U.S. workers are some of the most stressed in the world. This conclusion, established by a Gallup poll, is also joined by a finding that most young workers now expect their workplace to provide mental wellbeing tools. A good employer is one that acts in a manner that is sustainable in regards to mental health, and provides the basis on which employees can flourish. By looking to industry leaders, business owners already have at their hands a wealth of information through which to sculpt their approach.
Harnessing the mind-body connection
Stress is not something that has impacts solely on mental health. To the contrary, stress when out of control can cause physical effects including fatigue, chronic pain, and heart problems. Properly managing workplace stress, conversely, can help to enhance feelings of relaxation and create better work outcomes. In a review of workplace wellness programs, the Harvard Business Review noted a 57% improvement rate in employees who joined physical fitness programs. Quality is important. Employers should invest in high-quality and effective programs rather than piecemeal equivalents. Poor wellness programs are likely to reflect poorly on the company, and put workers off, as well as damaging reputation.
Reaching into private life
This leans somewhat into private life, and that can be a good thing. Oftentimes, work becomes the number one priority, and everything else in life falls by the wayside. A review of employer wellness programs conducted by Forbes highlights how looking to prioritize worker’s private life priorities can have a major benefit. In one case study, an employee was helped through a combination of medical, physical and psychological intervention to turn his own personal health around - with the assistance of the business.
Opening for a chat
Even if workplace-led wellness programs aren’t favored, simply providing the resourcing and time for employees to take time for their own mental health can have a beneficial impact. According to McKinsey analysis, one of the biggest drivers of workplace stress are mental health conditions. Unfortunately, most workers feel they have neither the time nor money to take direct action in their remediation. Offering benefits packages to target this is effective.
Happy and healthy employees are productive. Rather than seeing people as a resource to burnout, employers should seek to nurture and provide care. Through workplace wellbeing and fitness programs, they have a golden opportunity to do just that.