The pandemic has left a negative impact on people’s mental wellbeing.  For some, we are not quite ‘burned out’ but we are not flourishing either.

A languishing and/or surviving state that feels like we’re muddling through our days and viewing lives through a foggy windshield.

With the easing of pandemic restrictions, it is easy to assume that everyone will return to ‘normal’. But this is not the case.

The big challenge for employers

The big challenge for employers is this rather negative wellbeing is carried into the workplace, and organisations now need to adopt effective steps to managing the risks of stress and mental ill health among their staff.

With a few exceptions, most organisations along with their Boards, directors, CEOs and senior leadership group take this challenge seriously.

Yet being aware of the situation and recognising its importance, is not the same as knowing what the best solution is.  Furthermore, lacking seems to be what type of program and how to introduce and roll it out to be effective?

Helpful steps

Here are some of the steps to consider:

Adopt an organisational approach

To adopt and roll out an organisational approach to employee wellbeing involves defining a distinct set of responsibilities for certain groups of employees.
1. Ensure your senior leadership team are aware of the importance of workplace wellbeing, and that they embed actions to ensure that this commitment is taken seriously across the organisation.
2. Never underestimate the crucial role of every person, whether in a management role or not, in addressing the risks of stress among staff. Your staff’s first port of call when experiencing a difficulty involving health or work stress can be a work colleague or their manager/supervisor.

Underpin with policies and practices

Create a targeted approach with clear applicable policies and practices that promote good wellbeing and foster a culture where staff can talk about mental health and stress without experiencing any stigma.
1. Ensure that staff has the confidence and trust to have sensitive conversations with people they report to.
2. Promote workplace flexibility and how to access support when people are in need of them. Whether support is offered via HR and/or People & Performance or an outsourced specialist, it’s important for staff to know how to access these services.
3. Tailor any of your existing policies and practices based on your employee needs. Gone are the days where you can just adopt a ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach to designing an effective employee wellbeing strategy. To be fully effective, the strategy must fit in with your organisation’s unique characteristics and particular circumstances.

Assess possible causes of any work-related stress

As a preventative measure, carry out an assessment of what may contribute to work-related stress across the organisation. This helps to provide actionable insights that may be unique to your organisation.
1. Perhaps undertake a pulse check of your workforce mental health and use these metrics to spot patterns and drive higher engagement on some of the initiatives you have put in place.
2. After all, a data-driven approach is so much better than ad hoc wellbeing initiatives like….’help yourself to free fruit, because we think this will keep you healthy’.

Making sure wellbeing is not just a hollow buzz phrase

From engagement to productivity, adopting an organisational approach to wellbeing demonstrates to staff that their concerns are not just being listened to, but acted on.  It’s your proof to them that their psychological safety and wellbeing is of huge value to the organisation, and not just a hollow buzz phrase (that’s a trend at the moment).

Enterprise Care works collaboratively, whether in the areas of culture, staff engagement, remuneration or governance more broadly, to ensure your organisation’s success.  Our flexible approach includes Board member and staff interviews, diagnostic insights, and reporting, and conducting facilitation sessions with your key people to agree meaningful and practical actions that deliver high positive organisational impact.

Contact us today to discuss how we may be able to assist you.