The real costs of stress:
Although many companies place their bets on a cut-throat culture to stimulate engagement and performance, they often fail to realize this is actually extremely harmful to the organization and its employees. Approximately 60% of doctor visits are due to the stress the employees resent, and about 80% of work accidents are also attributed to stress. The APA (American Psychological Association) estimated that somewhere around $500 billion was spent in 2015 alone because of workplace stress.
How exactly are organizations affected?
A stressed-out employee may be engaged at first by this competitive culture, but, in the end, most of them become disengaged. This is actually far more expensive for organizations than they realize. It’s estimated that they spend about 20% of a jobholder’s salary to find them a replacement.
The Gallup Organization affirmed that disengaged jobholders are 60% more likely to commit errors and defects, 37% more likely to be absentee, and even quit their jobs, searching for better opportunities. All these things and many others lower the profitability, the job growth, and the share price over time (about 65%).
What can companies do to improve their culture?
To improve, organizations can: foster social connections, show empathy as a way to foster resilience, promote helping each other, thus creating a self-reinforcing cycle.
Finally, they can encourage people to talk, especially about their struggles or problems. Doing so makes them feel relieved and more empowered. Managers that communicate with their employees create a culture of safety, foster better learning and performance outcomes.
This HBR article, which we highly recommend you read, highlights other ways in which you can improve your workplace:
What can we take from that?
Although there are companies that still promote this kind of highly competitive culture in disregard of the huge costs, some of them started to realize that a culture focused on wellbeing is more advantageous both for the budgets and for the employees.
To wrap everything up: a happy employee is a more productive, efficient, healthier one.