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Yes, workaholics damage your company - here’s how

Isn't being the first in and the last out of the office a good thing? That’s what we’ve always been hearing. It gets you the attention and offers you the time to advance in your job as companies cherish such diligent employees. But that’s not all true.

As it turns out, perfectionist workaholics may be more damaging to your company than you realize. Among poor health, absence from work, poor productivity, workaholism can have a huge negative impact on the health and performance of your business. Here’s more that you should know about it:

Tiredness kills on the road and at the job

It is a common misconception in a work culture that the more you stay at your work desk the more you will be achieving, when in reality you might be accomplishing less. The more refreshed your workers are, the more efficient and effective their work, professional conduct and output will be. If someone is working very hard, make sure they’re taking enough breaks. Facilitating some physical or recreational activity to shift their attention away from the work can be a huge bonus.

Taking a break from work can immensely improve one’s decision-making minimizing the mental fatigue that occurs by staying long hours at the work space. Furthermore, prolonged working hours can damage a person’s ability to solve problems and thus make mistakes more often and also experience burnout more often - which can lead to absenteeism.

Workaholics boost productivity? No, it’s just a stereotype at best.

Workaholics keep themselves convinced that it is worth it to stay at a work-desk for long hours believing it is productive while according to research, this is just a stereotype associated with workaholic culture. It has nothing to do with performance and productivity at large. Even if you observe that an employee is passionate about their job and spends a lot of time doing it, they might do better if they had more breaks.

They disturb the delegation of responsibilities at the workplace

Workahiolism s is a problem and it can damage your company’s work-flow between employees. Workaholics find it difficult to delegate responsibilities and tasks to others. When a workaholic employee is given something to do, they may be able to delegate the tasks occasionally, but mostly, the ‘if a work is worth accomplishing, do it yourself' mentality might drive them towards becoming excessively isolated. This skill to distribute responsibilities and trusting others to do their work is critical for a company to function properly and is especially important in management roles.

Workaholics tend to damage the team morale and company culture

Workaholics are mostly putting their health at risk while working continuously without taking breaks. The worst thing about this is that they're not only affecting themselves but also their co-workers. Some workaholics tend to be very neurotic and chaotic in their work and often stress their co-workers needlessly by creating crisis and throwing temper tantrums. Hence, even sending an email to their co-workers after excessive bouts of overt stress and rushing others can add to the stress of their fellow colleagues. This negative environment of stress and rushing often forces employees to work extra-time too even when they’ve gone home.

Furthermore, if any of the managers is a workaholic too, the work environment becomes exponentially toxic and workers may feel like they can't have any time off and have to work all the time.

Workaholics create unnecessary pressure and stress

In the US businesses pay an extra cost of $300 billion in lost productivity, due to the unnecessary stress that their employees face in corporate culture. Many workaholics have perfectionistic tendencies and like everything to be perfect, which can lead to extra pressure on their colleagues. They have to work extra time neglecting any work boundaries - which leads burnout, affecting the whole organization negatively.

If there’s a person in your organization who tends to have a similar work ethic, make sure that you clearly define the kind of work culture that you require at your place and offer support for your workaholic employees. It’s important to not only discourage such behavior but also to proactively reward people who maintain their own health and have a positively influence their teammates while ensuring productivity in a healthy way.

6 ways you can reduce workaholism at your company

As a manager you can undertake some of the following initiatives to have an efficient and healthy workplace:

  • Try to implement a 40 hour per week model.

  • Take care of your employees and do not overburden them.

  • Keep your expectations and schedules realistic when undergoing a project.

  • Empower your employees to speak up when workloads become overwhelming and unmanageable given the time constraints.

  • Encourage the healthy behaviour of workers. Provide healthy snacks in the office, and encourage employees to get some fresh air and take a walk outside.

  • Keep remote work or flexible work as an option for your employees. This can greatly reduce stress and increase efficiency even if allowed for one day per week.

  • Encourage no-work weekends and holidays. No exchanging of work-related emails from Friday (after work hours) till Monday.


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