Are you a forward thinking organisation?
Support your employees in taking ownership of their WELLBEING…
Social psychology holds the key to many concepts in employee commitment and engagement, revealing gems to the origins of motivation and attitudes.
Our current economic climate poses atypical challenges for employers and employees alike, with some elements of the “the psychological contract” such as wellbeing and stability taking precedence over prior traditional elements such as opportunity for promotion, and increasing pay and benefits.
So during challenging times
- What defines mutual obligation?
- Is it enough for leaders to focus on business survival, and in so doing offer job continuity for those who are still employed; and if so at what cost?
- Should employees feel content in still having a job to turn up to everyday?
As coaches we work with a larger number of clients who seek help in managing the symptomatic outputs of feeling torn and stretched to bursting point. They describe what they experience as increasing demands for “presenteeism” at work – just being there and being seen to be around ,as their employers squeeze every last drop out of teams in attempts to stay afloat. In parallel, increasing pressure at home, particularly where partners/spouses have already experienced job loss, places untold demands.
Withholding and suppressing these creates barriers in relationships (work, home and social), limiting people’s ability to connect and interact, resulting in poor communication, tension, and reduced ability to cope with pressure which ultimately manifests in depleted energy levels, absenteeism, resentment and guilt.
These symptoms in the work environment begin to be evident in performance, absence and tensions in the workplace that ordinarily would not provoke an antagonistic response, impacting not only individuals’ wellbeing but ultimately adding financial cost to the organisation through depleted engagement, reduced creativity and absenteeism.
Progressive organisations that recognise this offer their employees choice in defining what well being means for them. Gone are the days when employee assistance programmes, private healthcare and discounted gym membership suffice.
Offering a more customised approach to wellbeing is rapidly becoming essential to get the best performance out of people. The one-to-one approach, with support being given in goal-setting and taking action confidently ensures that all employees turn their best intentions into actions.
By offering this type of “self-help”, people very quickly, learn to make changes to their physical and perceptual patterns and routines and adapt to coping and managing change proactively rather than passively adopting a victim mindset.
When embarking on a more personalised wellbeing programme for your organisation, consider the WHY, HOW and WHAT.
WHY is wellbeing important to your business and its people?
HOW will your organisation seek to support its employees and measure the impact of interventions?
WHAT do people actually want and what would they benefit from?
In the current climate more employees, particularly women, are wearing ” their daily masks” to portray a sense of control rather than run the risk of job loss or fly in the face of opportunities for progression should they arise. They feel disinclined to share the issues and challenges they face in balancing personal and business demands and often stifle real feelings and thoughts.
Using the power of colleague networks is a fantastic way of building connection and a business culture that can be supported from the very top of the company, with vocal passionate advocates promoting relevant initiatives and encouraging take up.
In former roles as Corporate HR Director at Nestle UK and Group Engagement Director at Royal Mail Group viral marketing worked well for initiatives such as Wellbeing, Weight loss programmes, Listeners programmes supporting diversity and inclusion, STEP and STEP (teen) offering effective parenting hints and tips through facilitated discussion groups in the business.
These approached supported and encouraged employees to take responsibility for their own wellbeing and their approach to dealing with everyday challenges, listening out for early feedback and helping the business to refine the optimum range of initiatives and their effectiveness.
Colleague networks also fostered a shared sense of organisational identity, even through tough times, re-building engagement through meaningful face to face connection.
So what are YOUR employees crying out for?
Is wellbeing idealistic fluff or will it provide a healthy foundation for business continuity, growth and talent retention?