Posted on: 03 June 2021
Help your team manage the stresses of your store
Demanding customer service and sales targets can make the retail industry one of the most stressful industries to work in. Many workers may also be feeling the stress of having to return to work following periods of lockdowns or furlough.
Stress can affect both performance at the business and the personal lives of anyone who might be dealing with stress and could also lead to more serious health conditions further down the line. Take a look at some of the tips below to help you manage both your own levels of stress or the stress levels of your team.
Who can experience stress?
Anyone at any point within the hierarchy of your business can experience stress, whether this is a young worker in their first role or the owner of the business.
Different roles will have different stress triggers, for example, your young worker may find their first few interactions with demanding customers particularly stressful, whereas a senior manager may have experience in handling these situations and find their stress triggers come from demanding sales targets.
Know the signs of stress
Knowing the early indicators of stress can help you to stop the condition from becoming a much more serious problem.
Prolonged experience of stress has been found to lead to heart complications, depression and anxiety, so keep an eye out for these signs of stress to help lead a healthier life:
- Insomnia – difficulty falling or staying asleep
- Short temper – Impulsive aggressive behaviour
- Headaches – pain and discomfort in the head, scalp or neck
- Upset stomach – heartburn, bloating, nausea or diarrhoea
- Sore back – stress can tighten the shoulder and spinal muscles, with the tension causing back pain in these areas
- Job dissatisfaction – if the levels of stress outweigh the rewards of the job, it will create resentment towards the role
- Difficulty concentrating – poor short-term memory, difficulty sitting still, making poor decisions or lack of focus
- Increased errors – making mistakes you wouldn’t normally make in your professional life
Assess how stress is caused at retail businesses
Consider the way you work at your business, and if you notice that any of these processes are causing undue stress, work to change them.
Take a look at some of these simple changes you can make at your business to help relieve stress.
Train your team to work on the most pressing tasks first, and only think about other tasks once they have finished the most important ones.
You may need to provide training to some members of your team to help them identify what their most important tasks are.
In the retail industry, the most important tasks will likely be something along the lines of customer service.
Have clear roles and responsibilities
This will tie in to how your team can prioritise. Roles and responsibilities should be given to a new member of staff during their induction period, which will help your team know their priorities.
Keep an open channel of communication with your team so that if anyone is unsure of their roles and responsibilities, they can get in touch with you to talk about them. If a member of your team approaches you about their role or responsibilities, don’t assume that they should already know, and take the time to talk it over with them.
Keeping a tidy workspace can help to reduce stress, as well as keeping your business presentable to customers.
When things are tidy, kept in sections or kept in order, your products are easier to manage, helping your team to easily keep on top of things. This helps to reduce stress.
Deal with disagreements
Whether you have a disagreement between staff or an issue with a customer, knowing how to resolve the issue will help to reduce stress for all parties involved.
If you are a people manager, or responsible for a member of staff who is a people manager, you will need to have strong conflict management skills and give your person manager conflict resolution skills, to be able to deal with issues with both customers and staff.
Have a good balance between work and social life
You need your business to be successful, and your team will work hard to make sure that it is, but both you and your team need time away from work to recharge their batteries. Here are some of the ways that the people at your business can have a healthy social life away from work:
- Spend time with friends and family – Spending time with your loved ones helps you to relax and unwind from your day.
- Eat healthy food and sleep 8 hours per night – eating properly and getting a good amount of sleep are both vital to leading a healthier lifestyle.
- Spend time taking part in hobbies and interests – Interests and hobbies help to take you away from the stresses of your work life.
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We understand that no two shops are the same which is why we work with some of the UK’s most well-known insurance companies to find the right shop insurance for your business.
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The information and tools contained in this guide are of a general informational nature and should not be relied upon as being suitable for any specific set of circumstances. We have used reasonable endeavours to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the contents but the information and tools do not constitute professional advice and must not be relied upon as such. To the extent permitted by law, we do not accept responsibility for any loss which may arise from reliance on the information or tools in our Insight Hub.