Wellbeing at work is no longer a niche issue. Thanks to the pandemic wellbeing at work has gone mainstream and now covers a multitude of employee expectations from mental and physical health to financial wellbeing. Employees working from home over the last two years, have tried to prioritise their wellbeing. Despite these efforts, burnout, and the blurring of boundaries between home and work exist and ignoring the effects of these issues is not possible. The recognition by employers and the government that our work and personal lives are more closely associated than ever means that encouraging employee wellbeing is a win-win situation. Making a great workplace experience for everyone is more beneficial in the long term.
What is wellbeing at work and why it matters
Undoubtedly the pandemic has reinforced the value we place on our health. Now it is impossible to ignore the benefits and the role that wellbeing plays at work. The most urgent wellbeing issues for employers and employees are work/life balance and burnout. Understanding why issues like burnout and poor work/life occur will help an organisation reduce and prevent issues reoccurring. The need to have a work life balance and prevent burnout are being addressed by employers and influenced by government policies. One of the most recent government policies is the right to disconnect which helps in navigating the changed landscape of work that has developed in the last two years. It is not enough to offer access to subscriptions to meditation apps or free yoga classes when an employee feels that the culture of an organisation negatively affects their wellbeing. Some examples of ways that culture affects employee wellbeing include management styles, unrealistic deadlines, or targets, an unsupportive or toxic atmosphere and poor communication. Consequently, issues that affect employee wellbeing converge at many points. Some of the benefits of employee wellbeing include increased productivity and increased morale. Additionally, it strengthens an organisations reputation and at its best, makes employees advocates for your organisation.
Wellbeing is the first of our sustainability goals Acacia Evergreen
We align our sustainability efforts with the UN sustainable development goals. The third UN SDG is good health and wellbeing. One of the essential elements of our Responsible Business plan is focusing on our people. We realise that creating an equitable and respectful work environment where employees can be themselves is an important part of sustainability. Additionally focusing on employee wellbeing, health & safety and learning and development are essential parts of supporting our employees over the long term. Acacia Evergreen has identified and has put plans in place to incorporate employee wellbeing into our business such as hybrid working policies and flexible working plans in addition to existing employee wellbeing awareness efforts. The benefits of these initiatives include reduced commuting and lower ancillary costs while retaining our standards of service.
This month we are actively encouraging our employees to focus on their health. We are participating in 100k in 30 Days. Although the focus is on fundraising for breast cancer research, we are keen to encourage employee awareness of the outward signs and causes of breast cancer. Increasing awareness is only one aspect; the charity encourages participants to walk or run at least 3.3km per day. Exercise is one of the contributing factors in reducing the chances that a person will get cancer in their lives. Consequently, these efforts contribute to addressing the multi-dimensional elements of employee wellbeing.
Creating great workplace experiences is one way to support employee wellbeing. Workplaces that actively consider employee wellbeing and support a healthier working environment are more appealing. Rethinking the layout of your office space and acknowledging that the way we work has changed is part of getting employees back to the workplace. If you would like to speak to us about creating a great workplace experience for your employees, contact us here.