Well-being programmes should consider the following five factors that will influence the health and well-being of the individual:
In this article we aim to provide an insight in to what organisations can do to develop a beneficial well-being programme that promotes physical and mental health and positively improves employee engagement.

Connect

Most employers recognise the importance of employee engagement and the business benefits this brings.  Whilst employers recognise the collective benefits to the organisation, well-being programmes should also focus on how they will improve the well-being of the individual.

Therefore a carefully designed well-being programme should reflect business needs, consider business challenges and offer choice to individuals.

A well organised well-being programme can positively impact business; Staff who are happy and healthy will be engaged and want to work for the organisation thus absence (including sickness absence) will be reduced.

Be Active

Modern life can mean that we’re a lot less active. With so many opportunities to watch TV or play computer games, and with so much convenience and fast food available, we don’t move about as much, or eat as well as we should.

So looking after ourselves means we should exercise more and eat more carefully?

This is quite a complex question because being active means more than just looking after our physical well-being. We should also consider our mental well-being as part of being active.

Exercise should be fun and achievable. It should be designed to stretch us but not be stressful. It should also consider those who may find the first step into exercise a real challenge.

With any well-being programme we need to think about what motivates people and what can be achieved realistically. Other considerations will be cost, time and resources. Some consideration may need to be given to shift workers or those working remotely. So the programme you choose needs to be researched to make sure it fits your organisations needs and helps people Connect.

Take Notice

Do you think your employees stop and take notice of their colleagues, or appreciate the facilities or opportunities your company provides for them.  Or, do you they race through the day just focusing on their task and not noticing anything that is going on around them?

Do all your employees take a break or their lunch break? Do they leave the office during the day or do they stay indoors.

Taking notice is about keeping ourselves mentally prepared and fresh. It’s about taking time to reflect, learn, taking some time to appreciate what is going on around us and most importantly taking time to enjoy those things we appreciate and love doing.

Most of your employees will be working for more than 40 years. When considering your well-being programme you need to make sure that your employees are prepared for that life-time journey.

Keep Learning

In our lives we are bombarded with messages about keeping physically fit.

Research shows that 1 in 6 of us suffers with some form mental illness.  Specialists often comment that this figure is much higher and many of us struggle with the pressures of everyday life.

So what can you do?

As employers you should take some time out to find out more about your employee’s issues. You should then give our employees strategies to get or keep ‘mentally fit’ using specialist advice.

There are many organisations who work to promote mental health awareness.  Some, like Mental Health First Aid England provide First Aid training to help people identify the symptoms in others so they in turn can offer help and make sure they get the appropriate advice.

Mental illness is a ‘hidden’ illness and is often regarded with scepticism within the workplace.

As employers we should take more effort to help managers and staff understand what mental is and how it can affect people.  We should also encourage our people to learn how they can exercise their mind to keep mentally fit.

Give

Giving is about creating happiness, doing something for someone else.

Volunteering for something your employees are passionate about or excel in or will benefit both them and the people around them.  They could become a mentor, work for a charity or raise money for a good cause whilst doing something they enjoy.

You could get together a group of like-minded employees who share an interest to help them get away from the everyday pressures of life. Seeing yourself, and your happiness, linked to the wider community can be incredibly rewarding and creates connections with the people around you.

For organisations, your well-being programme can create opportunities within your community and with your employee engagement.

Well-being is a soft approach to ensuring the resilience of your employees by caring for them as a whole person and group.

If you would like more information on developing your organisation’s well-being programme call the Cardinus Consultancy team on 020 7469 0200 or email info@cardinus.com.

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