The concept of wellbeing in the workplace is hardly a new one, but in the last few years it’s really taken centre stage for employers and employees alike – and quite rightly so! With reduced absenteeism, increased productivity, and a workforce that’s healthier both inside and out being just some of the many proven benefits of looking after the wellbeing of your employees, the importance of having a robust and effective wellbeing strategy at the core of your business is absolutely undeniable.
As is the case with a lot of things in life, the more important something is to us, the more pressure we put upon ourselves to make sure we get it right first time. This pressure sometimes has its advantages and can really spur us on to do great things, but more often than not the opposite happens and we end up with a mental block that grinds our progress to a halt.
Here at Employees Health, we’ve been speaking to a lot of businesses recently who are experiencing this sort of mental block when it comes to building their wellbeing strategies, so we thought we’d lend a hand by sharing our top five tops to get you over that hurdle and back on the right track:
- Use Data: assessments are a great tool when it comes to understanding how your employees are doing but, since they only give you a snapshot of how they are feeling In that particular moment, don’t treat them as a “one and done” tickbox exercise. Instead, regularly check in with your employees and be prepared to adjust your approach based on the results – keeping things flexible is going to be vital when it comes meeting everyone’s needs.
- Remember the Four Pillars: when we hear the word “wellbeing”, our minds immediately jump to our mental and physical health. They aren’t wrong in doing so, of course, since these two things are incredibly important when it comes to our wellbeing, but they aren’t the only factors we need to be aware of; our social and financial wellbeing matter as well. To make sure you don’t forget this, try to picture your wellbeing strategy is being built upon four pillars, each one representing a different factor – physical, mental, social and financial – and keep this image in your head as you go along.
- Keep an Eye on the Calendar: when you dive into the world of wellbeing, it can be easy to get swept away by the ocean of information out there. You want to share what you’ve found with your employees, but at the same time you don’t want to drown them by throwing it all at them at once, so how do you find the right balance? The answer is a lot simpler than you may think; topical wellbeing days. For example, Mental Health Awareness Week falls in May, and this would be a perfect opportunity to share information, videos, or run workshops and activities around mental health awareness. So, keep an eye on the calendar and make a note of special wellbeing days/weeks that are coming up, and incorporate them into your wellbeing strategy.
- Involve Senior Leaders: leadership teams play a key role in creating and sustaining your work culture, so it’s really important to involve them in your wellbeing strategy as they will be the key to ingraining it within your workforce. Make sure your leaders encourage team members to take part in wellbeing activities you create and support them to look after their wellbeing.
- Be Loud and Proud: after you’ve worked hard to create your wellbeing strategy, don’t be afraid to shout about it and let everyone know! Get service providers in to showcase their services, tell your employees where to find the resources you’ve gathered, and regularly touch base to make sure they know what’s available to them. Don’t just rely on a poster stuck on a wall or expect people to actively go looking for the help they need – a gentle reminder will go a long way!
If you’ve already incorporated all of these tips into your strategy, then bravo to you! You’ll have created one heck of a programme for your employees! However, it’s really important that you constantly monitor how well your strategy is working and be ready to adapt as the needs of your employees and business change – use that data we spoke about and listen to your staff. After all, they are the ones the programme is for!
If, like a lot of businesses, you do find yourself struggling and feel a bit overwhelmed or stuck when it comes to how to create a new or improve your existing wellbeing strategy despite our tips above, please don’t hesitate to contact us below as we will be more than happy to have a chat and discuss what we can do to help.