Unpacking the 5 Elements of Employee Well-Being

Employee well-being is a foundational element in creating a workplace environment that not only nurtures individuals but also significantly enhances overall performance. A focus on well-being acknowledges that employees are not just resources but human beings with physical, mental, and emotional needs. When organizations prioritize the health and happiness of their workforce, it creates a positive ripple effect on productivity, engagement, and job satisfaction.

One of the key advantages of emphasizing employee well-being is the direct impact it has on performance. Physical well-being, including factors like access to wellness programs, ergonomic workspaces, and health benefits, contributes to increased energy levels and decreased absenteeism. A healthy workforce is more resilient and better equipped to handle the demands of the job, leading to improved performance and sustained productivity.

Moreover, addressing mental and emotional well-being is equally crucial. In today’s fast-paced work environments, stress and burnout are prevalent concerns. Organizations that invest in mental health resources, offer flexibility, and promote a supportive culture create an environment where employees feel valued and understood. This, in turn, enhances focus, creativity, and collaboration, directly influencing performance outcomes. Ultimately, the importance of employee well-being in the workplace is not just a compassionate approach; it’s a strategic imperative for organizations looking to optimize performance and thrive in the long run.

In this post, we discuss the 5 key elements of employee well-being in the workplace.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1. Why is employee well-being important in the workplace?

Employee well-being is crucial as it directly impacts overall job satisfaction, engagement, and productivity. Prioritizing well-being contributes to a positive work environment, reduces absenteeism, and enhances the physical, mental, and emotional health of employees, fostering a resilient and high-performing workforce.

Q2. What are the key elements of employee well-being?

Employee well-being comprises multiple elements, including physical health, mental well-being, and emotional resilience. These elements encompass factors such as access to wellness programs, mental health support, work-life balance, and a supportive organizational culture. Addressing these aspects collectively promotes a holistic approach to well-being.

Q3. How can organizations promote employee well-being in the workplace?

Organizations can promote employee well-being by offering wellness programs, creating ergonomic workspaces, fostering a culture of open communication, and providing mental health resources. Flexibility in work arrangements, recognition of work-life balance, and initiatives that address individual needs contribute to a workplace where employees feel supported and valued.

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Workplace Wellbeing Questionnaire: Best Practices & Questions

Modern work life is stressful for employees. The more stressed your employees are, the lower their productivity will be. Ideally, you want your employees to have the best health and wellbeing. To help you achieve that, this article will offer you ten tips on building the best workplace wellbeing surveys. 

What is an employee wellbeing survey?

An employee wellness survey contains questions intended to establish an employee’s degree of satisfaction, happiness, and productivity. This information is used to evaluate employees’ importance to their workplace well-being. If employees express dissatisfaction with their workplace, employers must address their concerns. If your company fails to do that, you’ll suffer from declining employee productivity and a reduced employee retention rate. Poor employee health and wellbeing costs an estimated $530 billion every year in the U.S. You don’t want your company contributing to that figure, so treat your employees well by surveying their wellness. 

Also read: Creating A Performance Based Culture In Your Organization

Don’t let low employee engagement levels impact your business. Download our step-by-step guide to understand and implement employee engagement surveys and boost your workforce productivity.

Take a look here. “The Ultimate Guide To Employee Engagement Survey And Templates”.”

Employee wellness survey components

A workplace wellbeing questionnaire should be properly designed with relevant questions. Don’t string along an incoherent list of random questions. The proper way to design an employee well-being questionnaire is to address questions under the following categories: 

Social Do your employees have adequate socializing time and opportunities? 
Physical Do your employees get enough time to exercise and destress themselves, and is their general state of physical health improving or at least not deteriorating? 
Environmental Does your staff have appropriate access to natural sunlight, water, clean air, and vegetation? 
Intellectual  Does your company have a healthy and competitive work culture that provides employees with enough opportunities to challenge themselves intellectually? Are your employees also given the freedom to experiment and innovate? 
Emotional Do stressed employees have access to adequate emotional support? For example, does your company encourage or provide counseling?
Spiritual Is your workplace culture accepting and progressive? Are any employees discriminated against because of their religious or political beliefs? 
Occupational Are employees satisfied with their occupations and feel that they have sufficient work-life balance? Do they also feel they have a future with your company?
Also read: 7 Reasons Why Goal Setting Is Important

Employee wellness survey benefits

Creating wellbeing survey questionnaires for employees has numerous benefits. Primarily, it helps management figure out employees’ workplace problems and improve workplace culture. 

  • Finding work-life balance

Many employees need to find a work-life balance, especially if they’re still in school or have children and dependents. It’s not always easy to find a work-life balance, so companies need to help employees maintain it. Employee wellbeing questionnaires are one of the best ways for management to do that. The workplace wellbeing questionnaire will provide management with the data they need to improve employees’ lives. 

  • Identify gaps

Most modern companies have employee wellness and benefits programs. These programs provide vital employee wellbeing services, but sometimes your corporate bureaucracy may overlook gaps that develop. Employee wellbeing questionnaires are the best way to identify gaps in your benefits and employee services program. Through a workplace wellbeing questionnaire, your employees will inform you about what they feel your company is lacking. 

  • Provide competent health insurance plans

Virtually all organizations provide their employees with health insurance plans. Similar to employee wellness programs and other benefit programs in general, these plans may lack in some areas. Often, a corporate bureaucracy does not recognize what areas they’re lacking in or what employees’ preferences are. The best way to identify employee requirements and feelings is with an employee wellbeing questionnaire. 

  • Improve employee satisfaction

Employee satisfaction is important for organizations. Employee satisfaction ensures that employees are productive and won’t be likely to leave the organization. As an employer, you want to maximize employee satisfaction. The best way to do so is via conducting workplace wellbeing questionnaires. The employee wellbeing questionnaires will provide management with a better understanding of where each employee stands. 

Also read: 10 Best Employee Feedback Tools To Track Performance

Importance of Employee Health and Wellbeing

Poor employee health leads to lower engagement levels

Employee productivity and engagement are directly related to wellbeing and health. The employees with the highest wellbeing will almost always also be the most productive. As such, you want to maximize employee engagement. Even just by providing the perception that you care is enough to encourage employee engagement. One study found that employees are 38% more engaged when they feel their organization cares for their wellbeing. 

