The Hidden Dangers of Financial Stress on Your Employees
The real issue at the heart of financial challenges: stress. The Financial Health Institute defines financial stress as “a condition that is the result of financial and/or economic events that create anxiety, worry, or a sense of scarcity, and is accompanied by a physiological stress response.” The Institute goes on to describe “Chronic Financial Stress,” as ongoing (yet frequently intermittent) financial stress.
Typically, as financial stress increases, a person’s state of financial health decreases, creating a damaging effect on physical health. Chronic financial stress is the most common intersection where financial and physical health collide.
Symptoms of Financial Stress
The impact of financial stress on one’s physical health is far-reaching. Healthline.com, the #1 health information site in the U.S. with over 70 million visits per month, states that stress and anxiety can have several physical manifestations:
- Weakened immune system
- High blood pressure
- Extreme fatigue
- Panic attacks
- Upset stomach
While these may seem like personal issues for employees to manage on their own, these ailments will affect an employee’s productivity and focus at work. If they are experiencing any one of these symptoms, they will be preoccupied while at work if they have not already chosen to take a sick day. If the employee does not have access to paid sick leave, the stressful conditions are further compounded.
A John Hancock study revealed that financial stress is triggering physical and psychological symptoms like anxiety and sleeplessness for roughly 60% of workers.
A Solution to Cash Flow Problems
One of the most common challenges for employees dealing with financial stress is managing their cash flow. The periods in between paydays can be fraught with anxiety and waiting until money hits their accounts to pay for bills throughout the month.
One rapidly growing service that gives employees more control over their cash flow is early wage access. Early wage access providers, like FinFit, give employees the ability to access their earned wages before payday. When supported by appropriate financial education and guidance around responsible usage, early wage access programs can help employees plan ahead to manage bill due dates.
Often, employees have the funds coming – the funds just aren’t available when they need them. Instead of missing payments, being hit with late payment fees, or taking on additional high-cost debt just to pay the bills, early wage access is a valuable employee benefit.
If employees are struggling to make ends meet, pay student loans, or cover an aging parent’s financial needs, it can be daunting to think rationally and make level-headed financial decisions. Even positive transitions such as starting a family, buying a new home or planning for retirement can induce stress.
This is where a financial coach can be helpful. These certified financial counselors provide nurturing guidance and expert recommendations to employees going through major transitions.
FinFit offers free one-on-one financial coaching to all members to help them navigate their financial journeys. These are some common counseling questions frequently answered by our financial coaches; if you offer financial coaching services for your employees, share these common questions to help them get started.
Whether employees are going through a major life transition, faced with cash flow challenges or something in between, they are likely experiencing some level of financial-related stress. Your employees need your support along their journey to establish financial health and well-being.
FinFit members have 24/7 access to tools and resources to help them reduce financial stress and elevate their financial wellness.
Help your employees reduce stress and become more productive, happy employees by offering FinFit.