How Effective is Your HR Department?
HR departments must take a semi-circular approach when approaching efficiency to maximize their effectiveness. Any company’s success, whether with the production of goods or services, is based on employee happiness and retention. HR departments need to be innovative with their management tactics for employees to feel fully engaged and appreciated by their company. The best way for HR to do this is through pain management techniques such as acceptance, tolerance, and commitment therapy or TAAC-C, according to Dr. Jordan Sudberg.
Dr. Sudberg argues that the best way for HR to integrate TAAC into its office operations is by allowing the company’s employees to be self-directed while still surrounding those employees with a sense of support and positive reinforcement. While this model may initially seem daunting, it is much less complicated than other stress management techniques such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and experiential mindfulness-based therapies (EMBT). EMBT is a more complex form of practice and involves a professional therapist to train a company’s employees on how to deal with stress more productively. This strategy always incurs an additional cost to the company, which can be interpreted as a complete loss for the workers under the EMBT program.
Instead, TAAC-C is a less expensive yet equally effective method for self-management (self-control) of stressful situations in the workplace. TAAC-C uses behavior therapy to train employees to deal with stress and overstimulation. Dr. Sudberg notes that “behavior modification and therapy are intertwined, but the main difference is that behavior modification is more of an action-oriented approach.” TAAC-C also focuses on an individual’s “realistic capacity,” which leads employees to understand how much they can get done on a given day. Furthermore, TAAC-C uses a “pain and pleasure” method to understand the activities most important for a company’s day-to-day operation. Employees are trained to ask themselves if the work they are doing is important to their job or if it is simply filling up space in the day. By learning how to determine which tasks need to be done immediately and which can be pushed back, employees learn how to manage their time more effectively and eliminate unnecessary burdens.
Dr. Jordan Sudberg knows that proper pain management techniques like TAAC-C allow employees to deal with conflicting issues such as “distress, distress intolerance, avoidance, and the use of coping strategies to regulate thoughts and feelings.” This helps employees feel prepared without worrying about certain stressful situations. Like in any other job, dealing with stress at work is important for a company’s survival. However, Dr. Sudberg compares the experience of stress at work with the experience of a sugar crash from excessive sugar consumption. To overcome the sugar crash, food cravings and motivating factors are needed to keep a person going. Similarly, a company’s employees need a sense of responsibility for their job and a means of coping with stress to feel less stressed about their work.
Successful organizations should adopt TAAC-C into their daily practices by adopting skills necessary for its incorporation. The “dual processes” of TAAC-C must be interpreted as a “process of management,” meaning that employees must continually assess their needs to feel competent and empowered.