Stress Awareness Month 2022
April is stress awareness month. The theme for this year’s campaign is “community”.
With the challenges that we have faced during the pandemic, many individuals have seen the importance of community and how much a lack of social interaction can contribute to stress and wellbeing.
We’re launching a campaign that celebrates this event. We hope to inspire other companies to take the lead and boost workplace wellbeing.
Over the month we will be publishing resources that will promote awareness of the effects of stress and how we can tackle them. By managing stress correctly, we can invest in ourselves and our team.
A recruiter's guide to recognising and managing stress
Stress Awareness Month: Combating potential stress triggers when dealing with post interview nerves, ways to destress when beginning a new job.
We’ve all been there. Sweaty palms, repetitive outfit checks, online company research – it’s all part of the recruitment process. Statistics show that 93% of people feel anxious during or before an interview. And although it’s normal to feel nervous, a great career opportunity shouldn’t leave candidates feeling anxious or stressed.
We all know how nerve-wracking it is! But job opportunities and interviews are a great learning curve, and can help you develop skills that are bound to come in handy in the future.
Although as recruiters, we can try to create safe and comfortable environments for our candidates to feel at ease, we understand that it can still be a stressful experience for them.
As recruiters, we need candidates to know that we understand. Anxiety and stress are common factors that cause candidates to no-show to interviews or cancel. While we wish this didn’t happen, 28% of job applicants ghost potential employers, and 7% fail to appear on their first day after landing the job role. So, what can we do to support future employees?
Firstly, much like Divvy recruiter Stephanie Yu comments, being considerate of one another is a good place to start. Understanding interview anxiety is a great way to reassure, validate, and comfort candidates – regardless of whether they get the job. As recruiters, we know that job phone calls can be stressful enough, so by keeping a friendly tone of voice, we can make the first interview of the hiring process seem like a casual chat about what the job role entails.
To create excitement, motivation, and interest, we should be clear and transparent when describing job roles, salaries, and expectations. Keeping a candidate informed of where they are in the hiring process will most likely keep them engaged and more relaxed. Our job isn’t to make candidates nervous, but to deliver opportunities for our company and future employees.
It’s also essential to validate and understand how candidates feel, especially when we offer them a formal interview. Being nervous is normal, but feeling overly anxious could signify a lack of confidence. It’s key to reassure applicants that if we offer them an interview, we truly believe in their potential.
So, as recruiters, what advice can we give to interviewees? Well, it depends on each individual. Stress can affect us all differently, but that doesn’t mean we cannot understand it.
An interview may feel like a test, but it’s really an opportunity to decide if the company interviewing you is the right match for your career goals. Here are some useful techniques that can help your applicants prepare for interviews, and avoid stress in scenarios that are bound to bring a whole new world of opportunities.
Ensuring you get a good night’s sleep the night before your interview will help your day go smoothly. Having enough rest will keep you attentive, alert and focused, and also help you stay away from caffeine – an anxiety inducer. Being sleep deprived can negatively affect your health, resulting in irritation and loss of concentration. It’s common to struggle to sleep when you have an exciting interview the next day. It would be a great idea to practise meditation, play relaxing music, or do some exercise to tire you out.
Be honest! Say that you are nervous – it’s a great ice breaker. Interviewers will often ring you for an initial introduction before inviting you to a more formal interview, which will help you feel less anxious as you will know what to expect. But, there is no shame in admitting what you are feeling. Most interviewers will sympathise and understand, offering reassurance if needed – they were also on the other side of the desk at one point in their career.
We asked Jenny Jones, ETL Global UK’s head of resourcing, what advice she would give new recruits for their interviews:
“Do your prep! Have a look at the company website, think about what questions you may be asked and how you might answer these and have some questions ready for the interviewers. Being prepared will help you feel a little more in control and (hopefully!) a little more relaxed.”
However, it isn’t just future employees and interview candidates that feel stressed. It’s also new recruits that have been offered the job. New job anxiety can cause sleep loss, loss of focus, fatigue and low self-esteem. It’s easy to fall into the trap of imposter syndrome, but you can reassure new starters that they’re competent and talented enough for the role if they’ve already been through the hiring process and were chosen for the job.
Remind your candidates to prep in advance before their first day: a planned outfit, bag, food, and materials to complete relevant tasks. When the first day rolls around, they can be relaxed and fully ready for an exciting new career.
Here at ETL Global UK, it is part of our culture to introduce new starters with a warm welcome. Conducting inductions is essential to feel included and wanted. This also gives employees the chance to know us as a business and their future work colleagues. We also offer various opportunities for staff to bond with one another to create a sense of community in the workplace – from ordering breakfast together every Friday, to celebrating birthdays and special events. This promotes a healthy balance of workload and at-work-friendships, which in the long run, help manage stress.
Stress and nervousness are natural emotions that arise from opportunities and changes. By managing stress correctly, we can invest in ourselves and our team. Celebrate Stress Awareness Month (S.A.M) with us by bringing a culture of acceptance and well-being into the workplace. For more information on S.A.M, please email: [email protected]