6 best strategies to boost employee well-being in the hybrid workspace
Updated: Sep 14
Many researchers state that teams are most likely to feel their organization cares about their well-being, achieve profitability and productivity, higher customer engagement, lower turnover, and fewer safety incidents. And yet, according to the State of the Global Workplace report, worry, anger, and sadness did not return to pre-pandemic levels, and stress continued to climb to a new high - 44% of employees said they experienced stress.
People now report more stress, sadness, physical pain, worry, and anger than ever. And leaders often focus on money and jobs, but they don't focus on the quality of employment or the quality of employee relationships. But daily emotions play a significant role in overall employee well-being. So how to understand the relationship between them? How do comprehensive life evaluations improve as negative emotions remain high?
Of all the lessons learned in the last two years, this one should be most important: Employee well-being is mandatory to organizational health. Organizations can't function effectively or adapt, compete and win with struggling and suffering workers. Employee well-being is an opportunity and a risk that leaders can't afford to ignore. If leaders neglect their employees' well-being, they will likely be blindsided by top performer burnout and high quit rates. So what can you do as a leader?
Think beyond wellness
Most large organizations have physical wellness programs. But those programs don't always consider mental health and social relationships important influencers of physical health. Also, physical wellness fails to capture the broader dimensions of overall well-being: social, financial, career, and community well-being.
Companies are searching for ways to provide positive support for overall well-being, from providing psychological and therapist support to organizing courses about resilience, financial literacy, and many others. That's an area where all companies can grow.
Put well-being on your data dashboard
Well-being can be correlated with performance outcomes and measured in a scientifically valid way, and it can be. When companies are actively dealing with programs to improve and maintain their employees' well-being, they can proactively identify potential hot spots, discover best practices and validate that well-being initiatives are making a difference.
Maintain a flexible workforce
Flexibility can also have drawbacks. Because of the "always-on" access to work that a hybrid workplace provides, some employees emphasize the need for work-life balance and higher levels of exhaustion due to a lack of control over their schedules.
When done right and with a high level of trust, flexibility enables employees the freedom to work that suits their needs and lifestyle. The key is to keep communication open and transparent and to stimulate the autonomy of self-organized teams and individuals. Ensuring your organization has regular surveys, and check-ins to determine what employees are currently thinking will enable you to develop guidelines that work for your workforce.
Make employee care a mandatory part of your company culture
At the start of the pandemic, employee engagement in the U.S. rose, and employers decided to listen, communicate, and offer support and flexibility to workers. Ever since, the percentage of employees who feel their employer cares about their well-being has plummeted. The consequences exceed the absence of warm feelings, including lower engagement, higher burnout, and more employees looking for new job opportunities elsewhere. Again, the key to trust and confidence is transparent communication and validation of words and promises.
Set an example for your team
By embracing the flexible work landscape, some employees might spend more time staring at a computer screen or seated at their desks than ever. Despite more physical freedom working outside the office, many employees still spend most of their workday seated.
A recent study found that those who embrace uninhibited or free movement can improve the flow of ideas. You might find that taking a walk, standing, or moving locations during the workday can benefit the creative process. Leaders can quickly adopt this behavior to normalize frequently carrying throughout the day.
Provide the benefits employees actually want
Employers are trying hard to retain and attract talent, especially as the employees seek jobs that offer improved benefits, and Great Resignation puts turnover at an all-time high. Leaders who want to remain competitive in today's market should survey their employees on the voluntary benefits they're interested in and which benefits would help them improve their well-being.
In addition to benefits, another way to grow and maintain a positive company culture is providing employees with perks that let them know they're supported from the top down. But most important, asking employees what they need and how they feel as individuals and proving that they are being heard is the key to success.
Ensure taking the time to understand what your employees need and find ways to support their success is foundational to creating a vibrant team and building a strong organization. The real fix is better leaders in the hybrid workspace. Managers need to be better coaches, listeners, and collaborators. Great managers help colleagues learn and grow, recognize them for doing great work, and make them genuinely feel cared about. In environments like this, workers thrive.
It's not easy keeping employees connected in a hybrid world, and it's even harder to lead a company with dispersed teams and individuals. CULTURATE is an all-in-one platform for establishing and promoting the most necessary elements of culture!
Culturate helps companies, managers, employees, and teams achieve higher engagement, more interaction, and strong connectivity among your team members worldwide, regardless of their physical location.
Designed for innovative HR departments, managers, and leadership teams that are employee-centered and seek to foster a positive and friendly workplace – wherever the work location. Sign up for a free demo here.
4. Gallup – State of the global workplace: 2022 Report