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How to remove deadline stress among your employees

Ted Blackwater ▼ | November 5, 2018
A deadline is a nice thing if you ask any manager. That's nicely defined time when everything must be done, a nice way to see who's working and who's not. But it's also a source of great stress for your employees. Fortunately, we have a recipe for that.
Deadline stress
Stress   You should act as a combination of a boss, parent, and psychiatrist
We all know what a deadline is and we all experienced it. That's that moment when you are following your watch like you are hypnotized, working as fast as you can, hoping that you'll finish everything until the boss comes in.

In fact, we are working respecting some form of a deadline every day. Maybe we know this, maybe we don't, but that can be one of the greatest stress factors in our lives.

So, what you, a manager, can do to make things easier on your employees?

Fortunately, it's not that hard.

First, give your employee some time to rest. If you know that your employee needs 10 hours to do the job, don't start a new 10-hour period the moment the old period ends.

Every brain, yours and theirs, needs some time to rest and process information, so give them time to rest, to think about whatever they want, and to get ready for another assignment.

You may even give them time to work on their own projects or just to spend it on nothing, resting. It's like sleeping, time our brain needs to get ready for another day.

Then, give your employees time to think and focus.

If you know that they need 10 hours of active work to get the job done, don't give them 10-hour deadline. Nobody can work actively hour in, hour out. School classes don't last 10 hours without a break. You are not spending 10 hours in a gym without a break.

So, don't force your employees to work all the time on top of their abilities. They'll get sick.

Third, promote learning.

Try to set projects to include new abilities and knowledge. That will force your employees to learn new things and you'll get more capable people, but, what's important too, their brain will be focused on something else than their regular job. They will be able to look at things in a new way, and will be more relaxed along the way.

And communicate with them.

Ask them questions and give them feedback. In other words, you will force them to communicate and that has several benefits. First, they will rest from the job at hand. Second, they will be forced to look at the problem from a different perspective. And third, you will get timely information of their progress.

Now, it's easy to see what you have to do. You should act as a combination of a strict boss and a careful parent, mixed with a psychiatrist. And when you think about it, that combination is exactly what creates a great manager.