Human Resources News & Insights

3 ways to help an employee going through a rough patch

With busy days and never ending to-do lists, it makes sense to be focused solely on your own productivity. 

But when other employees are struggling with their workloads, it can end up negatively impacting you and the workplace.

Lending a hand

When it comes to reaching out to someone going through a hard time, there are ways to show you care without overstepping.

Here’s what Inc.com contributor Art Markman says you should do:

1. Address what you’ve observed. The first step is letting the employee know you’ve noticed they’ve been a little off their game lately. Maybe they seem more frustrated or stressed than usual. Find a good time to pull them aside and have a chat over coffee.

The employee may not want to open up to you about their problems, but that’s OK. By bringing this up, you let the employee know you’re there to talk if they want to.

2. Validate how they’ve been feeling. A lot of employees try to hide when they’re struggling because they don’t want people to question their ability. It’s possible they’re questioning their own capabilities as well.

Speak openly about times you’ve had issues staying focused or getting your work done. It’s important to let the person know they’re not alone in their struggle.

3. Make a plan. When the employee does open up, you can make the conversation productive. Help them come up with a plan.

If the person is overwhelmed by a big project, try to break it down into more manageable parts and help them come up with a list of things they can accomplish day by day. Making a solid plan will help the employee refocus.

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