A Christmas work party, retirement party or even team bonding events – these are all positive and exciting events that occur in almost any workplace in the country. Opportunities for employers and employees to bond and grow together over a glass of celebratory tipple. However, for those wrestling with addiction, these light-hearted engagements can become a steep tipping point.
The struggle with alcohol addiction is one that affects every part of a persons’ life, including their workplace. Each work environment is responsible for ensuring the safety of its employees through general health and safety education and policies.
By providing Alcohol Awareness Training (AAT), you can highlight any potential risks relating to alcohol and addiction, providing the duty of care that is expected of any employer. By investing in AAT as part of the wellbeing policies already established in your workplace, you will support the pursuit of healthy lifestyle choices, as well as working to effect behavioural changes that reduce the risk of alcohol related issues. In the long-term, this will help your workplace grow as a supportive, professional environment, fostering a culture where those who need it can find support, information and access to appropriate resources.
How Could Alcohol Addiction Impact Your Workplace?
Addiction creates a stream of stresses and problems for those caught in its throes. Mental health, financial issues, broken relationships, and legal problems are just some of the impact’s alcohol addiction can have on a persons’ life. It is only natural that these effects would surface in the workplace, influencing everyone in their orbit. When regularly using a substance like alcohol, the body becomes used to, and even dependent on, the substance to function normally. This can literally alter a person’s brain chemistry, influencing their personality, memory, and bodily functions. Then there’s the health implications, such as abnormal heart rates, kidney and liver damage, and even heart attacks. With the deterioration of physical health, an individual’s work and personal relationships are commonly diminished as a result.
Alcohol has also been proven to increase the likelihood of anti-social behaviour in the workplace, escalating conflicts and workplace injuries that were otherwise avoidable. Hangovers leave high concentrations of alcohol in the bloodstream, impacting work attendance, performance, and relationships with co-workers. Given the incontrovertible evidence that alcohol addiction can drastically impact a professional environment, AAT is a sound strategy for improving productivity and success for individuals.
Does Your Workplace Have an “Unhealthy” Alcohol Culture?
Easy access to alcohol is not the only indicator of a workplace with the potential for alcohol-related risks. A culture that includes expectations and attitudes around drinking at work events can heavily influence employee alcohol consumption. In turn, this impacts the health and safety, and overall success and efficiency, of the workplace.
An unsafe work environment with these risks can result in injury, or even death. This is particularly true of workplaces involving the use of heavy machinery or driving vehicles. Perhaps you are a client facing workplace, or one that involves communication with many stakeholders. In this instance, alcohol addiction can drastically impact behaviour, potentially causing employees to act in an unprofessional manner towards customers and their colleagues.
What Can You Do to Offer Support in Your Workplace?
Having access to different, relevant workplace training and a support professional will help individuals struggling with alcohol addiction recognise and address their problems. Getting in touch with a qualified life coach is a great way to find the support needed to start the journey to beat addiction. They can help set goals, work through any road-bumps and provide information to further prepare you for the challenges ahead.
By providing access to training and life coaches, like NextThought, your workplace can benefit from years of collective experience and thoroughly researched knowledge. Get in touch with NextThought now to take the first step to a healthier, happier future for your workplace.