Most absenteeism is tied to employees’ health

Poor health is the primary cause of employee absenteeism. The Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) reports that personal illness and stress causes 47% of employee absenteeism. To put that in perspective, personal illness and stress cause double the absenteeism caused by other reasons like family issues or personal problems. SHRM also reported that a majority of these health problems were preventable. Caring for your employees’ health and well-being is the best way to reduce absenteeism. 

Poor employee health can decrease productivity

People can’t work as effectively when they’re ill. Even if an employee is well enough not to take a sick day, they likely won’t be well enough to work optimally. When employees are in pain, they can’t concentrate on their work as much or invest as much effort. By stopping preventable health problems, your employees will always perform better. 

Tackling Employee Burnout

Maintaining a work-life balance in 2022 is harder than ever before. Stress levels and workplace dissatisfaction are arguably higher now than ever before. In such a professional ecosystem, you need to prevent your employees from experiencing burnout and exertion. Taking the time to provide your staff with workplace wellbeing questionnaires is one of the best ways to prevent burnout before it happens. 

Also read: Employee Burnout: What You Need To Know About It

Best Practices for Employee Health Survey

Your organization will produce the most effective employee wellbeing survey questionnaires by following these practices. 

Ask compelling and diverse questions

Your questions should provide specific and actionable information. It’s not enough to know whether things are good or bad. You need exact information. You need to ask exact information like “What’s your exercise routine?” instead of general questions like “Do you exercise?”. Your managers will learn whether an employee is fitness-centric by asking the specific question. You might have to ask some open-ended questions, and that’s fine. But try to make a majority of your questions as specific as possible. 

Make your wellness surveys short and simple

The best workplace wellbeing surveys take no more than 10 minutes to fill. Long questionnaires waste employees’ time, and they will be less willing to answer all questions honestly. Quality matters more than quantity, so provide your employees with a set of short and simple sentences that cut to the heart of the matter. Your employee wellbeing questionnaire should be long enough to provide you with all the vital information, but not so long that it bores people. 

Utilize multiple channels to communicate your survey

Most employees in any organization are flooded with information and communications every day. Emails, text messages, and notifications flood their devices every day, so you don’t want your workplace wellbeing questionnaire being lost in that flood. The best way to ensure that every employee receives the survey is to send it to them via multiple channels. Email, text, and share the survey with employees on every communication channel at your disposal. If possible, provide your employees with extra time for completing the survey. 

Also read: 10 Ways To Improve Communication At Workplace

Offer incentives for participating in your survey

Some employees won’t want to complete the workplace wellbeing questionnaire. Most likely, it’ll be because they don’t have time or aren’t interested. It’s also possible that they may have had a bad experience with employee surveys in the past, which has led them to be reluctant to fill in your survey. The best way to respond to this problem is to provide your employees with incentives. You don’t need to give them something large. Even entry into a contest for an UberEATS gift card is enough. Most importantly, you need to convince your employees that filling the survey is important for improving their wellbeing. 

Things to avoid in Wellness Surveys

When designing your employee wellbeing questionnaire, take care to avoid the following mistakes.

Avoid vague questions 

The meaning of each question should be perfectly clear. There should be no source of ambiguity. 

Don’t ask for identification 

Workplace wellbeing surveys should be entirely confidential. Your employees shouldn’t feel threatened by having their answers traced back to them. 

Also read: What Is A Performance Management System?

Don’t make all questions compulsory

Some employees may not be willing to share certain information. You need to respect their privacy by permitting them to withhold answers to personal questions. 

Employee Wellbeing Survey Questions

Designing a staff wellbeing questionnaire is a tedious task. It requires a thorough understanding of the workplace environment, employees’ job roles, and their expectations from work.

The following wellbeing survey questions will be helpful in creating an impactful questionnaire.

Work-life balance survey questions

  • Do you feel you’re provided adequate breaks? (Yes/No)
  • Are you able to balance your work and personal lives? (Yes/No)
  • What flexible work arrangements would you like us to introduce? (anonymous comments)

Fitness, nutrition, and health survey questions

  • Would you join a fitness club if we started one in the organization? (Yes/No)
  • Do you experience upper back, lower back, neck, elbow, or wrist pain while working? (Yes/No)
  • Do you feel office kitchen facilities are sufficient for your dietary requirements? (Yes/No)

Workload and stress survey questions

  • Do you feel you’re provided adequate facilities when you’re stressed? (Yes/No)
  • Do you feel your manager understands when you take a mental health day off? (Yes/No)
  • Are you comfortable giving your manager suggestions about your workload? (Yes/No)
Also read: What is the right organizational structure for this era?

Extracting Insights From Employee Wellness Survey

Just sending out and collecting survey results isn’t enough. You also need to analyze the data.

  • Choose a good analytics tool and feed the survey data to it. Use the analytics software to develop visual representations of the data. You could create simple graphs or bar charts representing survey results. Visually representing the survey results is one of the most effective ways to recognize trends and patterns. 
  • Sometimes, you may need more specialized tools to conduct more comprehensive analyses. Try to find themes in your data to figure out how your employees feel overall. Breaking down responses is one of the best ways to achieve that. For example, suppose stress concerns repeatedly show up in employees’ responses. In that case, it indicates your organization likely has strong stress and workload management problem.
  • Also, make sure you examine your employees’ qualitative data as comprehensively as you do their quantitative data. Qualitative data can provide you with an important insight that numbers can’t represent. Once you’ve fully analyzed survey results, share the conclusions with your entire organization, especially your managers, and discuss how you’ll improve things organization-wide.
Also read: 6 Trends That Will Shape Hr Strategies In 2022

In conclusion, employee wellness questionnaires are an excellent way to gauge employee wellbeing and health. Both employee wellness and health are vital considerations for a progressive organization that wants to maximize employee productivity and prevent the problems associated with employee burnout.

Book a demo with us to know how Engagedly can help you create effective employee surveys!

