4 facts about stress and resilience that are crucial for your organisation

Since 2014, stress and burn-out have been officially recognised as psychosocial risks at work. Yet the impact of (too much) stress on an organisation and the importance of resilience are often underestimated. Attention to these 4 facts about stress and resilience is therefore crucial for the stress prevention policy in your organisation.

1. Stress occurs almost everywhere

In many organisations, some employees experience a problematic exposure to stress. All too often, employees and/or supervisors minimalise this with bland platitudes like “everyone is stressed” or “it’s just part of the job”. And this is a bad thing because, if stress does not remain manageable, health complaints will be a real risk.

2. Burn-out is the result of persistent stress

Everyone experiences stress at some time, and it does not have to be a negative experience. “A healthy dose of stress can be a great incentive to get the best out of ourselves,” says Koen Van Hulst, responsible for psychosocial prevention at Mensura. “It only becomes problematic when there is no time and space left for recovery. After a stressful working day or week, it is important to relax and be able to cope with it again. If this is no longer possible, we speak of long-term, persistent stress. And this can often lead to burn-out, one of the main causes of prolonged absence.”

3. Employers play a vital role

Employers who are aware of stress invest in a stress prevention policy. This ensures negative consequences – such as less productive or absent employees – can be avoided. A psychosocial risk analysis forms the essential basis for an efficient prevention policy.

4. Not everyone has the same resilience

Resilience is a personal attribute. Not everyone can handle stress or adversity equally well. The stress perception of employees is therefore subjective, but the signals and symptoms are objectifiable and visible to everyone.

Note: in addition to the personal aspect, situational factors also determine the resilience of employees. Increasing the resilience in your organisation therefore runs on two tracks: strengthening individual resilience on the one hand, and providing a supportive, empathetic and stimulating environment on the other.