How to humanise the workplace through kindness, community and culture
Social wellbeing is one of the core components of wellbeing, alongside mental, physical, financial and professional. It’s an important contributing factor to workplace wellbeing and has a positive impact on performance; employees who feel connected to a wider team drive better business results.
Kindness can be key to a successful, healthy, popular and balanced life. It’s an inexpensive and efficient way of improving morale, enhancing collaboration and increasing employee engagement. Increasing positivity can boost serotonin and release dopamine in the brain – making your employees happier. Kindness has a wider impact on health; it can decrease blood pressure, reduce anxiety and help people manage stress. Being kind may help employees live happier, healthier and longer lives1.
Building a connected community
Connecting colleagues can enhance collaboration, and help support resilience; employees who share stories and experiences can provide support and inspiration for peers who may be facing similar challenges. Creating a work community can improve happiness and engagement; a Canadian study found that teams in a respectful environment have more energy, are more likely to feel motivated and enthusiastic and are more satisfied with their jobs. It follows that a connected and engaged workforce is also less likely to be isolated, which can also detrimentally affect mental health – loneliness in the workplace is a challenge which employers are well-placed to resolve.
Focus on culture
Culture is all-encompassing. It’s both top-down, and ground-up. It’s the how, rather than the what. And it’s an opportunity for employers to humanise a corporate environment. From emphasising company values, to structured programmes (like volunteer days, charity initiatives to investments in team-building), culture can help celebrate the best of humanity and the individuality each employee brings to the business.
Whether you’re at the beginning of the journey or midway through, there will invariably be steps you can take to improve social wellbeing at work. It can be difficult to know where to start – or where to optimise. But if you’re stuck and in need of inspiration, one of the best places to start is with your employees themselves. They’ll know the problem areas, and have ideas on how to resolve them. They’ll tell you how they view culture, and how they feel it transposes across role levels. After all, you can’t enhance social wellbeing if you don’t know where its lacking.
This article is provided by AON.
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