According to our research, marketers are more likely to have workplace fears than professionals in any other industry, with a staggering 90.9% admitting that they’re affected. Of those, almost half (45.5%) said that they believe these fears have already had a negative impact on their career development, with many turning down jobs, leaving their current company or worse still, not even applying in the first place.

These findings are very concerning, and it’s clear that these fears need to be addressed if marketing professionals hope to get ahead in their career. As an employer it’s important that you are able to recognise when your staff are being held back by their anxieties, so you can offer the support they need to get over their fears. So what is holding marketers back, and how can you combat this in your business?

Public speaking

Over a quarter (27.3%) of workers in the marketing industry said that the thought of public speaking fills them with dread. This is not an uncommon fear, but speaking to large groups or presenting projects is often a part of the job description for marketers, and therefore needs to be addressed. It’s also a great skill to have and can really help your staff to feel more confident and move forward in their career.

Encouraging your employees to get involved in group discussions, and holding regular team meetings where there is an opportunity for workers to take it in turns to lead, could be all it takes to boost their confidence! This will give them a change to practise addressing larger groups, so they’ll feel more prepared should they find themselves in a situation where the need to present or talk in front of bigger crowd.

Not being skilled enough

An equal number of marketing professionals (27.3%) were concerned about not being skilled enough, so much so they let this hold them back. Not feeling confident or adequate enough for the role they want is leading to many marketers turning down jobs for fear of not meeting expectations, or not even applying for the role in the first place.

As an employer be sure to offer training opportunities to your staff so they can feel like they’re always learning and progressing, as this could help to ease their anxieties. Not only this, but by setting targets and helping your employees to achieve these they can feel like they’re really contributing to the success of the business. And don’t forget, if an employee has worked particularly hard, a bit of praise can go a long way to showing that you that they are a talented and valued member of the team.

Not meeting deadlines

Third on the list of workplace fears was not meeting deadlines, with one in five (18.2%) marketers admitting that this is something they worry about. Deadlines are something we all have to deal with in our working day, but we are only human, and sometimes things do get a little stressful. Create an environment where your employees feel like they can ask for help if they are feeling overwhelmed, as that way work can be shared across the team to ensure deadlines are met. This will also take some of the pressure off and hopefully stop your staff from worrying.

Making a mistake

Making a mistake is something that one in 10 (9.1%) marketers are concerned about. We all want to avoid that gut-wrenching feeling you get when you realise you’ve messed up, but it’s also important to remember that these things do happen. Mistakes can be costly and inconvenient for a business, but more often than not they’re fixable.

As an employer it’s vital you don’t fly off the handle if an error occurs, instead gather the necessary information to understand what happened and why. Then you can begin to help your employees rectify the situation and put measures in place to ensure it doesn’t happen again. This will help them to feel more relaxed and confident, reducing the risk of a mistake in the first place.

It’s important that you are able to recognise when your staff are struggling and offer them the support they need. It’s alarming that such a huge percentage of marketing professionals are being affected by workplace fears, and by fostering an open and friendly working environment your staff will feel like they can ask for help when they need to. Offering training opportunities can also help staff to upskill and reduce the fear of making a mistake. Helping your employees to combat their fears will lead to a strong and confident workforce that will really benefit your business.


By Lee Biggins, founder and managing director of CV-Library

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