Man drinking beer for story about alcohol at the workplace

Many people enjoy a drink now and then, but alcohol and the workplace never mix. If you’re a heavy drinker, you are more likely to miss work on a regular basis. Even if you manage to drag yourself in, though, you are putting yourself and others at risk. Here’s why it’s extremely important to stay sober at work, as well as on your lunch break and in the hours immediately preceding your shift. 

Alcohol impacts judgment 

If you had a lot to drink last night, you’re not going to be at your best, even if you are no longer drunk. At best, your productivity will suffer as you will work less efficiently. At worst, your judgment will be skewed, making it more likely that you will put yourself or others in harm’s way.

Alcoholics have more workplace injuries 

Statistics show that alcohol plays a role in many workplace injuries or even deaths. In fact, an estimated 35 percent of workplace injuries involve alcohol misuse, while 16 percent of emergency room patients with workplace injuries test positive for recent alcohol consumption. Employees with drinking problems are more than twice as likely to be responsible for an injury to themselves or others at work.

Alcoholism impacts workplace morale

A drinking problem can also bring down your entire team. You’re more likely to be late, sleepy, and cranky. Your conflict resolution skills are less sharp, and you may be edgy and more likely to start an argument. The overall morale of your coworkers can suffer.

Whether you have a drinking problem or enjoy indulging with your friends now and then, alcohol has no place at work. When deciding whether to go out the night before your shift or grab a beer on your lunch break, think about the impacts that your alcohol consumption could have on your job and your fellow team members. 

If you feel that you have a problem with alcohol, reach out to your employer to determine if there’s an employee assistance program that can help. Otherwise, work on drinking responsibly, saving your alcohol consumption for times when it is certain not to affect your safety or that of your coworkers. 

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