January 28, 2021
By Rebecca Batisto
Ever hear the old phrase, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure?”
After 2020, it’s vital that we boost employee well-being and focus on our workers’ health in 2021. Americans will spend up to one-third of their lives at work, so let’s bring health to the foreground and create an inclusive, joyful environment that spawns creativity and leaves employees feeling satisfied and motivated!
There is a link between employee engagement and efficiency, so all businesses should be investing in their workers’ health if they want to drive towards success. But there’s a far more critical, human aspect when it comes to employee health. The best leaders and managers show genuine care for their team.
The vast majority of us spend eight hours working per day, but that time doesn’t include commuting or worrying about complex projects outside of the 9-5. Employees give their time to their jobs, so in return, employers should do their utmost to make their staff feel as welcomed and supported in their careers as possible.
As society’s understanding of mental health improves, more and more businesses are getting involved to host free and useful initiatives to improve workers’ health. Here are four ways you can improve your employees’ mental and physical well-being:
Most jobs at your company will probably have a detailed job description and a clear set of goals. And while these serve as good motivators, employees may feel even more inspired if they are allowed to set their own goals and develop strategies to fulfill these given objectives.
According to research from the University of Birmingham Business School, worker freedom correlates with well-being. Of course, that needs to be balanced with specific boundaries to maintain a business’ core values. We suggest drafting a full plan of necessary goals, then letting employees find the best ways to achieve them.
We all like to be told we’re doing a good job from time to time. Even the smallest “thank you” at the end of an email can go a long way. As the saying goes, “Good manners cost nothing.” It’s nice to know your hard work and dedication isn’t going unnoticed, and it’s even nicer when it’s appreciated. So, how about publicly praising your top performers every so often?
Rather than warning those who are underperforming, start rewarding those who are going above and beyond. Just a tiny bit of recognition, and you’ll begin to see morale change. This positive reinforcement will give those who miss out a greater desire to improve if they know they’ll be getting something out of it.
Volunteering seems like the last thing workers would want to do on top of their already busy schedule, but it can be highly successful as an employee motivator. Indeed, volunteering can lead to many health benefits, with the activity positively correlating with workers’ self-reported health.
By offering time for employees to lead volunteering activities, like community programs or family events, you’ll be giving your staff a significant well-being boost while also improving office morale.
The World Health Organization estimates that over 300 million people have depression. Chances are good that one or more of your team members will have depression or social anxiety, possibly undiagnosed. Many let their depression go untreated because of social taboos and fear of losing their jobs.
Talk with your human resources team and implement strategies to make employees feel more open with their mental health. Invite a representative from your insurance company to talk on the subject, or raise it in your next office newsletter. By being vocal, you may be giving the boost that someone with depression may need to seek help, while you’ll also appear more approachable as a company. Staff members who seek new ways to improve their well-being will see your team’s inclusive approach and have the confidence to implement their own ways to improve workers’ health.
Want to work in a healthy, engaging environment?
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