Prevent and deal with stress

AU considers stress a shared challenge and a joint responsibility. Even though stress affects the individual, our surroundings play an important role. On this page you find guidance and tools to prevent, detect and deal with stress.


How we prevent and detect stress

What can you do?

Prevent stress by: 

  • learning about stress and your own reactions to stress, and use this knowledge to prevent stress in daily life
  • contributing to creating a culture characterised by a sense of shared responsibility for tasks and well-being
     

Detect and react to stress by: 

  • taking a stresstest, taking your symptoms seriously, and responding to them by initiating a dialogue with your manager about workload and prioritisation of tasks
  • use your colleagues, occupational health and safety representative, union representative, personal network and possibly AU’s offer of psychological counselling

What can you do as a colleague?

Prevent stress by:

  • taking responsibility for the department's/unit's joint tasks and well-being in everyday life
  • contributing to creating a culture characterised by openness in relation to stress and well-being
     

Detect and react to stress by:

  • initiating a dialogue, if you notice a colleague showing signs of stress, and express your concern:
    • contact your colleague directly (ask questions to find out whether your colleague has asked for help/support and where)
    • contact the relevant manager (if the colleague has not contacted the manager)

What can you do as a manager?

Prevent stress by:

  • focusing on prioritisation and workload among the employees on a daily basis
  • making sure to have the required knowledge and skills to be able to deal with stress
  • making sure that the department/unit’s procedures for working with well-being and stress prevention are clear and brought into focus on an ongoing basis
  • systematically asking questions about well-being and stress at the annual SDDs
     

Detect and react to stress by:

  • entering into dialogue with the employee when concerned
  • developing a plan for how to reduce workload and pressure and how to prioritise tasks/time
  • informing (if it is considered relevant) about the option of psychological counselling
  • analysing triggering factors at the workplace, also with a view to preventing stress among the other employees
     

Also take care of yourself:

  • Prioritise stress preventing activites for yourself
  • Be a rolemodel

How we deal with stress

Are you stressed?

Do you experience reduced working capacity or illness due to stress?

Then it is important that you: 

Is your colleague stressed?

As colleagues to somebody suffering from stress, it is importatnt that you talk about:

  • How you can support the colleague suffering from stress (e.g. coordinate contact/flowers etc.)
  • How you can contribute to ensuring a healthy culture, in which you work together to support well-being and performance of tasks during the colleague’s absence.

Are you the manager of a stressed employee?

As the manager of an employee suffering from stress, it is important that you: 

  • Help initiate relevant support by encouraging the employee to contact:
  • Arrange follow-up and follow AU’s procedure for handling absence due to illness
  • Focus on communication and prioritisation of tasks in the department/unit while taking the other employees into account

Tools

Toolbox for managers and management teams

Talk to your employees at 1:1 meetings during the year and at SSDs

 

Put stress on the agenda at department and management team meetings

Use the Danish Working Environment Authority’s guidelines on heavy workloads and time pressure

If employees work intensively or for several hours to complete their professional tasks, the employer’s most important obligations are explained in the Danish Working Environment Authority’s guidelines for heavy workloads and time pressure (in Danish).
These guidelines explain how you can:

  • identify, assess and prevent heavy workloads and time pressure
  • supervise tasks to ensure they are carried out responsibly
     

Increase your knowledge about stress

These materials are currently only available in Danish:

  • Folder with recommendations for managers: Forstå og forebyg stress
  • Article on working with stress from multiple perspectives: Helhedsorienteret stressindsats
  • Book: Lederens stresshåndbog. Styrk dine lederkompetencer, når det gælder stress. Af Martini M, Krarup M & Tøttrup CA. Dansk Psykologisk Forlag. 2017

Toolbox for the Occupational Health and Safety Organisation (AMO)

The materials linked to on this page are currently only available in Danish.


Increase your knowledge about stress

Put stress on the agenda

Use the Danish Working Environment Authority’s guidelines on heavy workloads and time pressure

If employees work intensively or for several hours to complete their professional tasks, the employer’s most important obligations are explained in the Danish Working Environment Authority’s guidelines for heavy workloads and time pressure.
These guidelines explain how you can:

  • identify, assess and prevent heavy workloads and time pressure
  • supervise tasks to ensure they are carried out responsibly