The working day takes up a huge chunk of an employee’s life, and the workplace and environment can have a significant impact on how engaged and motivated your team is. In this article, we take a look at some of the ways in which you can create a workplace that boosts and supports employee wellbeing.
Talk to your employees
To create a workplace that’s focused on employee wellbeing it’s essential to actually engage with your employees. You need to talk to them and understand their requirements, expectations, and any issues that they might need help with. Employees should feel involved and well-informed about what’s going on in the workplace so that they feel valued and supported.
By talking to your employees, you’ll get an idea of what steps you need to take to really make a difference to their well-being in the long term. Start off with a review of your current workplace setup and practices — ask your employees to fill in a survey or give them the opportunity to share their ideas and suggestions. You should also check in with employees regularly for further feedback and insights so that your workplace is continually developing and improving.
Encourage communication and openness
Alongside gathering feedback from your employees you should encourage them to feel free to speak to someone about any problems they’re having at any time. Promote open conversations and make sure that there is always someone that your employees can go to for help.
Schedule regular wellbeing checkups at least once every few months on top of regular work-focused catch-ups. Some employees might not feel like coming forward, but a one-to-one conversation can give them a space to open up about any stresses or concerns they have.
Make the workplace a positive environment
Spend some time considering how your workplace or office can be improved to support employee wellbeing. Create a separate space where they can take their lunch breaks or sit down for five minutes if they need some time away from the desk. It’s not healthy or productive for employees to have lunch while they work.
Look at the layout of your office — consider things like the lighting, temperature, and noise levels. For example, are their meeting rooms that are suitable for group discussions? Are there quiet areas where people can focus on work without any distractions?
Bringing nature into the workplace can also do a lot to boost wellbeing. You might want to add in some indoor plants from somewhere like The Sill to add some greenery and also help purify the area.
If your workplace has an outdoor space then you could create a relaxing garden area for employees to take a break. You can transform even the most neglected small outside area into a green haven with some colorful plants. Just use one of these organic fertilizer options from John & Bob’s and you’ll be able to plant some flowers that thrive with little attention and create a bright, positive space.
Prioritize work-life balance
Working longer hours won’t mean that your employees are getting more done. They’re actually more likely to feel tired out, stressed, and less motivated, which can all impact how productive your team is. It’s important to encourage your employees to maintain a good work-life balance.
Set out a reasonable expectation for working hours, and ensure that they aren’t working overtime on a regular basis. Make it clear that your employees don’t need to be doing extra work in their own time on the weekends and evenings, even if they can work from home.
Focus on creating a culture at your workplace where people feel like they’re able to take time off when they need to. Make it straightforward for employees to take a sick day when they’re unwell so that they don’t come in even when they’re not at their most productive. And encourage staff to take a holiday — they’ll come back refreshed, more positive and focused.
Offer training and development opportunities
Training and development is another key way to support staff wellbeing in the workplace. By giving them the opportunity to continually learn and develop new skills helps them to feel more motivated and engaged with their work. It’s often easy for training time to be pushed back when other things take priority, but scheduling monthly training sessions can make a huge difference to your team. They’ll be able to do their work better and feel more positive about their roles.
Establish policies and practices to support wellbeing
Alongside all the other measures you put in place to create a positive workplace, it’s important that you have policies that are specifically designed to focus on employee wellbeing. Put together some resources on dealing with stress and mental health problems, and encourage employees to speak up when they need help.
You could also provide additional support and benefits such as access to meditation apps like Unplug to support employee wellbeing. Gym memberships or organized workout sessions are also a good idea as exercise can do a lot to relieve stress and boost mental health.
Creating a positive workplace that supports your employee’s wellbeing will look slightly different in each business. But overall it’s important to focus on your team’s requirements and provide them with the resources and motivation that they need to do their work effectively.