It can be nearly impossible to be successful at your job while abusing alcohol. If one of your coworkers had a sudden change in disposition and a drastic drop in productivity, it could be that they are struggling with alcohol addiction. However, there is a myriad of other possibilities, such as problems at home, other health issues, or a different issue. So how do you know if someone is abusing alcohol in the workplace? While there is no tried and true method, there are a few signs that someone may be struggling with alcohol abuse in your workplace.
1. Change in Performance
Some people are just not good at their job. It is an unfortunate fact, but a fact nevertheless. However, if someone was performing at a high level and experienced a sudden and drastic decrease, it could be a sign of alcohol abuse.
2. They Show Up to Work Less
Those abusing alcohol may out of nowhere start using up all of their sick days and PTO, or take days off without even checking in with the office.
3. Drastic Mood Swings
You may always have tread carefully around a colleague struggling with alcohol addiction, as they may be prone to drastic mood swings that can have them snapping at you without any kind of warning.
4. An Attitude Change
You may notice a sudden change in attitude and disposition in a coworker struggling with alcohol abuse. This goes beyond mood swings, as their general attitude and outlook on life will take on a sudden shift.
5. Change in Their Personal Appearance
If a coworker who has always clean-shaven with combed hair is suddenly rocking stubble and an unkempt mane, it could be more than a style switch up. If your coworker has a change in personal appearance and hygiene, it could be a sign that they are abusing alcohol.
6. Strange Behavioral Patterns
There is normal and abnormal behavior. If you notice someone in the office acting strange or showing odd behavioral patterns, they could be struggling with alcohol.
7. A Defensive Attitude About Addiction
If the individual you suspect has a drinking problem is ever confronted with the possibility of addiction, they will immediately get defensive and possibly angry.
8. Shrugging Off Responsibilities
People with alcohol addiction tend to withdrawal from responsibilities, either by passing the buck to someone else or just ignoring their responsibilities altogether. This can range from small responsibilities like bringing food to a potluck to large ones such as making an important meeting with a client.
Get Your Coworker the Alcohol Addiction Treatment They Need
While having one or even a few of the above symptoms is not indicative of a drinking problem, these signs of alcohol abuse in the workplace are a good starting point for determining if your coworker has a problem. If you feel a coworker struggles with alcohol abuse, they need to get help immediately to get their addiction under control. The Pearson Center for Alcohol and Addiction Research in San Diego offers free treatment for alcoholics through our clinical trials. To learn more or to join a clinical trial, give us a call at (858) 784-7867.