Well-being in the workplace has always been an incredibly important consideration for businesses, but even more so moving past the pandemic.
We caught up with well-being experts Sharon Critchlow and Nicky Marshall from Discover Your Bounce to find out new well-being trends, how to create a well-being strategy, and how to assess how well you’re supporting your team’s wellbeing.
What is new in workplace well-being?
How we use office space is changing and this could be a really good thing for businesses.
According to the Office for National Statistics 46.6% of people in employment did some work from home in 2020 and for many businesses this trend is continuing. Whilst this can appear to make it harder to see everything your team are doing and what they are struggling with, it gives an opportunity to adapt your businesses practices, introduce technology and focus on your people in a meaningful way.
Does culture matter in business?
I’ll let you in to a secret about getting more from your team. According to the 2021 Deloitte Global Human Capital Trends “Employees who are given the freedom to apply their interests and passions to organisational needs will be more motivated and engaged”. However, this is only part of the story as people search for more meaning in the work that they do. Research by Garton & Mankins shows that an engaged employee is 45% more productive than a merely satisfied worker. What is more interesting is that an inspired employee (one who has a profound personal connection to their work and/or their company) is 55% more productive than an engaged employee. This is more than twice as productive as a satisfied worker. The better an organisation is at engaging and inspiring its employees, the better its performance.
Employees are looking for more connection and more meaningful work and your workspace can be adapted to become a collaborative space. However, it takes a change in leadership thinking for people to feel safe to speak up and ready to get creative. So alongside creating an awesome workspace you need to create the culture that supports that.
What about Vision and Values?
A great place to start is to look at your company’s vision and values. We spend a lot of time looking at our branding, but does this translate into a team who understand and love what you do? If you are bringing people back into the workplace, make your first collaboration an opportunity to discuss and describe the great things you do as an organisation. Remind everyone of the impact your product or service has on your customers. Also remember that we have all been through a lot in the last 18 months and create a wellbeing action plan to support their wellbeing and a wellbeing strategy to provide a framework for success.
How can businesses create a Wellbeing Strategy and Wellbeing Action Plan?
According to the CIPD wellbeing at work report in April 2021, investing in employee wellbeing can lead to increased resilience, reduced sickness absence, higher performance, and productivity. To gain the real benefit, wellbeing needs to be embedded throughout the organisation. Wellbeing strategies can include regularly checking in with your teams, pinpointing areas of concern, education, and benchmarking for engagement. A good place to start is to remind everyone of the benefits you already have available to help them. Do you have an employee assistance programme or helpline? Private medical insurance? Access to a financial adviser? Whatever it is, get clear on communicating it.
Senior leadership buy in is essential to any wellbeing strategy as it may require the business to change its approach to certain topics such as mental health. Other aspects to consider are updating your wellbeing policies around sickness and mental health and having a wellbeing budget – even if it is quite modest. What do you encourage as an organisation that promotes good health? Does everyone get involved? If not, consider creative wellbeing activities as well as physical activities all of which could lead to greater team cohesion.
Finally, your people are all individuals so consider their individual needs. A wellbeing action plan is an individually tailored plan that enables you to have a conversation about the health, stress levels and wellbeing needs of your team members.
How can organisations assess their well-being activity?
We have created a quiz to help you to think about different aspects of workplace wellbeing and it is free! www.discoveryourbounce.scoreapp.com we are also available to help you to create a wellbeing strategy, engage your teams to create your vision and to train your managers and staff in stress reduction and increased personal resilience. We are Discover Your Bounce! www.discoveryourbounce.com