4 fundamental steps to improve employee well-being
March 2, 2023
March 2, 2023
Taking care of your workforce not only benefits them, but it can also have a major impact on your business outcomes. A recent Gallup study revealed that engaged workers who aren’t thriving in their personal lives are “61% more likely to experience burnout often or always”1. Burnout leads to mental, emotional, and physical health issues. To avoid reaching this point and instead foster a positive work environment, knowing how to improve employee well-being is crucial.
Workplace connection, flexible work opportunities, remuneration, corporate culture, purpose, inclusion… All of these topics help promote well-being in the workplace, but which one do you tackle first? Do you feel that you can’t satisfy everybody’s needs? We are going to share some basic practices that can help you increase the overall level of well-being in your workplace.
Do you want to make your company an even better place to work? We’ve analyzed the latest studies about employee well-being and have come up with four essential steps that should put you on the right path to fostering wellness at work.
1. Involve your staff in the process of improving employee well-being
The first step to improving employee well-being
While we can give you some clear ways to improve employee well-being, you won’t get the first and most accurate response from us. It will come from your team members. It might sound obvious , but leaders often forget to reach out to their team for opinions and feedback first when changing something in the workplace. They are the best people to tell you what prevents them from being happy or satisfied at work and how you could enhance the opposite feelings. So, before doing anything, ask your coworkers how they feel and what you can do to make them feel better at work.
The importance of finding explanations at the source
Why are we emphasizing asking your team members first? Discussing changes with your team members is the best way to implement efficient practices that change the way they feel at work. Through this, you can get a better understanding of what is causing poor wellness in your work environment. As each workforce and organization is unique, the triggers might be different from one company to another. How do you gather this information? It can be done through an open conversation with your team, a one-to-one meeting, or an anonymous survey. The way you do it doesn’t really matter. Rather, what is important is choosing the approach that your workers are the most confident with in order to get to most honest feedback.
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Questions you can ask your staff to promote well-being in the workplace
So before applying any change to promote well-being in the workplace and assuming they will benefit your team, get their feedback first. Here are a few examples of questions that can help you figure out how they feel and what their most salient needs are:
- Are there some aspects of the environment that make you feel unwell at work (physically, emotionally, and mentally)? If yes, can you please share them with us?
- Do you feel that your career prevents you from doing more physical activity? If yes, how could we help you with this aspect?
- What do you think are the three most important elements to focus on to improve employee well-being?
- Do you often feel stressed at work? If yes, what are the main triggers (commuting, short deadlines, lack of clear communication, etc.)?
- Do you think the company takes your well-being into account enough?
- What could help improve your mental health?
💡 deskbird’s tip: you need precise answers, avoid “yes or no” questions like “Are you happy about your job?”.
2. Focus on applying employee-centric initiatives
The outcomes of fostering a people-first culture
Employee happiness, satisfaction, and well-being are all interconnected. When you focus on one of these aspects, it has a domino effect on the others. Indirectly, it also impacts more key factors such as engagement, performance, productivity, turnover, brand image, and success. Unfortunately, “less than 50% of U.S. workers believe their organization cares about their well-being”1. Therefore, making an effort to foster a people-first culture, and especially aiming to improve employee well-being, is essential. When you analyze your employees’ feedback, some topics might arise more than others. For instance, workers are often mentioning the stress of commuting or the lack of work-life balance. List the most recurring ones and focus on improving those aspects first.
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Examples of employee-centric initiatives that promote corporate wellness
Any action you implement to fulfill employees’ needs promotes corporate wellness. But, after a couple of years analyzing the evolution of workers’ expectations, we’ve got a clearer idea of the major traits that contribute to a higher level of well-being. Here are the most common best practices to promote well-being in the workplace:
- Offer flexible work opportunities;
- Provide mental health support resources;
- Enhance a positive and strong workplace culture;
- Focus on employee empowerment;
- Create career evolution and learning opportunities;
- Build workplace connection;
- Help your team members to find purpose in their job;
- Promote work-life balance;
- Facilitate sports practices;
- Encourage clear and transparent communication;
- Recognize your staff’s value and abilities;
- Design a workspace answering workers’ needs and promoting corporate wellness;
- Attend employee well-being training.
3. Get appropriate training about how to improve employee well-being
The advantages of attending an employee well-being training
Attending employee well-being training benefits both managers and team members. As a leader, learning more about how to improve employee well-being will help you:
- understand the purpose of well-being at work better.
- Know and detect potential triggers of poor mental health or employee burnout.
- Be equipped with the right tools to improve the well-being of your team.
- Increase your chances of collaborating with a more engaged, productive, and loyal workforce.
- Lead by example by introducing the workplace well-being initiatives you’ve learned to yourself.
From an employee point of view, getting an insight into the meaning of well-being in the workplace and how to promote it will enable them to:
- determine what the most important aspects to stay physically and mentally healthy at work are (for them).
- Realize the importance of keeping a healthy work-life balance.
- Discover the employee well-being resources available for them in case they need them.
- Learn how to improve their own well-being in the workplace.
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The online and physical resources to improve employee well-being available
Depending on the size of your business, you might not have the budget allocated to training. If you want to invest in your workforce (which is the smartest move) but don’t have that many funds yet, start with online courses that are usually less expensive than on-site ones. For example, here are the three top LinkedIn courses on this topic:
- Well-being in the Workplace;
- How to Support Your Employees’ Well-being;
- Three Steps to Mental Well-Being at Work.
If you have a bit more budget, you can collaborate with a third-party provider that can educate your staff about this topic. If you consider it is time to invest more in your workforce and have the financial means for it, grow your HR team and hire a corporate wellness consultant.
4. Regularly measure employee well-being
The best way to know if your efforts are worth it and to see progress and detect areas of improvement is to measure employee well-being regularly. For this, analyzing data such as absenteeism and sick notes is crucial. Sending specific employee satisfaction questionnaires about the wellness topic is also a useful resource for managers and employers. For example, you can build these surveys based on the 6 wellness KPIs recommended by BambooHR which are:
- employee satisfaction;
- employee retention;
- employee motivation;
- management satisfaction;
- peer satisfaction;
- work environment.
With these six aspects, you cover all of the necessary factors that promote well-being in the workplace. Regularly checking how your workers feel in the workplace helps you ensure you meet their expectations and create a work environment that enhances both employee happiness and productivity.
Do you want to ensure your workers thrive? Taking care of their mental, emotional, and physical health is fundamental. Corporate wellness is deeply linked to personal well-being and vice versa. Before putting any initiative into action, talk with your workforce and conduct surveys to know what could improve employee well-being. Having a better work-life balance and more work flexibility will probably be among their top priorities. Are you looking for the best way to switch to a hybrid work model?
Request a free demo of the deskbird app and discover all our employee-centric features to create a smooth and successful transition toward the future of work!
1 Employee well-being Is Key for Workplace Productivity, Gallup.