Is Your Organization ‘Anxious’?

Is your company drowning in an ocean of anxiety? According to Jeffrey A. Miller, author of “The Anxious Organization” (Facts on Demand Press, January, 2008), it could be.

Consider the following questions:

>> Do people take sides with other people instead of taking stands on issues? Do they form coalitions and/or cliques?

>> Do people assert their territory to the detriment of the organization as a whole? Are feuding, back-stabbing and turf wars a way of life?

>> Do work groups tend to come to rapid agreement, with very little discussion or dissent?

>> Do particular individuals or departments tend to be blamed consistently for organizational problems?

>> Is there a problem with disruptive employee turnover? Are people constantly quitting due to job stress or dissatisfaction with the organization?

>> When conflicts and problems arise, are people exhorted to show more “team spirit”?

If your answer to most of these questions was an emphatic yes, you probably are dealing with a level of anxiety that’s too high to be healthy — for employees or for the company itself.

“Anxiety, like anything else in life, is best in moderation,” says Miller. “If you work for an overly anxious organization, it may be a good idea to seek a fresh point of view. Sometimes it only takes one person to recognize the destructive cycle and break out of it. You could end up greatly improving your company’s profitability. In fact, you could end up saving its life.”

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