You eliminate work stress with an approach at organizational and employee level. But how do you determine which interventions are needed? I advise you to use the 5 step plan of Professor Van Vuuren for this. This is a good way to structurally address work stress and determine your interventions. Read below how you can apply this in your organization or team.
First of all, create a sense of urgency: the negative impact of stress on your organization must become clear. Employees have complaints. Absence threatens or rises. Gradient increases. Work stress feels like a problem. Then make a good analysis first. What is going on? What problems are there in your organization? Why do employees suffer from work stress? What is the impact on the organization? Try to understand the causes of work stress. The step Explore refers to doing quantitative and qualitative research into work stress of your employees.
Then you create support for the management, so that there is space for investments for example. What is the most important to be influenced problem or opportunity for your organization with regard to stress? The step Inform is about briefing others: you communicate what your company is doing in the field of reducing work stress. By sharing knowledge, the awareness of the current and desired situation is increased. Moreover, your employees become more involved with the subject and they have the opportunity to influence the measures. Initial changes by employees have a longer and stronger effect on the well-being of employees than measures from above.
The step Vitalize is about thinking up and applying vitalizing interventions. As an organization you can promote the vitality of your employees by providing them with sufficient work resources (job resources). For example, by helping managers to better recognize work stress and make it possible to discuss it. Or by increasing stress management skills and knowledge about healthy lifestyle among your employees. Vitalising interventions are aimed at strengthening the capacity of your employees.
In the step Alleviate, interventions are aimed at reducing workload. You can achieve this by improve the content of the work or the working conditions. Employees can adjust their tasks, work approach and work environment within the possibilities offered by their organization (job crafting). Your organization can also arrange certain job requirements in a job differently (job redesign). The interventions from step 3 and 4 together strengthen the balance between workload and work capacity.
In the step Depart, measures are aimed at increasing internal and external mobility. If a work-related stress problem can not be reduced at individual level, despite all the interventions, it is possible to consult other suitable work within or outside the organization in consultation.