It doesn’t take a genius to work out a healthy, happy workforce leads to a happy, healthy bottom-line. It just makes sound business sense to support the wellbeing of your staff (and as a bonus, it might also leave you feeling warm and fuzzy inside).
Feeling fit and healthy physically and mentally will improve moral, productivity and engagement. It will also decrease short and long term sickness and energise your workforce. You can help improve or nurture wellbeing in a huge variety of ways.
A key part of feeling emotionally and physically well is moving through daily life without injury or pain. Health and Safety execs sometimes get a raw deal with regard to their impact on everyone’s happiness due in part to their often, overly-prescriptive approach to employees. It they can implement schemes and projects, however, to ensure better desk posture, better lifting methods and simply working in safe environments to avoid nasty injuries they are surely guaranteeing happiness; or at least avoiding sadness and isn’t that the same thing? We can leave the psychologists to argue.
The best way to help your H&S team to develop a better rep is simply to alter how they are perceived by employees. Adapting to a: ‘we aren’t here to nag; we are here to help’ approach, led by the whole senior management team will make things infinitely better. More communication and less box ticking will improve their reputation and credibility tenfold and boosting the team will invariably boost the uptake of health and safety methods so it’s a win win.
Depending on the type of industry and workforce you have there are a variety of ways to help. Larger companies can offer local gym subsidies or organise employee sports and exercise events on the premises; smaller businesses, with limited budgets, can support physical health simply by being open to helping members of staff who want to organise group fitness sessions, do that.
Encouraging a team approach to health and fitness essentially encourages a team approach to work but it’s quite important not to be authoritarian about it – some employees will feel emotional unease if suddenly faced with health initiatives they feel they must partake in. Better to signpost people towards health and give them options to get involved themselves.
It’s interesting to note that encouraging your staff to be healthy and look after themselves has a two prong benefit. Obviously, they profit from heeding the information that you are providing, eating the free fruit you offer in the canteen or attending the mental resilience workshop that you have kindly organised, but, and this is the great part, they also benefit psychologically simply from the fact that you are making that effort.
Your obvious interest in keeping them well gives your employees a psychological boost. They feel nurtured and engaged and not just a number in a little rat race. Isn’t that great? We think so and your employees will too.