I am a firm believer that the wellbeing of your staff directly correlates to the success of a business. Research undertaken by the Health and Productivity Institute of Australia found that ‘employers save an average of $5.81 for every dollar invested in employee wellbeing’.
In the last few years of running a media house, working with Network Ten and hosting TV series, I came into contact with people from an array of different industries. It’s my belief that, if your workforce isn’t productive, happy or in a state of creativity and engagement, the business will suffer.
Employee wellbeing has important implications for productivity and work relationships. Satisfied and happy employees are more likely to trust their supervisors, comply with company rules and regulations, provide suggestions to improve the organisation, help their co-workers, and work cooperatively as a team to achieve group goals.
Just like muscle groups, or areas of fitness, these areas of wellbeing can be tested, targeted and developed through the practice of ongoing ‘positive interventions’.
There are certain practical interventions that can be implemented into a workplace to boost overall wellbeing, such as boosting an employee’s feeling of accomplishment and increasing the level of flow in individuals.
In terms of boosting feelings of accomplishment, one approach is a strength based intervention. Managers could schedule time to express their appreciation for an employee’s strengths, through their professional work and at their core personality. The importance of this was found, as 78% of employees who report having a meaningful discussion with their manager about their strengths, feel that their work is making a difference and is appreciated.
Another intervention involves working on increasing the level of flow of employees. Simply put, flow is a state of total immersion in a task or activity. My first taste of this type of ‘flow’ was while I was sparring at a boxing class. I loved the feeling it gave me, but it took some time to realise that this wasn’t only a psychical feeling, but a positive, mental one, too. This can be translated into a corporate environment.
In addition, at a broad, organisational level, there are aspects of job design that can have a large impact on outcomes, such as designing, managing and implementing work that compliments a sense of flourishing. This may involve encouraging flexible work environments, employee participation in decision-making processes and early help seeking. The return on investment for wellbeing programs is undeniable and with some simple, positive adjustments, your business could be on the right track in no time.