As an employer, it is part of your job to pay attention to your employees. Notice who is working hard versus who just makes the deadlines and who transitions between these two. There can be a number of reasons that lead to a drop in performance in the workplace. The easiest answer is that they got lazy. However, it may be the case that they are having problems at home, or maybe they are struggling with an addiction. If it is the latter, and an employee or coworker of yours is suffering from an addiction, it is important to realize this is not a lack of motivation they have but a disease. It is possible for them to be fired on account of substance abuse, but it does not have to be necessary. With some help, they can once again become productive employees.

How do I approach them?

At first, it may be hard to determine that substance use is the problem, but once you are sure it may take you time to determine the best approach them about the situation. If you do decide to confront them, be sure to use examples of times you saw these changes occur. Elaborate on how these changes have affected the company without putting them down. It is important not to appear judgmental while you are doing this because it can make them more weary of treatment and your motivations. You may also decide on actually holding an intervention. If it comes to that, you should contact a professional to hold the intervention.

Workplace Policies and Procedures

Before confronting your employee or coworker, you should check to see what your company policy is in regards to drug and alcohol use. The American’s With Disabilities Act (ADA) was established to protect those who develop an addiction from being fired and from past mistakes made because of their addiction. However, it is important to realize that it does not protect those who are still actively abusing drugs, only if they are in recovery. The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) also helps protect an employee from the loss of their job while they receive treatment. Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs) are also offered by many companies,and can be effective in helping employees that are having addiction problems. EAPs provide short-term counseling, assessment, and all the services they provide remain confidential.

Why Should I Help Them?

There are many benefits to the accommodation of treatment in the workplace. By offering a helping hand and options for treatment, it can help reduce the overall negative impact at work. While promoting a drug free establishment, employers can still show their support by having policies supporting treatment and aftercare in place, and can also reduce the stigma by educating employees. Lastly, research shows that in the end treatment pays for itself in reduced healthcare costs that begin as soon as the employee begins recovery.

Call Serenity Acres Treatment Center today for information on how to get help for an addict or alcoholic in your workplace: 1-800-203-2024.