A leader can experience his share of stress. But how can he reduce the stress… he causes to others? This article does not want to stress you 😉. You will find ideas for having a positive impact on others, in part, by reducing the stress you can cause, even if you are in good faith.
First, know that stress is not something you want to eradicate completely. What?
Stress is part of your physical functioning and serves to protect you and keep you alive. That said, if you’re stressed because you’re running late, or your internet connection is slow. Know that your life is not in danger! It’s that your brain interprets specific external signals. So, when you know these signals, or these stress-generating factors, you can better manage your stress and decrease the stress you may cause to others.
Let it be said, if you are stressed, it impacts the people around you: your family, your colleagues, and your teams.
Let’s see what you can do to better manage stress how, as a manager, you can minimize the stress around you.
How does stress appear?
Stress occurs when one or more of the following factors are present:
- Lack of control.
- Unforeseen things.
A threatened ego, reputation, or image.
Each person has more sensitive factors than others. The better you know yourself and others, the more proactive you can be in reducing your stress, or the stress of those around you.
As a leader, you have two powers:
Better manage your stress by emphasizing what you control, better anticipating the unexpected, developing your skills, developing better self-knowledge and self-confidence.
Have a more positive impact on your teams and colleagues by acting proactively on the factors that can reduce their stress.
What can you do as a leader to reduce stress?
Remember the principle that the stress-creating factors are lack of control, unforeseen, novelty and threatened ego.
So logically (well…and this is scientifically validated by Ms. Sonia Lupin, Phd.), all you can do to:
- give a sense of control
- better anticipate or better communicate contingencies
- bring the novelty at the right time, or in the right quantity
- consider ego and reputation
- are a plus for your team and your colleagues!
Here are some ideas and your request from the brain coach is to find even more ideas that you can leave in comments and above all, put into practice!
- Ideas to reduce stress
- Provide leeway on
- The deadlines.
- The contents.
- The definition of things to do.
- personal time management.
Other elements that give the other a sense of control over their task or in their role.
Give clear expectations on projects: what is the budget (money or time), what is the ultimate priority, what are the priority features, etc.
Clarify roles and responsibilities for people in general, but also in meetings, in specific projects. It doesn’t have to be complex; you can even ask someone to tell you what they understand about their role… and you just have to adjust! No big roles and responsibilities writing project here! 😉
Avoid uncertainty in a team member’s performance by offering recognition and feedback frequently. It doesn’t have to be formal necessarily, but it does need to be present and frequent. By frequently, I mean as often as weekly or monthly.
Manage change better by being better prepared, analyzing impacts, and communicating consciously. For example: if you are unsure of something important, wait before speaking. I see several managers who need to talk, and who unwittingly give information that generates uncertainty among their teams. If you’re in brainstorming mode, find someone else! A colleague, a member of your network, an executive coach, a mentor! In short, a person who will not be destabilized.
Change your mind less often! In other words, if you are aligned on a vision and goals and your change of mind is about “how” to get to the goal in order to be more efficient or more benevolent, it will be understandable. In case your vision is not clear or understood, your changes of ideas will be stressful! To reduce stress, clarify your vision and communicate it! Communication works!
Do not allow rumors or conflicts to persist. Take care of the ambiance and aim for a healthy and non-threatening environment.
You have more control than you think over the stress that may be on your team, or that you may be generating without even realizing it. The idea here is not to awaken a sense of guilt in you, but rather to create an openness so that you can have a more positive impact around you, and thus increase performance AND well-being.