Dealing with a worker who is struggling with addiction is one of the most difficult circumstances that a company may encounter. Even if your business has a clear alcohol and drug policy and conducts random drug tests, an employee can get addicted to drugs or alcohol.
How can you help a co-worker or employee who is dependent on drugs or alcohol? What signs and symptoms of addiction are there? How do you tell when it is the proper moment to provide help? What actions can you take to protect your business against lawsuits brought about by employee misconduct? Are there any actions you can do to make the situation better? These are all the questions you might have in your mind.
Here are a few warning signs of alcoholism:
- Low output at work
- Late for work.
- Often forgets obligations and misses deadlines.
- Seem dishevelled or fatigued,
- Bloodshot eyes.
- Severe tremors or shaking.
- Drinking excessively while alone or arriving at social events smelly of alcohol
- Frequently intoxicated at workplace activities
How to Conduct a Meaningful Conversation with an Alcoholic Employee:
- State the facts: Despite how certain you are of the seriousness of your workers’ conditions, try not to assume anything about their problems or personal lives or classify them as “alcoholics” since you likely do not know much about them. Instead, you can bring up specific instances that have raised concerns, such as how often they’ve been tardy recently, how frequently they’ve missed deadlines, whether or not you have smelled alcohol on their breath, and so on.
- Show respect: Given the potential for the sensitiveness of these topics, it’s critical to respect the employee’s status by bringing them up at the appropriate time and in a non-threatening setting.
- Be aware of your employee’s rights; for instance, in states with job protection laws, employers are required to see dependence as a medical problem rather than an immediate justification for termination. Businesses are not obligated by law to have drug and alcohol policies set in place, and they are not required to pay for employees who need treatment for substance misuse.
- Refrain from using accusatory language; rather than just critiquing the employee’s job, explain why you are concerned for their welfare.
- Consult the company’s policy on managing such circumstances if an employee has been caught taking drugs or alcohol while on the job, for example. If you really care about your employee’s welfare and future career prospects, you’ll be upfront about the fact that you’re not using this conversation as a kind of punishment but rather as a tool to achieve that goal.
- Anticipate your employee’s denial, defensiveness, and maybe even a little upset about the situation, and behave appropriately (with patience and understanding).
Don’t Let Addiction Mess with Your Job: Visit Taylor Recovery Today
Employee drug and alcohol use is costly and dangerous. However, this should not be construed as justification for dismissing an employee with a drug misuse issue right away. It is usually less expensive to help an employee get treatment than to locate a replacement. Watch out for any signs of drug abuse as soon as possible to assist an employee in getting their career and their life back on track. Contact Taylor Recovery Center in Dallas if you are concerned about your employee’s drug abuse. We treat all cases with utmost privacy.