Dealing with Anxiety in the Workplace

Work anxiety – UGH. I don’t think there is anything worse than having anxiety about a work situation. It can hit you the night before or the minute you walk into your office.  You can’t focus, tasks seem impossible to finish and the more you sit and think about everything, the less you get done.

Now, I can’t guarantee that I can completely relieve you of anxiety, but I can try and help you with some simple things to calm you down. Also, always remember – you are not alone. You are going to be okay, and the anxiety will pass. 

First of all breathe. I can remember sometimes when reacting to a hectic situation, I would honestly forget to breathe. I would realize 20 seconds later that I have been holding my breath which causes my body to go into panic DOUBLING the anxiety.  Don’t do that. It isn’t good (or healthy).  Breathe. Close your eyes and take 4 big deep breaths in through your nose, out through your mouth.  Think only about the air going in and out.  It will help.

Write down how you feel and then go to your to-do list and complete the two easiest tasks. After the two tasks are complete, go back and re-examine the feeling you wrote down and most of the time you will realize that you already feel much better.  If you are still anxious, write out the feeling again and go on with your next two tasks. When you write out your anxiety you can see that your mind is actually over thinking    your problem is not as great as it seems. 

Anxiety at work is hard but it is controllable if you face it.  Difficulties in life happen in the workplace, the same as they happen in your home life.  The best thing to do is face the anxiety, write down how you feel or talk to somebody.

Always remember – you aren’t alone.  If the anxiety is so bad you feel you need a break  – call a supportive friend.  Take a break from work and call someone because most of the time just talking about it will make you feel better. 

Deckercise

Before beginning my position as Office Manager/ Junior Recruiter, I worked a lot in the Hospitality. I was very busy, and became used to working long shifts, always on my feet running. In my new role, I am equally as busy, and my mind is always running, but my feet are now fastened to the ground for a good 6-8 hours a day. I love my office and working in one has many perks, a setback I now face though is trying find time to stay active through the day. I have come up with a few tips for those of you that feel the same about sitting all day. These activities are not only good for your physical health but also a great way to regain your focus during a busy day.

I recently read this article written by Madeline Bachelder  called  Deskercise: 9 Easy Stretches You Can Do at Your Desk” . I was inspired! Not only by the fantastic name “Deskercise” but by the fact that these little stretches throughout the day can make such a huge difference. Here are a few of my Favorite Deskercises:

TORSO TWIST – Cross your right leg over your left leg, then place your right elbow on top of your thigh, just above the knee. Take a deep breath in and turn your head to look over you right shoulder, and twist your upper body at the same time. Repeat this with the opposite side and you should feel the tension release in your upper body.

BACK ARCH– This stretch is completed standing. Place your legs hip- width apart and hands on the back of your hips. Stand up tall and slowly arch your back, while gently tilting you head back. This should release some tension through-out your back.

NECK ROLL– Sit or stand up tall, tilt your head from side to side pulling your ear towards your shoulder. Slowly and gently roll your neck all the way around. I enjoy a full 360-degree neck roll- I have heard this can be bad for your neck, do whatever you are comfortable with. This stretch releases tension in the neck and shoulders.

Deskercise is great for those of you who put too much time in at the office. If the closest you come to the outside world during your busy work day is looking out the window between reports, then you are exactly who I am talking about. Although I admire your determination, next time take a minute break and deskercise!

The next activities I have are for those of you that feel as though you do not have enough hours in the day! I always want to be active but recently I have found that after a long day I am just too tired. I thought to myself, when can I find time earlier in the day when I am still full of energy to be active. It wasn’t going to be in the morning- my 5:30am wake – up is already early enough. It couldn’t be at night because I am typically exhausted by the time I get home. So, I decided on using my lunch break as my work-out time! Now it would be a lie if I said I did this every day, but 2-3 times I week I try and run on my hour lunch break. I work downtown Vancouver, so my favorite lunch activity is to run along Coal Harbour, the view and the atmosphere is incredible.  On the days it rains- which in Vancouver is a lot. I will run the stairs in my building, the view isn’t quite as nice but the end result is similar- it is a hell of a work out! I find these two activities not only keep me active and get me out of the office, but they also help me regain focus if I have had a super busy morning.

It is easy to get sucked into a long 8-9 hour work day, eating take- out for lunch and if you’re like me wine for dinner. But it is so very important to stay active and stretch. Whether you are just beginning your office career or have been working in an office for years, deskercise, running, and stair climbing are great practices to begin in your daily routine!

