Tuesday 10 September 2019, London

A company’s biggest asset is its people, many of which spend most of their adult life at work, so its vital employers invest in them, and part of that investment is taking their health and happiness seriously.

Staff wellbeing is a strategic business priority, and the move to creating a healthy and high performance team often results in lower levels of absence in existing employees and are more attractive to candidates when recruiting. The 2018 CIPD report on Health and Wellbeing at Work, identified that businesses that invest in staff wellbeing, experience an increase of up to 44% better employee morale and engagement.

Liam Terry from Pinsent Masons commented that the biggest first step in improving wellbeing at work is to create an environment that people can talk and be open about their mental wellbeing.

Stress and challenge is to be expected, both in and out of work. However problems can arise when someone is experiencing unnecessary stress. When this happens, it is important to not only deal with the problem, but also look to and address the cause/s. Commitment at board level is important, when addressing the underlying cause of unnecessary stress and strain in the workplace.

According to Sarah Thum-Bonanno from the Wellbeing Project, it is helpful to use the five pillars model when looking at personal resilience. This approach can help you understand your levels of resilience, and any gaps you can address to support you in times of stress and pressure.

  1. Energy – how are you physically sustaining and allowing your body to renew to ensure you have the capacity to keep going through challenging times.
  2. Future Focus – do you have a sense of direction and purpose to help you move forwards without getting stuck or feeling held back?
  3. Inner Drive – do you have self believe, confidence, motivation and perseverance to help you through stressful times?
  4. Flexible thinking – are you having an open and optimistic mindset, enabling a positive and adaptive response to change and challenges?
  5. Strong relationships – are you building open and trusting relationships, and willing to call on these for help and support if facing a challenge?

Perhaps the two most important questions posed on the night, and something we should ask ourselves is . .

  • If you find yourself in a position of unnecessary stress and strain, what do you need to do to get back to your comfort zone?
  • Can you recognise when these unhealthy periods of unnecessary stress become the norm?

Katie Fenner, Industry Marketing Manager
Grant Thornton