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Empower your people

I recently wrote a blog for the Directory of Social Change that discussed the responsibility that organisations have in creating the working world of the future. In the blog I mention the role that Henry Ford played over 90 years ago when he introduced the 40-hour week, creating the Saturday-Sunday weekend. I also highlight the importance of flexible working and the role it can play going forward.

I want to expand on the message in that blog by taking the topic wider than just flexible working and talking about it as the empowerment of people instead. There is an opportunity to build the working world around the empowerment of individuals; moving certain responsibility from managers to individuals in order to drive organisational performance.

That may sound utopian, but why shouldn’t it? There is no need to go back to normal after COVID-19 when we can go back to better. The challenge to organisations is to find the capacity to meet the demands that come with supporting employees during this period of change. Right now, there is an opportunity for organisations to empower their employees through a wellbeing-focused strategy and wellbeing-focused management.

Wellbeing-focused organisations reduce stress and create a healthy working culture where both individuals and the organisation thrive. Having a clear strategy towards wellbeing is a keystone metric for driving employee engagement and organisational performance.

Wellbeing And Work

Wellbeing may ultimately be the responsibility of the individual, but the role that organisations can play to support that development is profound. When organisations invest in their managers and help them to support and supervise in an ethical and conscientious manner it becomes possible for entire organisations to become empowered.

Management and leadership create the framework for wellbeing to grow within an organisation. It is easy to make big extravagant gestures to our teams that boost morale and commitment over a short-term. But, real transformative change can only occur when the small gestures are recognised too.

Wellbeing-focused leaders challenge their teams to recognise their own values and feelings; helping align those with overall business goals. They support people to work to the best of their own ability acting to remove any interference that may be a barrier towards performance.

Although sometimes hierarchical in structure, wellbeing-focused organisations understand the need for communication at all levels and employ and train managers and leaders to support that model.

What primary interventions do you provide to support the wellbeing of your staff?

How do I support my staff now?

The quantification of wellbeing has been a challenge for all practitioners both inside and outside the workplace. Each and every single organisation is unique as they are made up of a collection of individual people with their own experiences. This means the steps your organisation takes to becoming wellbeing-focused will be unique to you.

Your responsibility is to try and provide your people with a diverse range of primary and secondary wellbeing interventions. However, keep in mind that secondary interventions, such as training mental health first aiders or providing employee perks, are only effective when partnered with primary interventions, such as strategic HR support or management & leadership training.

What primary and secondary interventions do you provide to support the wellbeing of your staff?

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