Tips for a Successful Skype Job Interview

With advances in technology, cellular and the internet Video Interviews are becoming a stage in the recruiting process. Recruiters and interviewers are using Skype, Face time and other means to conduct Video Interviews. In the job search process get your game on for video interviews. Here are a few suggestions:

  1. Be Technology Ready.
    • Have computers, laptops or phones fully charged. Check your connection or signal hours prior to the video interview to ensure that all will be a go.  You may need to relocate for stronger connections.
  2. Practice
    • Practice spending time on Skype, facetime or video with a friend; become prepared on screen. It is daunting, especially in the beginning to see yourself on screen.
  3. Dress Professionally.
    • Dress as if you were going to an in person interview. Be fully dressed head to toe.  No pajama’s allowed!  Dress up and get in the game; you will be more confident and appear more professional.
  4. Have your resume, references and certifications present.
    • Don’t be surprised if an interview or recruiter asks you to show them your documents or email copies.
  5. Have your notes ready and on hand.
    • Make notes of your highlights and achievements. Do this by writing down your successes and be able to quantify these.
  6. Be a Story teller. Be prepared with stories and examples of your successes.
    • Have stories and samples of your past success and achievements.
    • Practice these stories ahead of time with a friend.
    • Keep it light and a little humor will be good.
  7. Expect the Unexpected.
    • Don’t be surprised if there is a break in technology. Take a deep breath and be patient.  Be prepared for a quick apology and the interview will resume.
    • You can easily apologize for any disruptions – “I am sorry for this disruption, let me begin again.”

Good luck with a video interview. Feel free to call our office or email for assistance with interviewing or any questions you may have.

Those Millenials…..

Employers today must face the fact that the majority of new recruits to their workforce are the so called ‘millennials’.   Loosely speaking millennials are young people who are reaching or have reached adulthood in the early decades of the 21st century.  They have grown up in a technological culture that could scarcely have been imagined by earlier generations.  Instant access to information, instant communication and instant connectivity has resulted in a new generation that is NOT afraid to speak up and share their opinion.

So don’t be surprised when a millennial that you have recently hired speaks up about the conditions in the workplace or offers suggestions about their job that are far outside your comfort zone.  Don’t fall into the trap of blaming all your workforce problems or new ideas causing resistance to change to change on millennials.

The millennial trait of speaking up and fighting for one’s beliefs is spreading throughout our culture and that is a good thing.  Speaking up is the key to solving abuse and discrimination of all types.  Be aware that this is the new workplace culture.  Don’t fight it; be aware that this new workplace culture can work to your advantage.  If you get your new millennial employees engaged in your company’s goals, then they will fight just as hard for your company’s success.

I recently went to the RecruitCon2017 conference where Andrea and I heard many great tricks and tactics and new exciting ways to recruit but I personally found the last talk of the conference the best one to date. Not only was the speaker passionate, but she was also realistic and touched on actual struggles every employer faces with the new workforce.

In this world of instant social media and platforms telling you how to act and what to expect out of life, how do you keep people engaged? The simple talk was all about keeping employees engaged in achieving your company’s success.

So here are some tips to keep employees engaged to help your company succeed:

Make sure you have the right employee to start with. Figure out WHY you need to hire someone and why his or her role is important. Many companies believe they need to hire someone but don’t really understand the purpose or the benefits of the new employee’s role. Write down your understanding of their workplace role and what you expect and it will help you recruit the right person.

The next step is to make sure the company’s goals and the goals of the new hire are aligned. Make the employee excited to work in your company – and, understand that  common goal setting is the key to motivation. It might seem tedious to sit down with an employee and set goals, but in the long run it will help him or her stay engaged and feel valued.

Say thank you. Even an email after the first week saying “Thank you for joining our company; how your week was?” will be appreciated.  Showing appreciation to an individual is important and the employee will understand that his or her work is appreciated and noticed.  Company bosses belonging to previous generations might never have experienced “warm and fuzzy” interactions with their own bosses and may find it difficult to empathize with expectations for the personal touch that millennials expect. But it is worth the effort to personalize your relationship with new employees if you want to retain them in your company.

Open up two way communication right away. As soon as they get the job – assign them a buddy. This will ensure a communication channel is always open; the employee will know you are listening and feel engaged.

These are just a couple ideas to help companies stay connected to their millennial staff and help understand the importance of communication and openness. Stay authentic and don’t try to be like older established companies. Take the time to be the company that people want to work for!

Any questions or comments? Love to hear from you!

Things You Should Never Say On Your First Day at Work

 

  1. Do not ask Questions inquiring for a raise, promotion, time off or expenses.
  • These comments should be discussed at a probation review.
  1. Do not ask or comment about office relationships, marital status or flirt with your co-workers.
  • Wait until you have developed and earned respect.
  1. Do not tell your co-works that you know how to do things better. Don’t be a “know it all”.
  • Recognize that although you may be knowledgeable, you may come across as rude or inappropriate.
  • You must be able to adapt to new policies and procedures.
  1. Do not turn a lunch invitation down.
  • Take initial opportunities to get to know your boss and colleagues. Remember this is there first impression of you.
  1. Do not bring up religion.
  • In our multi-cultural society everyone is entitled to their own personal beliefs.
  1. Do not speak of any personal problems / drama.
  • This is a time you can leave any or all baggage at home.
  • Do not speak of relationships, family issues, or debt.

If you have any questions about this please feel free to call our office.