It’s great to see many companies taking a proactive approach to employee wellbeing. This not only reduces the impact on the individual, but on the workplace as well.
Emotionally resilient employees will experience better health and wellbeing, and stronger relationships with colleagues, and are less likely to burn-out or take time off sick due to stress. For employers, this means reduced costs (sick pay, temps), increased productivity and lower employee turnover.
As an employer, line manager or HR professional, here are some ways you can encourage and support employees to become more resilient.
Provide opportunities for personal growth
Offer opportunities for self-development, including personal or professional coaching. You can provide training for ‘soft skills’ such as emotional intelligence, communication, and problem-solving.
Empowering people to develop as individuals not only builds resilience but enables employees to achieve their potential and raises self-esteem.
Promote a good work/life balance
Encourage staff to take lunch breaks away from their desks, (read my article ‘The midday habit you need to break’). Also ensure they are taking all the time off to which they are entitled. Importantly, be sure to model this behaviour yourself.
Offer flexible working where possible to support the balance between work and family life. Ensure you have clear organisational boundaries around working hours, so that work emails and calls don’t interfere with personal time and that employees are aware of these boundaries. Downtime is an important part of building resilience.
Build a supportive culture
Be clear in the values that drive your organisational culture and embed these in the workplace. Create opportunities for employees to connect and build positive relationships which increases their trust in the company. Employees want to enjoy coming to work so aim to build a workplace community where employees can thrive.
Although employers have a responsibility for the wellbeing of their employees, individuals have a responsibility for their own wellbeing too. You can make wellbeing a focus point for your employees and encourage positive habits, either by offering training or opportunities to access resources that will improve wellbeing such as fitness classes, mindfulness or life coaching.
According to research undertaken by mental health charity MIND, 90% of employees who took time off due to stress actually gave another reason for their absence. Many employees are reluctant to talk about wellbeing, stress, and mental health due to the perceived stigma they carry. That’s why it’s vital to normalise these conversations to ensure people feel supported and able to seek help if needed.
Make resources that support good mental health easily available. Where possible, make available an independent external professional with whom employees can address concerns about their wellbeing without fear that it might affect their career, as this is one of the reasons people don’t seek early help.
Can I help you? If you can see the value of giving your employees the opportunity to talk about what’s on their minds and find new ways of thinking about it, we could be a good fit. Contact me and we can have a chat.