Psychological hazards in the workplace as things that cause a worker mental distress or distraction. The following are identified as examples of psychological hazards commonly found in the workplace: Violence, bullying and harassment from co-workers or clients, expected work pace, too much or too little work, individual performance pressure, worker phobias, lack of motivation, lack of leadership and work procedures, fatigue or burnout and shift work. Other hazards are the result of tensions created by mixing genders or races in an industry where no diversity had been the norm.
Workplace violence, bullying and harassment are particularly dangerous in a workplace. Occurrences are often the result of personality conflicts between co-workers or between staff and supervisors. The termination or discipline of a worker is an event that often creates resentment in co-workers as well as the person being disciplined. Ordinary daily activities may cause a grudge over a slight, whether real or imagined, and this is made even more problematic when employees are under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Personal problems can also result in workplace violence and negative behavior. Relationship problems at home or financial or legal problems can create emotional reactions at work. Personality conflicts, grudges and other personal emotional problems can result in an employee bringing weapons to work, endangering everyone present. The Federal Bureau of Inbvestigation recommends planning procedures to handle workplace violence, conducting regular threat assessments and collaboration with local law enforcement, human resources consultants and mental health workers.
A stressful work environment contributes to mental distress and distraction. Lack of organization, lax procedures, unreasonable work pace requirements and poor leadership all lead to stress for employees. Stress leads to mistakes, and mistakes can result in crisis situations. A department that is always operating in response to one crisis after another is a breeding ground for further mistakes. The solution is to reorganize work pace, procedures and quality control to reduce stress levels. A reduction in the stress level of your department will also improve employee morale and reduce the likelihood of violence, bullying and harassment.