Organizations must come together against any policy that dispels the absolute correlation between their goals and the workforce productivity.
The influential personalities within the business hierarchy have to realize that their strategy needs a boost and the much-needed addition of mental health awareness programs.
Believe it or not, mental health concerns such as depression, anxiety, stress, and emotional outbursts belong to the shadow sides of an employee. In the presence of these negative symptoms, an individual cannot yield greater results. And we all know that stress starts at the workplace.
What can leaders do to make the situation better?
A study revealed that 78% of engaged employees feel that their work benefits their psychological wellness.
There are a few unique and effective ways to boost employee wellness:
1. B-Leisure Trips
What if leisure and business become friends and thrive in the same environment happily? Sounds alien, right? Quite possible because a trip to another destination will be a foolhardy venture if there is no extra exploration and fun allowed.
The latest wellness trends recommend boosting more professional trips that circles around a work-life balance.
B-Leisure trips are on the horizon and certainly gaining popularity. These trips give the employee on-the-go, the liberty to take his/her family, parents or spouse along and spend some time away at a new destination.
The free time is usually grabbed post-office hours or after the shift hours, depending where the person is.
A leader must encourage such trips or at least ask the management to consider the proposition. Employees feel rewarded with the opportunity in-hand and a few moments of happiness with their loved ones.
2. Wellness Retreats
Retreat means disconnect. A person can disconnect from anything and everything that does not serve their highest good. But this is not about abrupt resignation emails.
Wellness retreats mean an opportunity to disconnect with the current environment and a peaceful movement to a new place, submitting to art, meditation, and music. It is important to keep the cut-off game high and muster strength to fly over to a new place in search of some peace.
There are many wellness retreats ideas like Yoga retreats, detox sessions, and spiritual retreats which can offer relief to the soul and a much-needed break as well.
The organization can easily collaborate with travel companies and fund these trips that are both fun and relaxing, in the truest sense.
3. Different Schedules
Trips and vacations are fine. But everything returns to the same after – emails, bad boss stories, and what not. Besides stress, monotony is a silent killer as well. And if not attended to, it can surely dampen the productivity.
Sadly, companies have tight schedules and no sense of slowing things down. Remember, stress is an outcome of constant push and being led by push-overs.
Leaders can make the experience a little lighter by enforcing regulations, supporting flexible timings, changing schedules, switching shift timings, and extending lunch.
Well, it’s not a secret that many employees kill time in the cafeteria. Twist those timings and extend the duration so that employees do not have to hide to do such things. A freer workforce has more mental clarity and less instances of false guilt traps.
4. Welcome Wellness
Health should reflect on the face and body. Not many organizations have fully harnessed the power of it, but nothing is as effective as discussing health. Wellness retreats can be challenging for some companies, even though those retreats are the best way to bring in the transformation.
So what else is available? Wellness programs. Leaders and managers may collaborate with the employee welfare team or the human resources team to invite centers and organizations who initiate such programs, such as fitness talks, preaching by Yoga gurus, nutritionists and experts, or even inviting influential people for some dose of motivation.
These programs catalyze change in the employee mindset, motivate them, and improve their lifestyle. A healthy lifestyle equals a good mood, and this assures good outcomes.
5. Personal Interactions
Communication is key to everything. Leaders must come together and devise a strategy that encourages candid conversations. Companies cannot go all tough and professional all year round.
What happens after an appraisal meet-up or annual progress meeting? Well, feedback papers go in the garbage can and emotions go downhill. Nothing fruitful comes out of it except a possible promotion letter.
Leaders and bosses can encourage monthly or even weekly personal interactions pertinent to mental health, distractions, possible hurdles faced, and so on.
This does not have to be way too professional and involve senior management, but a brief interaction between an employee and their immediate seniors. This fosters good relations, cordial atmosphere, trust, and a lot of positive vibes.
6. Time to Flex
Gym in a company facility is like the rubber plant in a garden. It looks like a plant but no benefits whatsoever. A gymnasium is a part of the employee wellness strategy. But it remains the most underutilized source of happiness. Leaders must offer some time out to their employees so that they can head to the gym, flex, and be merry.
The 9am to 6pm office shift can easily have a small percentage of shares for this effective wellness initiative. Sometimes, an employee might not feel the need to do it because of fear of time wasting, stress, and workload.
However, leaders have to re-condition the entire environment for a healthy boost. What can be done that benefits all?
Everyone needs exercise, so managers have to make sure that they take their interested team members along and workout together. Fix one hour of the day for that, and come back refreshed.
7. Healthy Competition
“Life is a competition and we must win it” is why people collapse. Life is not a competition. It is a learning experience. Taking it as a fight is the only reason why some countries have the most stressed employees in the world.
A leader must involve in activities that re-define the meaning of competition within a professional arena. There can be games at some resort or a far-flung natural setting where teams can hike together.
This will encourage healthy mutual relationships, offer a chance to connect at an emotional level, allow new employees to connect with their seniors and vice-versa.
8. Exercise New Rules
Sexual harassment at the work place is unfortunately somewhat common. So what do most of these CMM level companies do? They have a set of rules for women employees and strict regulations under which the organization can fire an employee, blacklist the offender, and even put them behind bars.
However, these rules seldom go through any changes or any feedback protocol. This means managers do not sit co-workers and ask for their feedback. A leader, regardless of gender, must sit down and speak about the challenges, new perspectives, protocols, and suggestions.
It is time to shun the awkwardness and get truly professional about problems in the workplace. Female coworkers need to be heard on all levels and they need to speak up openly about potential dangers.
Managers must understand that simply chucking a predator off the team does not immediately guarantee safety. So they need to look after the workforce with an open mind.
9. Food and Meditation
Mental health equals many things. But it mostly relates to the health of your mind and soul. If they are not aligned in the proper way, things go berserk and haywire, resulting in poor performance, anger issues, and a lot of conflict.
So what sets the soul on fire? What are the things that truly benefit the body from the inside-out? All the aforementioned tips shall define the way they perceive a team leader and the organization. But what changes their mind in the first place are basically two things – healthy food and meditation.
So why not create a peaceful environment at the workplace instead? Leaders can encourage meditation sessions every day for 30 minutes, strive for arranging foods in the cafeteria that serves the body in the perfect way, such as fruit and vegetables.
Medical journals and literature prove that meditation activates the Sympathetic Nervous System, which is responsible for positive thoughts and happiness.
How Can Leaders Boost Employee Wellness?
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