be overweight and twice as likely to report a hospital stay in the past year.
These results underscore that employers who work to improve resilience within their employee base will develop a more engaged, healthy and productive workforce. Moreover, it shows that resilience is a measureable competency comprising specific coping skills for work and life . “The evidence is in: resilience has a measurable, proven effect on your bottom line,” said Jan Bruce, co-founder and CEO of meQuilibrium. “Resilience isn’t just a nice-to-have, but a foundational business imperative because having a happier, less stressed, more engaged and focused workforce delivers higher productivity, lower healthcare costs, less absenteeism—and better overall financial performance.”
It’s clear that stress and burnout related to the increasing pace and intensity of work are on the rise globally. A survey of over 100,000 employees across Asia, Europe, Africa, North America, and South America found that employee depression, stress and anxiety accounted for 82.6% of all emotional health cases in Employee Assistance Programs in 2014, up from 55.2% in 2012. Also, a recent large scale, longitudinalsurvey of over 1.5 million employees in 4,500 companies across 185 countries conducted as part of the Global Corporate Challenge found that approximately 75% of the workforce experienced moderate to high stress levels — and more specifically, that 36% of employees reported feeling highly or extremely stressed at work, with a further 39% reporting moderate levels of workplace stress. The current and rising levels of stress in the workplace should be cause for concern, as there is a direct and adverse relationship between negative stress, wellness and productivity.
One important distinction to note is that not all stress is created equal and there are even some types of stress that may also have a positive effect on our well-being and productivity. “Good stress,” or what is sometimes known as “eudaemonic stress,” (derived from the Greek word “eudaemonia,” or flourishing) indicates that some types of stress can make us healthier, motivate us to be our best, and help us perform at our peak. A useful way to think about it is that stress is distributed on a bell-shaped curve. Once past the peak or high performance apex where stress motivates us, we experience the unhealthy effects of stress which, if sustained over time, lead not only to burnout but also to chronic disease.
Stress that causes us to experience difficulty or unhealthy strain — “distress” — is a major cause for concern as it directly and adversely affects personal and business success. The Global Corporate Challenge study of over 1.5 million employees globally over a 12-year period found, for example, that while 63% of extremely stressed employees reported above-average productivity, this number rises significantly to 87% amongst those who say they are not at all stressed. In the same study, 77% of extremely stressed employees also reported above-average levels of fatigue, and early warning signs of longer-term burnout. In fact, burnout is a lagging indicator of chronic stress.
by Emma Seppälä and Kim Cameron December 01, 2015 HBR
Too many companies bet on having a cut-throat, high-pressure, take-no-prisoners culture to drive their financial success.
But a large and growing body of research on positive organizational psychology demonstrates that not only is a cut-throat environment harmful to productivity over time, but that a positive environment will lead to dramatic benefits for employers, employees, and the bottom line.
Although there’s an assumption that stress and pressure push employees to perform more, better, and faster, what cutthroat organizations fail to recognize is the hidden costs incurred.
First, health care expenditures at high-pressure companies are nearly 50% greater than at other organizations. The American Psychological Association estimates that more than $500 billion is
siphoned off from the U.S. economy because of workplace stress, and 550 million workdays are lost each year due to stress on the job. Sixty percent to 80% of workplace accidents are attributed to stress, and it’s estimated that more than 80% of doctor visits are due to stress. Workplace stress has been linked to health problems ranging from metabolic syndrome to cardiovascular disease and mortality.
The stress of belonging to hierarchies itself is linked to disease and death. One study showed that, the lower someone’s rank in a hierarchy, the higher their chances of cardiovascular disease and death from heart attacks. In a large-scale study of over 3,000 employees conducted by Anna Nyberg at the Karolinska Institute, results showed a strong link between leadership behavior and heart disease in employees. Stress-producing bosses are literally bad for the heart.
Second is the cost of disengagement. While a cut-throat environment and a culture of fear can ensure engagement (and sometimes even excitement) for some time, research suggests that the inevitable stress it creates will likely lead to disengagement over the long term. Engagement in work — which is associated with feeling valued, secure, supported, and respected — is generally negatively associated with a high-stress, cut-throat culture.
And disengagement is costly. In studies by the Queens School of Business and by the Gallup Organization, disengaged workers had 37% higher absenteeism, 49% more accidents, and 60% more errors and defects. In organizations with low employee engagement scores, they experienced 18% lower productivity, 16% lower profitability, 37% lower job growth, and 65% lower share price over time. Importantly, businesses with highly engaged employees enjoyed 100% more job applications.
Lack of loyalty is a third cost. Research shows that workplace stress leads to an increase of almost 50% in voluntary turnover. People go on the job market, decline promotions, or resign. And the turnover costs associated with recruiting, training, lowered productivity, lost expertise, and so forth, are significant. The Center for American Progress estimates that replacing a single employee costs approximately 20% of that employee’s salary.
For these reasons, many companies have established a wide variety of perks from working from home to office gyms. However, these companies still fail to take into account the research. A Gallup poll showed that, even when workplaces offered benefits such as flextime and work-from-home opportunities, engagement predicted wellbeing above and beyond anything else. Employees prefer workplace wellbeing to material benefits.
In sum, a positive workplace is more successful over time because it increases positive emotions and well-being. This, in turn, improves people’s relationships with each other and amplifies their abilities and their creativity. It buffers against negative experiences such as stress, thus improving employees’
ability to bounce back from challenges and difficulties while bolstering their health. And, it attracts employees, making them more loyal to the leader and to the organization as well as bringing out their best strengths. When organizations develop positive, virtuous cultures they achieve significantly higher levels of organizational effectiveness — including financial performance, customer satisfaction, productivity, and employee engagement.
In addition to delivering tangible improvement in their lives,research shows a focus on wellbeing benefits your business by helping attract quality employees, increase productivity and engagement, and reduce attrition and absenteeism.
Head of Hay Group Insight Sam Dawson found 82% of employees scored above the norm for engagement when the organisation “demonstrated care and concern” for employee wellbeing.
Of those who said the organisation did not show care and concern, only 29% were rated as engaged.
“So, in essence, demonstrating care and concern for employees makes the difference between the vast majority being effective (engaged) versus ineffective (unengaged),” says Dawson, adding “the bottom line is that a focus on wellbeing drives staff performance.”
Research published in 2012 by A&DC found that “an individual’s level of engagement is significantly related to resilient attitudes and behaviours”, identifying five components of resilience that contribute to engagement:
• Confidence in ability to overcome obstacles (Self-Belief)
• Belief in positive outcomes (Optimism)
• Commitment to clear goals (Purposeful Direction) • Experience challenges as opportunities to learn from (Challenge Orientation) • Willingness to seek support (Collaborative Sharing)