What is Workplace Wellbeing?

What is Workplace Wellbeing?

Workplace wellbeing centres upon promoting positive action towards mental health in corporate environments. It involves understanding what your workforce requires not just to function within your business, but to feel contented at work. However, workplace wellbeing is far from a one-size-fits-all model, with each industry, role and individual being different and requiring different forms of assistance. That’s why today, we’ll be running through wellbeing at work, why it’s important, and what you can do to ensure you have a happy, healthy cohort that produces the best work possible.

Why Is It Important?

Workplace wellbeing and productivity are inextricably tied, with there being an undeniable positive correlation between workplaces that take mental wellbeing seriously, and increased output. This is down to a number of factors – workplaces that care for their employees experience greater employee retention, with happier employees feeling encouraged to produce their best work for a company they truly appreciate. In short, a happy, well looked after workforce makes good business sense. However, despite there being strong evidence that strong company culture and individual wellbeing contribute positively to increased productivity, many companies have not caught on. CIPD’s examination of workplace contentment concluded that many workplaces suffer from “an implementation gap, with many organisations not yet embracing the health and wellbeing agenda”. Considering that individuals with existing mental health conditions are twice as likely to lose their jobs, it's about time we start to take workplace wellbeing seriously to help talented individuals and valued employees reach their full potential, so your company can perform optimally.

What Can I Do To Improve Workplace Wellbeing?

Firstly, you must identify what your workforce feels needs changing in order to positively impact their mental wellbeing. According to Bupa’s Workplace Wellbeing Census, the three aspects of work which contribute most to poor wellbeing are workload, job security and bullying. However, an anonymous survey, or frank conversations with employees where they are reassured that airing their concerns will be seriously considered, should be helpful in assessing what your business can improve on.

Secondly, employers should open the floor to conversation about the value of mental health within the work environment. Workplace wellbeing thrives in a supportive environment where your employees feel comfortable voicing their thoughts, feelings and concerns without judgement. If workers fear being penalised for voicing discomfort, positive change will be stifled. Creating an environment of mutual respect and understanding can lead to open and honest conversations that truly benefit your business, with employees feeling comfortable enough to communicate with one another and exchange ideas on how to better the workplace.

Lastly, having targeted areas for improvement, try to implement long-term strategies that seek to target your employees’ concerns. A fantastic example of this comes from Pixar, whose company culture centres upon emboldening the individual in order to produce work that is as unique as they are. Their company culture believes that “people are more important than ideas” and, with this motto at the core of their company, they have been able to create work that is distinctive and successful. What’s more, they have unburdened themselves of barriers between senior staff and the rest of the workforce by promoting an open-door policy wherein cross-department communications are encouraged, doing away with the elitist tendencies that tend to go hand-in-hand in large corporations. Ultimately, the animation giant has managed to create a company that fosters positive workplace wellbeing by heralding the idea that communication is key, and that communication is particularly valuable when different individuals can share ideas in a non-judgemental space.

How can you promote workplace wellbeing?

Here are a few ideas that you can implement to promote workplace wellbeing in your business:

    1. Breakout areas that offer privacy and refreshments for staff who feel overwhelmed or in need of a break
    2. Team building sessions that bring your workforce together and encourage cross-collaboration across departments
    3. Social events that take place outside of the corporate environment and promote professional friendships, making colleagues feel more comfortable in one another’s company
    4. Wellbeing sessions that explain ways to manage stress and promote a healthy work-life balance

At Hope Health, we believe that each and every business should take mental health seriously. We understand that not every company has the resources or experience to enhance workplace wellbeing, which is why we’ve made accessing expert courses as easy as possible so that your cohort can be the best it possibly can be. Whether you’re looking for in-person team building activities, or digital training from the comfort of your own home, we’d love to help.

Our Mental Health First Aid courses allow you to understand the benefits of workplace wellbeing in more detail, with each course being tailored to suit your industry and needs. Our staff aim to provide you with the skills and resources to recognise, listen, and respond to mental health crisis’ among staff.

If you’d like to find out more about the training we provide and how it can benefit your employees, get in touch today:

Nicole O'Callaghan

MHFA Adult & Youth Instructor BA Honours Business Keynote Speaker (PTSD, Stigma, Suicide, Resilience)
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