The U.S. is facing a self-confidence crisis. Many of us, particularly teens and women, are feeling less confident than ever in our appearance and our skillsets. This can cause many different problems, including that it prevents worker from achieving success in the office.

Some blame the lack of self-confidence on social media, the internet or magazines. No matter what the cause is for an individual the truth is that a lack of self-confidence can hurt employees in the workplace. Less confident and efficient workers means that employers and their organizations will take a hit as well.

Of the seven foundational workplace skills, a healthy level of self-confidence fuels almost all of them. Attitude, appearance and ambition are just a few that rely on an employee knowing their worth and wanting to work hard to better themselves. For example, an employee with low self-esteem might think that their appearance isn’t worth their time or effort. This means that they won’t put their best foot forward every day.

The Correlation Between Self-Confidence and Stress

A lack of self-confidence is one of the main causes of stress in the workplace. Think about it: every time an employee receives an unfamiliar task, something they don’t like doing or their work gets criticized, their stress levels spike. Rather than thinking, “I can handle this,” they begin to panic and think, “I’m going to fail.”

Of course, these situations occur all the time the workplace, and employers want staff who are confident in their abilities and can handle anything that’s thrown at them. However, an employee that lacks self-confidence might not be willing to take on new tasks.

So, how can we reduce stress and help the workforce thrive?

Building Confidence in the Workforce

Just like work ethic, many people believe that it’s impossible to teach or help someone build up their self-esteem outside of therapy or medication. However, there are some things we can do to help people feel more accepted and successful at work. Here are three ways we can help build a more confident workforce moving forward:

1. Help with Preparation

Preparation is key for employees to feel smart and ready for whatever the day throws at them. Role-playing with employees or job seekers is a great way to help them feel prepared for a variety of different workplace scenarios. This way they will know how to respond when faced with a task they don’t like or receive a piece of criticism.

2. Make the Most of Mistakes

Employees who lack self-confidence will beat themselves up for their own mistakes. The last thing they need is their employers to do it for them. In order to boost confidence, employees need their workplaces to help them through mistakes.

Make every mistake an opportunity for learning, rather than simply criticizing. Offer advice on what to do next time in order to avoid making the mistake again, and the stress that goes along with that.

3. Share their Skills

Everyone has something they’re good at, even if they don’t recognize it in themselves. Encourage growth of an employee’s top skills by having them share these skills with other people.

If an employee is particularly organized or can learn a new software program in a matter of seconds, have them teach that skill to others. Assign them to train a new employee or have them host a workshop for their coworkers. Getting to share their skills will let them know their employer recognizes their talents. Feeling appreciated and valued will give them a major confidence boost.

Higher Levels of Self-Confidence Helps Increase Work Ethic

Building a confident workforce won’t happen overnight. However, there are a lot of behaviors we can encourage in people, whether we’re an employer, work ethic coach or any another role. Employees that are self-confident will bring along many of the other seven skills for workplace success, and will naturally enjoy their jobs more.

What other skills are employers looking for in the workforce? Click here to find out.