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The Complete Guide To Employee Health And Wellbeing Strategy

Employees’ health and wellbeing initiatives have always been a crucial offering of most organizations, but of recent have even gained more traction. The pandemic has presented us with a cruel reminder of why having an employee health and wellbeing strategy is essential for any organization. The report of increased stress levels, loneliness, anxiety, and sick days has highlighted more than ever the benefits of having a happy and fit workforce.

Also read: Employee Wellbeing And Absenteeism At Work

Since employees are the backbone of every organization, it is necessary to pay attention to their mental, physical and financial wellbeing. This article will explore the meaning of employee health and wellbeing strategy. We will also highlight steps you can take to develop an employee wellbeing strategy or, if one exists, improve it.

What is Employee Health and Wellbeing Strategy?

Before describing the employee wellbeing strategy, let’s first define what employee wellbeing is. Employee wellbeing refers to the physical, physiological, and financial welfare of employees of an organization. Therefore, an organizational wellbeing strategy is a plan, system, or actions taken to achieve the health and wellbeing of employees. 

The goal is to have a system or culture that helps employees thrive to the best of their ability. A study by SFM shows that 77% of companies have an employee wellbeing program. Another survey by Buffet National Wellness reveals that only 36% of organizations evaluate the effectiveness of employee wellbeing programs. A successful strategy ties the wellbeing program to other organizational strategic objectives-allowing management to measure its effectiveness.

What Areas Should Employee Health and Wellbeing Strategy Address?

When most people hear about employee wellbeing programs, they think of the psychological health aspect alone. But it also comprises the financial and physical. It is the holistic view of all three combined. And while you may lean towards one more than the others, it’s best to have elements of all when preparing an organizational wellbeing strategy.

Physical Wellbeing

Physical wellbeing is all about encouraging your employees to take their physical health seriously. A study published in ACOEM and led by Nicolaas P. Pronk shows that physically fit employees are more likely to engage more in the workplace. They are also more productive. Physical wellbeing aims to help employees stay fit through exercising and eating healthy. It is trying to help employees build healthy physical habits.

They are various ways organizations promote these habits, and some are:

  • Offering a discount on a gym membership
  • Free healthy snacks
  • Healthy Cooking Classes
  • Massage Therapist 
  • Fitness resources and workout videos, etc.

These are some examples of physical employee wellbeing activities in an organization. Some employers also provide health information like taking walks every thirty minutes, sitting positions to help with posture and back pains, or even specialized tables and chairs to help you practice these healthy work habits.

One aspect that seems not to pop up as often is the importance of rest and sleep. A study by AASM (American Academy of Sleep Medicine) shows workers who report sleeping 5-6 hours experienced 19% productivity loss, and those who slept under 5 hours were 29% less productive. Adequate rest is as essential as exercise and nutrition when thinking about the wellbeing of your employees.

Also read: 7 Ways To Curb Workplace Negativity

Mental Wellbeing

Mental wellbeing is the one that has attracted the most attention in recent times because of the pandemic. It covers the state of the employee’s mind. Issues like a sense of meaning in what they do in the workplace, personal accomplishments, and working relationships factor into the employee’s mental wellbeing.

Some ways organizations have helped tackle this is by offering.

  • Flexible Working days
  • Offering mandatory mental health training for managers
  • Offering courses on mental health
  • Reviewing and managing the workload of employees
  • Providing the tools necessary to deliver on their assignments
  • Meditation classes
  • Non-monetary rewards
  • Access to a psychologist

A study by the World Health Organisation shows that the global economy loses up to 1 trillion dollars because of depression and anxiety. The figure shows just how important the mental health of employees is.

An essential aspect of mental wellbeing is its social aspect. How employees interact with their coworkers and bosses in the workplace is crucial. As well as their social support system outside the workplace, like friends and family members. A positive relationship can help them bring about a decent level of stability.

Financial Wellbeing

Financial wellbeing is crucial because one primary reason people work is to earn money. It covers the present upkeep of the employees, retirement plans, job security, and debt management.

One thing we saw during the pandemic was layoffs, something that threatened the financial wellbeing of many people. Another was cuts or removal of certain perks. 

So what are some ways in which employers have tried to support their employees?

  • Complimentary perks like; free movie tickets or coffee.
  • Discounts on meals in certain restaurants or holiday destinations.
  • Cashback schemes.
  • Vouchers at certain grocery stores.
  • Insurance and pension packages
  • Payment schemes for smartphones and laptops

Now that we have gone through the three primary aspects of health and wellbeing. Let’s look at why companies need to take them seriously.

Why is Employee Health and Wellbeing Strategy Important to Companies?

Every organization wants assurance about their investments or at least proof that the investment is worthwhile. Most companies that have not taken the wellbeing strategy in the workplace seriously argue that it isn’t necessary. This assumption couldn’t be more inaccurate. A well-executed employee wellbeing strategy has its advantages, some of which we will highlight in this section.

Improves Productivity

A well-executed wellbeing strategy can lead to improved productivity. A 2017 GSK study that surveyed workers in China, India and the Philippians revealed 60% of them said they experienced head pain relating to their jobs, leading to loss of productivity. Health and wellness programs improve employee engagement, which in turn improves employee productivity. 

Also read: The Impact Of Employee Engagement On Productivity

Helps to Reduce Costs

A company with an ineffective employee health and wellness program is a company that will react to health-related problems. The disadvantage of reacting rather than being proactive to situations is that the company pays for them. And we mean literally, it will cost you more to treat a problem than to prevent it.

According to the Indiana State Department of Health, employers on average can save $3.48 on lower health care and $5.82 on absenteeism costs for every $1 spent on employee wellbeing. 

Helps to Reduce Stress Levels

Stress is a problem every organization seeks to minimize. A CDC study revealed that 40% of workers are extremely stressed and 25% of them experience burnout often. Stress levels can be regulated and maintained with the proper wellness plan in place. 

Attracts Talents 

According to a 2019 survey by safety and health magazine, 87 percent of workers between 18-34 consider employee health and wellbeing when choosing a Job. This is proof that talents today are watching out for companies that take good care of their employees. Another study by APA showed employees are also more likely to recommend a company as a good place to work if they support wellbeing initiatives. These studies prove that an excellent program will attract the best talents.

