Workplace mental health: is it possible to support employee wellness and harmony?
Mental health is on the agenda on a global scale as the world faces the impact of multiple challenges and uncertainties over the past few years. The World Economic Forum (WEF) alerted in a recent report to the effect of high inflation and the rising cost of living, geopolitical instability, and the failure of policies to tackle the climate crisis. The WEF further estimates that the cost of mental health conditions will rise to $6 trillion in 2030, making it an issue costlier than the combination of diabetes, cancer, and respiratory problems.
Work environments play a big part in mental health and a person’s ability to achieve work-life harmony. More than one side issue, companies are learning that employee well-being is directly connected to their productivity, bottom line, and eventual talent retention. Everyone benefits from wellness initiatives in the workplace, especially in the highly stressful environment of IT companies with professionals pursuing ambitious IT careers.
Striking the right equilibrium between professional and personal life will not only improve overall well-being but also boosts productivity and job satisfaction. In fact, specialists say that employees who are healthy and in a positive state of mind ensure high productivity levels and achieve targets.
Let’s take a look at how these things intertwine and how companies can promote wellness and harmony:
- Boost social interactions: socialisation in the workplace is extraordinarily important at the individual level to strengthen organisational culture and increase team productivity. This can be achieved by fostering team-building activities such as collaborative projects and events that encourage the attendance of workers’ family members. Socialisation in the workplace has proven even more important in the era of remote work: a study by tech giant Microsoft says workers “may feel socially isolated, guilty and try to compensate” when working remotely.
- Promote emotional intelligence: leaders should champion strategies that make workers feel more valued and supported in the workplace by promoting a culture of trust, practicing active listening, cultivating a team spirit, and showing empathy in interactions. These things really do trickle from the top down.
- Offer continuous performance feedback and analysis: Leadership plays a key role in supporting and guiding the teams. Leaders must communicate regularly and create a policy of proximity with their team members, being approachable and available to exchange ideas.
- Create a growth culture: It’s very important that companies encourage the personal and professional growth of their employees by making an active effort to create continuous learning opportunities, such as courses, workshops, and others. They should make sure that professionals have the support and resources they need to work as efficiently as possible. A recent study by Glint points to training and growth as the two main factors that professionals mention as decisive contributions to a positive work environment.
Is it possible to support employee wellness and harmony in the workplace? Yes, it is. Companies can and should promote wellness and harmony between their employees' work and personal lives, by developing a holistic strategy focused on a healthy work environment.
When advancing their careers in highly competitive sectors such as IT, professionals look for companies that prioritise mental health – the ones that foster a culture of proximity, growth, and trust, provide flexible work schedules, and have leaders committed to promoting their employees’ emotional intelligence.
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