Leaving aside its long term impact on the health of individuals, stress can induce irrational and dangerous behaviours that can threaten the well being of organisations. Numerous business failures have been caused by a lack of appreciation of its cancerous impact which may sometimes be an inherent part of the particular business system, consequence of poor management, or both. It is also too often the main reason for organisational ineffectiveness, high staff turnover, or both. Sometimes this unawareness has led to mental breakdown of those involved, or worse, leading to recriminations around ‘why did you not tell us?’ or ‘How could we not know?’
For many years a rigorous measurement of stress in organisations has been unappealing to address. The well-being of individuals has too often been buried in a macho management style and those involved did not want to betray any sense of weakness as it could threaten future career moves. Any such measurement needed to be rooted in a scientific approach so as to be authentic and yet be reasonably efficient to be usable. To ensure that a sense of career risk is avoided, it needs to be able to be administered confidentially and sensitively with the goals of identification, remediation and monitoring. This is all congruent anyway with good management practice and any move to address well being is likely to result in a wide improvement in human resource management.
An approach in the form of a proven tool to assess stress has now been launched by Austen Advisory. ‘AURA’ stands for Austen Resilience Assessment, reflecting the usage of the more positive term “resilience” as an antidote to ‘stress’. The tool has as its basis, an online questionnaire for individuals in the organisation to complete, much akin to the well used approaches to assessing engagement. It uses modern psychological approaches to rank resilience on a well defined continuum from ‘Crisis’ through to “Resilient”. After analysis, the base data can then be reported in whatever organisational groupings are required (though not to prejudice confidentiality), ranked against an index and with hotspots identified. There is provision for each individual to receive a personal report with any suggested interventions. The inventory of potential interventions is being expanded all the time with many wellness remedies listed .
Should you have further interest in this topic and think it relevant to your organisation then please see a full description at https://aura.austenadvisory.com/. The site includes a request for relevant and interested organisations for a demonstration.