Workfront's Jada Balster writes about how giving marketers increased visibility can alleviate stress.
Tight deadlines, big budgets and demanding clients – with all this in mind, it’s no wonder that UK marketers are stressed. It’s a tough business, and those working in the industry are continuously up against it. Whether it's in-house or agency-side, the rigours of looking after large sums of money, constantly engaging with all areas of a business, and achieving results with a lack of resources can take their toll. A recent survey from Workfront revealed that 71% of those interviewed admitted to feeling burnt out at work. The problem with that is that a tired, stressed workforce - whether you're marketer, finance worker, or nurse - can lead to mistakes, and contribute to a negative working environment.
More worryingly, the same report found that of those UK marketing professionals questioned about workplace stress, two-thirds (66%) expect it to increase in the future. What does that mean for marketing? Chaos, breakdowns, and ineffective working. Most of us already work long enough hours as it is (an extra five hours a week on average), and certainly don’t need workplace stresses adding to our overtime. However, there are solutions for every problem – often more than one – and this is no exception. Planning, communicating, and taking regular breaks have all been proven to ease the burden of workplace stress. As the saying goes: "If you fail to prepare, then prepare to fail."
There's no doubt that planning can sometimes be pushed to the bottom of your to-do list, especially when faced with looming deadlines. But, ultimately, it can mean the difference between comfortably executing a huge, successful marketing campaign, or pulling a metaphorical tractor through the mud. It's the company’s responsibility to ensure deadlines and KPIs are met, but individuals must also be willing to listen and learn. We all work in communications, but we aren’t always great at communicating internally.
Keeping it simple is the easiest way to solve this problem. Put time-saving procedures in place and embrace organisational tools/technologies that help to manage and condense your team's workloads. Invest in training and listen to feedback from the rest of the team to ensure nobody feels unappreciated.
The survey also found that marketers really appreciate tools and structures that alleviate stress and worry. In fact, when asked how their employers could help with everyday stresses the three top answers were:
• More involvement in the decision making process (39%)
• Introducing tools to enable a good support system (39%)
• Wanting professional training on how to structure their day productively (38%)
It's not rocket science that these are things we should be taking into account, but they can often be overlooked. Fortunately, there are forward-thinking marketing agencies and enterprises alike starting to hone in on these. For instance, businesses like Homeserve and Foolproof are turning to cutting-edge, technologically-rich marketing suites to enable teams to fully collaborate and solve productivity and communication problems. Not being afraid to take risks and embracing new technologies will take you one step closer to building a happier marketing team. After all, a happy office is usually a much more productive one.
Jada Balster is EMEA Marketing Director at Workfront.
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