Improves Employee Retention

Fatigue and burnout are two deep concerns for organizations. A study by the American Psychological Association shows that employees are 2.6 times more likely to quit their jobs due to fatigue. The same report also revealed that people are 23% more likely to visit an emergency room and 69% more likely to call in sick. 

All the above points are viable reasons you should start an employee health and wellbeing program and if one already exists, work on it to get better.

Also read: Employee Retention Strategy: How To Retain Top Talent?

Key Points to Consider for a Successful Employee Health and Wellbeing Strategy

When it comes to implementing the right organizational wellbeing strategy, it isn’t a one-fit-all approach. Each organization has their own peculiar need, and therefore it requires a lot of customization from the HR team. This section will highlight some tips to remember when setting up an employee wellbeing initiative.

Know Your Employees

The first thing to remember is you cannot set up an employee wellbeing program when you do not know their pain point. It’s easy to be swept away by what other companies are introducing, but remember that each organization has its own tailored needs. The first thing you need to do is take a kind of census. It can be a quick survey highlighting the pressing needs of the employees. The essential thing to note is to involve them in the development process.

Link Wellbeing Strategy to Company Objectives

One way to make sure your health and wellbeing strategy goes well is to tie the goals to business objectives. Doing this ensures that you are clear on the goals of the employee wellbeing program. An example is setting a goal of reducing absenteeism by 5% within the next two years. 

Setting an obvious goal ensures that the company can keep track. Another goal that can complement this is to improve revenue by 5% in the same period. Setting these goals allows you to measure the effectiveness of the health and wellbeing initiative.

Also read: 3 Factors To Remember While Setting Employee Goals

Get Leadership Support

For any strategy to succeed, it must come from top management. As the HR team involves employees, it’s also important to involve senior management. A study by APA shows that 73% of employees supported by their top management said their wellbeing initiative program was effective. Only 11% of employees not backed by senior management agreed the health and wellbeing initiative was effective. 

Communicate The Initiative Frequently

One vital aspect of implementing any strategy is communicating effectively. Part of your strategy will be an engaging way to launch the program. How would you pitch the idea to the employees? 

Ideally, there shouldn’t be a problem since they were involved, but there is nothing wrong with reminding them of the issues the wellbeing program solves. It is also best to have weekly, bi-weekly or monthly reminders on the wellness programs employees have access to so they make use of them. It’s also essential to introduce new employees to the various perks to stay informed.

Take Regular Feedback

No strategy is perfect, so you need feedback from those using the program. Employee feedback is key in improving and adapting the health and wellbeing strategy for the organisation. It also keeps employees engaged with the program. Companies can carry out feedback quarterly, bi-annually, or annually to get a feel of its effect.

Continue Improving the Process

Collecting feedback is only one of the two-step processes. Implementing and putting the feedback into effect is the other side of the process.

A bonus tip here is when starting, begin with a few initiatives. Monitor and improve them, and when ingrained into the company system, add another wellbeing activity to it. For example, if your company starts a subsidised gym membership, don’t start with a mental health first training session at the same time. 

It’s best to have other wellbeing activities that complement the subsidized gym membership, like nutrition classes. This way, you can measure their effectiveness since they aim to achieve the same goal – employees in better physical shape.

In conclusion, creating a successful employee health and wellbeing strategy isn’t a walk in the pack. It involves research on the needs of the organization and the employees, and trial and error. What will make the process a success is it involves everyone, from the employees to top management. 

Learn how Engagedly can help you with employee health and wellbeing by requesting us for a demo.

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Employee Mental Health : Ways To Support Your Team

Managers often tend to ignore and sideline mental health issues while discussing workplace problems. While managers commonly talk about other issues such as work-life balance, workplace bias, bullying, etc., mental health is one topic that gets completely ignored in most organizations. 

Did you know that 1 in 6.8 people experience mental health problems in the workplace?

The above numbers have in fact increased over the past year due to the pandemic. Continuous remote working has taken a toll on the mental health of employees. Reports of anxiety, depression, isolation, stress, and fatigue have increased. It has resulted in increased absenteeism, reduced productivity, disengagement, and burnout.

Also Read: Employee Wellbeing And Absenteeism At Work

It is high time organizations recognize the importance of mental health issues and help build a conducive and supportive environment for employees.

Here are some ways in which organizations can help.

Spread Awareness About Mental Health

The first step to solving any problem always begins with awareness. This could be through the form of workshops, seminars, conferences, etc. held by certified mental health professionals. They can help spread awareness about mental health and de-stigmatize the problem.

Spread awareness about common mental health problems like depression, anxiety, social phobia, etc. Encourage your employees to come forward and open up about their mental issues, so that you can help them overcome their issues.

Don’t Treat It As A Taboo

Why do some employees struggle with having good mental health? There are many reasons, but one of the main reasons is not opening up about it to anyone. Many people shy away from expressing the mental issues that they are battling daily.

Create a culture that encourages employees to open up about it.

Also Read: The Impact of Employee Engagement On Productivity

Identify Changes In Your Employees’ Behaviour

Not all employees who have mental issues can come forward and talk about their problems. Sometimes, as a manager, you need to go the extra mile and look for changes in the behavior of your team members.

Common symptoms that you can look for are irritability, depression, withdrawal from contact with others, loss of motivation, mood swings, etc. If you find someone from your team displaying these behaviors, it is time for you to have a conversation about their mental health issues.

Connect With Your Employees

Once you realize that a team member has changed their behavior or is exhibiting symptoms of mental health issues, it is best to have a conversation about it. Do not make assumptions before having the conversation; remember that your impression can be wrong too.

Connect with them over informal or formal sessions and talk with them and give them support. Ask them simple questions and encourage them to share what triggers their problem more. Also, give them frequent feedback on how they work and they can improve. It will keep them engaged and busy at work.

Sometimes, people battling mental health issues just want someone to hear out what they have to say, so listen to them without judging or giving out opinions instantly.

Supportive Work Culture

A supportive work environment is one that practices healthy communication and does not engage in toxic or harmful behavior. It shouldn’t make employees feel stressed. A distinction has to be made between job-related stressors and environmental stressors. Stress is a part and parcel of any job, and employees understand that on certain occasions, they might experience stressful situations. However, when these stressful situations frequently affect their ability to do their job or impact their ability to function, that is when it becomes a problem. Consequently, organizations need to be observant of the environment in which their employees work. 

Also Read: 7 Signs To Help You Recognize A Toxic Workplace

Creating a healthy workplace environment might necessitate organizations completely overhauling their workplace policies to be more inclusive. While this task might seem painful, it will go a long way toward creating a workplace that employees want to be a part of.

Design Policies Around Mental Health

Oftentimes, organizations have health policies but they might be cursory health policies or focus more on physical health. One way organizations can be more inclusive and supportive is to revamp their policies. It should cover all aspects of health and wellness. This includes creating provisions for employees with disabilities or employees with mental health problems. Also, adding or offering resources (through the employee assistance programs) that they can use to seek help. It is also important that employees be aware of these policies and use them when they need it. Having a good policy but not being able to use it renders the policy useless. It also prevents employees from seeking the health and care they need.

Leadership Support 

Employee wellness initiatives cannot move forward or even function successfully if they do not have the enthusiastic support of leaders and managers at an organization. It will not only lend more weight to mental health initiatives but will reassure employees that their well-being is important to organizations.

mental health

Employee Experience: Show Your Employees You Care

Researches show a clear link between rewards and recognition and employee retention. A survey by Achievers brought to light some alarming results. 55% of 1700 respondents were planning to switch jobs. When probed deeper, the number one reason for it was lack of recognition. A much as 69% of these employees went on to mention that a more thoughtful reward and recognition program would inspire them to stay on. This was in 2018.

In 2021, the situation does not appear to be any better. There is not a soul unaffected by everything that has been paining our world in the past couple of years. Despite such a tough environment, employees are constantly striving to maintain balance and deliver. So as an employer, a ‘Thank You’ is the least you can give to your employees.

If you wish to make sure your high performing workers continue to deliver and remain in your organization, here are some things you can practice:

Work Life Balance:

Now that most employees are working from home, screen time has soured throughout the global population. They overwork without even realizing it. This leaves most employees stressed and exhausted, which ultimately affects their productivity. With the workplace constantly intruding into personal space, they get less time to spend with their families. Result? Employee burnout. Gallup, in their recent research, highlights that employees who report burnout are 2.6 times more likely to look for a new job.

Employees should know when to switch-off, and organizations must understand the importance of work-life balance. Having a work-life balance is as important as having a good salary, job satisfaction, security, employee benefits and perks, etc.

Also Read: Embracing Hybrid Work Culture In 2021

Mental Health for Employees: 

As per the U.S. National Comorbidity Survey for Americans between ages 15 to 54, 18% of employed individuals experienced symptoms of mental health issues.

Often times, while discussing workplace issues, many articles or surveys highlight bullying, poor managers, workplace biases, and work-life balance. But mental health is repeatedly overlooked. It’s a very serious issue that needs to be given importance like any other.

Working from home has allowed employees to work from anywhere and work flexibly. However, it has led to other issues such as insomnia, anxiety, and isolation. As a manager or an HR, you can’t always act as a therapist or a shrink, but you can take a series of steps to ensure that your employees are doing well.

  • Informal conversations to understand how they are doing
  • Conduct anonymous surveys
  • Equal importance to mental health, like physical health
  • Train employees to identify their mental health issues 
  • Online therapy and counseling sessions as a part of employee benefits and perks
  • Encourage everyone to speak up

Necessary Physical Fitness: 

The perfect alignment of mind, body and soul makes for a balanced human being. So physical wellbeing, as we have mentioned earlier, is as important as mental stability. When employees were working out of the office, they had access to ergonomically designed workstations, gyms, healthy eating options, etc. But with work from home, many of us have the habit of working from the couch or bed. There is no fixed routine for work or breaks. It leads to obesity and fatigue, which ultimately affects the productivity of the employee.

Here are a few things which you can do to ensure your employees’ physical wellbeing:

  • Set up their remote workspaces
  • Conduct exercise and yoga sessions online and encourage your employees to take part
  • Gift your employees’ smart bands to track their steps
  • Offer incentives to your employees for calories burnt
Also Read: Employee Burnout: What You Need To Know About It

Communicate Often:

In the global workspace, which is mostly remote, employees feel disconnected and isolated from their teammates and the organization because of a lack of communication. So, with a sturdy communication process in place, employees feel connected and valued. Have a one-on-one connect with your team members, or encourage them to share their concerns in team meetings. Let them know you are there to help them out if they face any difficulty working remotely. Encourage your employees to block time for virtual water cooler breaks so that they can have a casual discussion with their colleagues. Additionally, ensure that they have the tools and software required to make communication and collaboration easy. Some of the most commonly used tools are:

  • Engagedly for real-time performance management, feedback, rewards, and gamification
  • Slack, Google Meet, and Skype for communication and easy collaboration
  • Asana, Basecamp, and Trello for Project Management

Your workers are your assets! So a good employee recognition program is beyond necessary for your organization. Have you started taking care of them yet?


Do you want to know how Engagedly can help you with employee recognition and employee retention? Then request for a live demo.

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Employee Wellbeing And Absenteeism At Work

The workplace has proven to cause a heavy impact on employees’ health and wellbeing. Causes can derive from physical factors like incorrect manual handling to psychological ones like work-related stress. Collectively, they can build up to high levels of sick leave and absence.

Concentrating on your employee’s health and wellbeing can exponentially improve morale and attendance.

You should treat health and wellbeing as a vital factor in your company, whilst hosting a safe working environment. All of which can ensure your employee feel comfortable and confident as members of your business.

Absence rates and occupational health

The ONS reported absence related to sickness decreased by 1.8% in 2020. Which is the lowest rate reported since 1995.

But, according to HSE, it’s estimated that 38.8 million working days were lost because of work-related ill-health and non-fatal work accidents.

High numbers like these can add up to great business losses. Lost workdays, due to illness and injuries, snowball into lost time, resources, and productivity.

One of the biggest responsibilities you have is to look after the welfare of your employee. Without this, your workers will drop out of the business faster than you can anticipate. 

Also Read: Embracing Hybrid Work Culture In 2021

Of course, it’s impossible for a workplace to be completely absent-free. But having a healthy approach for dealing with absences is a must – for the employer and employees.

Employees who are fit for work will produce and perform more efficiently. So, if they are healthy (physically and mentally), you’ll benefit from having a more resilient workforce.

Causes of sick leave

The implications on employee wellbeing and business productivity can cost a business more than what you might foresee.

Absences due to physical and mental illnesses can derive from all sorts of reasons.

Keep awareness and sensitivity for all kinds of absence issues. Remember, an employee may not exude physical illness. But they could be suffering mental strains, like depression or anxiety.

Employers themselves can be found guilty of direct inflictions, which lead to ill health. Common scenarios like this that can ruin employee engagement are:

  • Setting unrealistic targets and deadlines.
  • Being subconsciously biased.
  • Constantly highlighting mistakes.
  • Creating a negative atmosphere.

Take a positive and proactive approach to employee wellbeing. You’ll soon see a reduction in absence numbers. Concentrating on employee engagement is also a must. You’ll soon see it return as genuine commitment and loyalty to your business. 

How can your business benefit from positive employee wellbeing?

If you were to calculate costs that derive from poor employee health, you’ll easily see the impact on your business. Sick leave, lost hours, employee turnover – the effects will add up daily and in the long run.

Workplace health and wellbeing initiatives can reduce absence costs, alongside:

  • Sick leave and absence.
  • Performance issues.
  • Employee turnover.
  • Recruitment and training fees.
  • Health and wellbeing.
  • Liability and litigation risks.

If you establish these, you can easily display your business as a place of prosperity and growth. 

Also Read: Understanding Employee Wellbeing In 2021

Creating a healthy and safe work environment

Being able to spot and determine the mood of the workspace can prove beneficial for you. It’s easily done by using wellbeing trackers and charts. These can help outline your employees’ conditions – daily and in the future.

Having initial objectives that support your business can significantly improve:

  • Employee health and wellbeing.
  • Performance and engagement.
  • Individual and team efforts.
  • Productivity and motivation.
  • Brand-name and image.
  • Customer service.

We are living in a world where flexible working is fast becoming the norm. So, make sure remote workers are protected and safe as they work in isolation or off-location.

Promoting wellbeing

You and your management should openly encourage promoting wellbeing at work. It’s vital you present a clear message for the awareness of employee health and wellbeing.

This can be initiated through smaller gestures, like not answering emails after work hours, or taking lunch breaks daily.

Having open wellbeing conversations can show your employee who they should contact for help. This is crucial for those who are unconfident in raising issues, or those who are suffering alone.

Train your line managers to manage cases empathetically, especially for mental health issues. Keep promoting dialogue, feedback, and engagement – you’ll significantly boost morale and productivity alongside.

Wellbeing schemes and procedures

Supporting employee wellbeing through schemes and classes can significantly improve physical and mental health. Some great ways to do this is by providing:

  • Counseling and therapy sessions.
  • Physiotherapy and gym membership.
  • Paid leave for medical appointments.
  • Encouraging healthy lifestyle choices.
  • Sports and exercise classes.

Having these at discounted rates means more employees gain access to these schemes–all without breaking your bank.

Workplace health and safety

Under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974, all employers have a duty of care for the safety of their employees–and this includes wellbeing.

By managing workplace health and safety, you can control and reduce potential injuries and accidents. And fewer illnesses means fewer absences. Some important H&S obligations your business needs to possess are:

  • Risk assessments.
  • Accident prevention.
  • Health protection.
  • Training and awareness.
  • Recording and reporting.

It’s also a good idea to reassess your workplace policies and risk assessments, and update them.

Also Read: 7 Ways To Curb Workplace Negativity

By preventing and reducing the risk of accidents, you can identify:

  • Which work tasks might cause injuries?
  • Who is likely to be subject to risks?
  • Any reasonable steps needed to reduce risks?

Identify and document these hazards and risks. It’ll help you manage repeat situations. Also, keep training up to date, utilise PPE if needed, and run assessments that are legally mandatory.

With thorough management, you’ll effectively comply with your legal duty of care, whilst reducing sick leave and absence. 

Take care of employee wellbeing

Assessing your absence rates can showcase a great evaluation for your employee’s wellbeing. 

Aspire to provide accessible and practical methods for improving health, wellbeing, and engagement at work.

Controlling levels accurately and timely can prove to be an effective wellbeing strategy. It’s the perfect way to record and manage absence and wellbeing together.


Kayleigh Frost Engagedly Guest Blogger

Kayleigh Frost works at Health Assured and has extensive knowledge of mental health and wellbeing, with a specific focus on the workplace. As a qualified Mental Health First Aider and a clinical department head, she strives for excellence and superior service delivery to all.

Want to know how Engagedly can help you improve employee experience? Request for a live demo.

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Why Companies Should Embrace Emotional Vulnerability Among Employees

Workplaces can inadvertently embrace toxic positivity by requiring employees to express faked happiness while on the job. 

This creates stress, emotional dissonance, social alienation, and burnout among employees – and ultimately decreases productivity and retention. 

The solution

Companies should learn to embrace emotional vulnerability among employees. 

Read on to discover why this is important and how companies can start building a culture of vulnerability in the workplace.

What Does It Mean to Embrace Vulnerability?

Remember, perfect is the enemy of good. Embracing vulnerability can be an asset, when done correctly.  

To answer what it means to embrace vulnerability, we have to take a look at the psychology of emotional vulnerability and apply it to the workplace.

For the most part, when people hear the word vulnerability, they link the term to negativity, such as personal mistakes or software weakness. Either way, it spells professional danger for them. 

But, there is a new wave of thinking which shows that embracing vulnerability in the workplace is actually crucial to success.

According to Dr. Brene Brown, an author and vulnerability researcher, “vulnerability is uncertainty, risk, and emotional exposure.”

embracing vulnerability as uncertainity

Source: Oprah.com

  • Far from being something negative, vulnerability is actually the courage and willingness to show up and be seen, in spite of uncertain outcomes
  • It’s about taking off your workplace armor and allowing yourself to have discussions that may be uncomfortable, yet essential
  • It promotes respect in the workplace and means that coworkers can trust and confide in each other more
  • Instead of getting discouraged by their failures, teams can learn from failure what they need to improve and grow

Finally, embracing vulnerability also means crystallizing your company values so current employees and candidates see that they can bring the whole of themselves to the workplace, as opposed to having a professional self at work that is very different from who they are at home.

Also Read: Performance Management Software:A Buyer’s Guide

Being vulnerable can mean different things to different people. 

And, at work, it can translate in a number of ways for employees, such as: 

  • Letting their team know that they’re feeling overwhelmed on a project and need a break
  • Admitting to their employer that they don’t know how to solve a pressing problem
  • Apologizing when they realize that they’ve made a mistake
  • Saying sorry when they snap at a colleague after a long day

Simply put, being vulnerable, for employees, is all about being able to show other people that they are not perfect, that they make mistakes, and that they don’t have all the answers – that they’re human!

Embracing vulnerability can also be beneficial for a company to win over customers as well. While it’s never ideal that a company make a ton of mistakes, when someone at the company does, it’s best to get ahead of the issue by publicly admitting it, apologizing, and explaining how it will be avoided in the future.  

While a company can do all of this with the help of an email marketing tool, it may be best suited as a video posted to social media if the budget calls for it and it’s a big enough mistake. 

Why Is It Important to Embrace Emotional Vulnerability? 

By embracing emotional vulnerability, employees will be able to authentically express themselves, establish strong connections with peers, and generate a sense of empowerment and freedom that will translate to increased productivity and retention. 

This is crucial to workplace success. 

Emotional vulnerability lets employees connect on a different level and leads to better collaboration and increased cohesiveness. 

Below, we take a look at 5 reasons why companies should strive to embrace emotional vulnerability among employees.

1. Build a Culture of Trust

Trust plays a huge role in vulnerability. Employees need the courage to trust others and they, themselves, must have the integrity to be worthy of others’ trust. 

There can be no vulnerability without trust. For growth to occur in a relationship, it requires both parties to open up and share all of who they are with each other – not just the good. For this to happen, trust must be present. 

So how can this be done in the workplace? 

Here are a few tips you can use to encourage employees to exemplify trust and trustworthiness:

  • Boundaries: Employees need to set clear boundaries and respect those set by their fellow employees.
  • Accountability: They must own up to their own mistakes, apologize, and fix them whenever possible.
  • Reliability: They must do what they say they’ll do, which means they shouldn’t over-promise at work but be clear about their limitations and deliver on commitments.
  • Vault: They should never share confidential information – especially when the information is not theirs to share.
  • Integrity: They should always do what’s right instead of what is easy and practice their values rather than simply professing them.
  • Non-Judgment: Employees should answer requests for help without judgment of those who are asking and be able to ask for help themselves.
  • Generosity: They should extend the benefit of the doubt to the intentions, words, or behaviors of other colleagues.

2. Enhance Rising Skills

This refers to the resilience of getting back up after a failure. Dr. Brown states that employees who are willing to risk being vulnerable, brave, and courageous are those who risk getting their ass kicked.

This is a natural consequence of courage and it’s also the reason why many find it so difficult to allow themselves to be vulnerable at work.

But, she further explains that it’s just as important to rise and pick yourself up after being knocked down. This is the inevitable suffering that comes with courage, and honing their “rising skills” can help employees weather those hardships. 

Ultimately, those employees who have tried and failed – and tried again are those who develop resilience within themselves to find the true path to success.

3. Clarify Business Values

Clarify Business Values


This is what reminds employees of why they tried in the first place, and it’s a consequence of allowing themselves to be vulnerable. 

The majority of businesses have some type of company values, yet relatively few actually live them. Our values define us in our deepest levels and businesses need to operationalize their values and translate them into specific behaviors that are not only observable but measurable too. 

This gives employees who are willing to be vulnerable something to call on when they get knocked down. 

It gives them the strength to try again and helps you build a more courageous culture where colleagues can have discussions that are crucial to your business even if they are uncomfortable.

Also Read: Creating A Positive Workplace Culture For Your Employees 

4. Drive Workplace Innovation 

Vulnerability in the workplace drives innovation, creativity, and change. Some of the best ideas are those that are cultivated in an environment of openness, collaboration, and meaningful exchange. 

Each time someone brings a new idea to the table, there is vulnerability present. That’s why it’s crucial for businesses to create a workplace environment that not only accepts and embraces emotional vulnerability but also encourages and supports it. 

That way, employees will have the confidence and courage to think creatively and express new ideas.

For instance, if someone at your company wants to begin hosting a podcast to share the company story, embrace the idea and try to have them explain the ideas before telling them no. 

5. Foster Successful Teamwork

A foundation of trust is needed for effective teamwork. This requires the ability for team members to be vulnerable with others. Hardly anything of value will get done if employees don’t feel safe enough to be open with their coworkers. 

Each person on the team needs to know they won’t be punished for speaking up, disagreeing, or taking risks. 

Disagreements are inevitable when groups of people with different languages and cultures come together to create new things or solve problems. 

But, people need to know that it’s all right for them to speak plainly and offer feedback. That’s why this is something that should be encouraged so you can have authentic, vulnerable communication that fosters more successful teamwork. 

But, for such disagreements to be productive, it’s essential to have open, respectful, and honest communication.

Building a Culture of Vulnerability Among Employees

I hope by now you’ve seen that vulnerability in the workplace is an asset and not a liability, as most people believe. It’s something that is critical for both leaders and employees alike. 

When you allow vulnerability among employees and remove uncertainty in the workplace, it’s a winning formula for creating a dynamic and sustainable culture of innovation, teamwork, and trust. 

As a result, your organization will experience more security, respect, and engagement among employees, which will ultimately lead to improved business results.


It’s crucial to note that as important as it is to encourage emotional vulnerability in the workplace, this can be seriously uncomfortable for many people. 

