So what is it about workplace communication in the digital age that causes high stress levels and feelings of anxiety? Let’s take a look at some of the specific challenges that come with collaborating with colleagues and supervisors from behind a screen, along with tips from experts on setting boundaries for your mental health.
With the switch to new technology to facilitate conversations, the boundaries between our professional and private lives have broken down. A worker doesn’t have to be in the office for their boss to call them in for an unexpected meeting—they could be cooking dinner or tucking their kids into bed when they get a request. And that feeling of needing to be “on” 24/7 can be draining. The pressure to check and respond to emails outside of traditional work hours, for example, can start to add up, affecting one’s work-life balance.
Plus, the speed of digital communications can make workers feel that every message they receive requires an immediate response. Researchers have found that when a worker receives an email after business hours, they tend to overestimate how quickly the sender expects a response. The phenomenon, dubbed “the email urgency bias,” has been linked to lower feelings of well-being and higher levels of perceived job stress.
Even during business hours, the experience of basic communication with coworkers has been reduced to endless back and forth on Slack or another internal communications platform. Rather than having conversations on projects in person as you would in the office, everything is sent via instant message, which adds a whole new layer of complexity. So rather than walking over to someone’s desk in person to quickly talk out a problem, it turns into a long-winded back and forth.
For a deeper look at the challenge of work place digital communication, follow link to reference below: