Workplace Well-being. Nice to have or a necessity?

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It is commonly known that being in employment and having a sense of purpose positively impacts your health and wellbeing, with research showing that employed people tend to be happier and healthier than those out of work.

On the flip side, ongoing negative work situations can have a real impact on the quality of your life, both at work and at home.

Now more than ever, in our 24×7 world, employers need to play their part in helping their people improve or manage their health, not just to see an increase in productivity and greater profitability but to recognise that no one is immune from stress and to acknowledge the importance of shielding their biggest assets, our employees.

At BetBright, we are consciously aware of the importance of employee well-being and are dedicated to improving our people’s health. It is an ongoing goal to create a culture and environment in which our employees will become healthier because of working for us.

We address this with a Holistic approach to employee well-being focusing on these key wellness areas:

  • Healthy mind: our psychological well-being
  • Healthy body: our physical wellbeing
  • Healthy Environment: our workplace (social and environment) well-being

workplace

Healthy Minds

Mental health problems have become one of the greatest cause of sickness absence. According to the CIPD, two-fifths of organizations have reported an increase in stress-related absences over recent years, and a similar proportion claims to have seen an increase in reported mental health problems too.

Workplace stress can happen for many reasons and may be triggered by feelings of:

  • being out of control;
  • ambiguity during times of change;
  • a general lack of work fulfillment. In this instance, employers should help their employees see the connection between their day-to-day activities and the overarching goals of the company.

It is crucial that managers are equipped to know how to handle and respond appropriately to employees who are experiencing mental health or stress problems. This is achieved via education, clear policies and guidelines. Employees need to feel that they can confide in their manager and or HR on these issues and need to have confidence in managerial practices.

Healthy Bodies

Through guest speakers and via our Medical Health Insurance providers, we are helping our people understand the risk factors associated with preventable diseases (e.g. cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and cancers). To do this we facilitate all our people with information which encourage them to engage in activities which modify these risks such as educating people about nutrition and diet, and the importance of physical activity.

Healthy culture

It is important to us that employees feel they have supportive relationships at work and we hope that our people feel able to talk to colleagues when problems arise. A genuinely ‘healthy work culture’ comprises of employee’s perceptions about the business – it’s managerial practices, leadership behaviors, employee involvement and rewards systems. `

We encourage managers to reflect our company’s wellbeing policies in their actions, leading to improvement in employee trust. Managers play a vital role in supporting employee wellbeing. It is about creating an environment where all employees can have open and honest conversations about the challenges they are facing.

Wrap up

For any organization considering employee well-being, the aim should be to provide holistic programmes with a range of different activities that are accessible to most employees, whatever their current health, fitness levels or shift patterns.

The most successful wellbeing programmes are flexible, social and fun. The best way to do this is to involve employees from the very beginning of the process, and by setting up wellbeing champions or teams to design meaningful activities that are aligned to both the wellbeing goals of the business and the priorities of employees.

The biggest challenge that HR Leaders and Business Owners can face is lack of engagement. Staff are often “too busy” to attend organized talks and presentations. It is unfortunate that the “I’m too busy to attend to my wellbeing group” are often the very group who need to hear how to manage stress and that would benefit most. Continually educating managers and employees and never giving up, is crucial to the success of creating a truly Healthy Workplace.


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Author: Sarah Geraghty

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