You have noticed that your employee's motivation is low mainly because of stress due to unmanageable workload. What can you do? The fastest conclusion to reach is that there is a problem with time management- and employees do not understand how to manage their time well. Signing them up for a time management class seems simple enough and you may think it will yield effective results. However, what if time management is not the underlying issue?
The problem may be simple: too much work. An overburdened employee is one who does not slack off, is focused on work with minimal breaks but yet cannot manage to complete all the tasks at hand. If an employee is consistently overworked, she/he may slowly become disengaged or disheartened. This will lead to poor workload management and anxiety at work.
As a manager, it is your job to be aware of the symptoms of bad workload management, as discussed above.
Now that you have recognized the issue, analyze the situation.
- Is this workload issue contained to one employee or is it seen throughout the entire department?
- Does the problem occur regularly or all the time?
Sit down and take the time to answer these questions because it will determine what action to take.
If this is an individual problem with employees, meet with them and talk about what happened. By touching the base, you will understand / her point of view. If the employee is going through personal problems, you can consider reducing some of the stress by distributing the workload to other employees for a little bit.
However, if some employees feel that they are overworked or if this problem occurs more often than the typical fluctuations, additional measures should be taken. A possible solution might be to analyze whether you, as a manager, encourage workers or compensate them fairly. You want to make sure that your employees enjoy working with you and do not leave.