There are many steps you can take to encourage more vulnerability among employees. One important step is to start with you

Practice Sharing Your Own Feelings

Vulnerability is not about over sharing, but you should learn to acknowledge your own feelings and then practice sharing them in order to foster stronger relationships with your colleagues. This encourages other employees to do the same. 

It can be as simple as sharing something that you’re feeling eager and excited about – or you could share that you’re feeling worn out, and a little disengaged – as opposed to answering “I’m fine” when someone at work asks you “How are you?”

This may be a little uncomfortable for you, but, with practice, you’ll get there.

Everyone has vulnerabilities, personality components, and emotions that make up good and bad. 

Also Read: Understanding Employee Wellbeing In 2021

By hiding such vulnerabilities, employees are essentially denying a huge part of their personalities.

But, when you start taking steps toward embracing emotional vulnerability among employees, employees will feel comfortable taking off their workplace armor and everyone will benefit as a result.

There’s just one caveat to all of this…

The Caveat

Having explained how important it is for companies to allow employees to be vulnerable at work, it’s still important to note that companies will have to design processes and systems for the management of employees’ strong emotions.

Although vulnerability is still seen as taboo in many workplaces, things are changing as more and more employees and leaders capitalize on their own vulnerabilities in the workplace environment to build real connections, take advantage of the growth and opportunities that arise through engagement, respect, and trust.


The bottom line is that vulnerability isn’t something that only applies to personal relationships and personal development. It’s also a crucial aspect of the professional self employees bring to work. 

By taking the plunge and embracing vulnerability among your employees, you’ll open the door to increased creativity, innovation, and productivity in your business. 

Over to you. Do you think that your business could benefit from embracing emotional vulnerability among employees? Sound off in the comments below!


Ron Stefanski

Ron Stefanski is an online entrepreneur and marketing professor who has a passion for helping people create and market their own online business. You can learn more from him by visiting OneHourProfessor.com

You can also connect with him on YouTube or Linkedin.

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Understanding Employee Wellbeing In 2024

2020 has been a busy and difficult year for everyone! While employees were busy settling down with the idea of remote work, HR leaders were busy in making this transition seamless.

For many of us, the transition from a physical workspace to a remote one has been palatable. Work from home has its own benefits for the employees and the organization. It helped companies reduce their costs and recruit a global workforce. Similarly, employees have gained the flexibility to work from anywhere around the world.

Also Read: Tips To Manage Stress Of Your Remote Team

However, recent studies and reports suggest otherwise. They highlight that continuous work from home has resulted in increased stress, anxiety, and feelings of isolation among employees. It has affected their mental and physical health and has increased disengagement.

The health and wellness of an employee have a direct impact on an organization’s productivity. Companies and HR leaders must treat employee health as a top priority and realign, and change the existing employee wellness initiatives to support remote employees.

Here are four employee wellbeing initiatives that we expect to see in 2024.

Employee Wellbeing Initiative #1: More Importance To Work-Life Balance

With employees working from home, they often tend to spend more time in front of their screens. They tend to overwork without even realizing it. This leaves the employee stressed and exhausted, which ultimately affects their productivity. Moreover, they get less time to spend with their families. Gallup, in their recent research, highlights that employees who report burnout are 2.6 times more likely to look for a new job.

Employees should know when to switch off, and organizations must understand the importance of work-life balance. Having a work-life balance is as important as having a good salary, job satisfaction, security, employee benefits and perks, etc.

Also Read: The Essential Guide To Employee Productivity In A Hybrid Setup

Employee Wellbeing Initiative #2: Address Employee Mental Health

According to the U.S. National Comorbidity Survey for Americans ages 15 to 54, 18% of employed individuals experienced symptoms of mental health issues.

While discussing workplace issues, almost every article or survey revolves around topics such as bullying, bad managers, workplace biases, and work-life balance. However, the topic of mental health is often overlooked. The mental health issue is one serious issue that needs to be given importance like any other.

Working from home has allowed employees to work from anywhere and flexibly at any time. However, it has led to other issues such as insomnia, anxiety, and isolation. As a manager or an HR, you cannot act as a therapist or a shrink, but you can take a series of steps to ensure that your employees are doing good.

  • Have informal conversations with them from time to time to understand how they are doing
  • Conduct anonymous surveys
  • Give equal importance to mental health as physical health
  • Give every employee training so that they can identify their mental health issues because often the signs are ignored
  • Make online therapy and counseling sessions a part of employee benefits and perks
  • Encourage everyone to speak up

Also Read: Employee Burnout: What You Need To Know About It

Employee Wellbeing Initiative #3: Your Employees Need To Be Physically Fit Too

While we cannot undermine the importance of mental health, physical well-being is important too. When employees were working out of the office they had access to ergonomically designed workstations, gyms, healthy eating options, etc. But with work from home, many of us have the habit of working from the couch or bed. Additionally, there is no fixed routine for work or breaks. It leads to obesity and fatigue, which ultimately affects the productivity of the employee.

Here are a few things that you can do to ensure your employee’s physical well-being:

  • Invest in their remote workspace set-up
  • Conduct exercise and yoga sessions online and encourage your employees to take part
  • Gift your employees’ smart bands to track their steps
  • Offer incentives to your employees for calories burnt

Also Read: Virtual Onboarding: A New Reality

Employee Wellbeing Initiative #4: Communication Is The Key

In the remote workspace, employees often feel disconnected and isolated from their teammates and the organization because of a lack of communication. Whether casual or formal, it helps employees to stay connected. Connect with your team over a one-on-one or in group meetings to hear their concerns. Let them know that you are there to help them out if they face any difficulty working remotely. Encourage your employees to block time for virtual water cooler breaks so that they can have a casual discussion with their colleagues. Additionally, ensure that they have the tools and software required to make communication and collaboration easy. Some of the most commonly used tools are:

  • Engagedly–  for real-time performance management, feedback, rewards, and gamification
  • Slack, Google Meet, and Skype- for communication and easy collaboration
  • Asana, Basecamp, and Trello- for Project Management

Your employees are your assets! Have you started taking care of them yet?

Do you want to know how Engagedly can help you with Employee Engagement and Employee well-being? Request for a live demo.

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