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Creating a Happy and Healthy Workforce in 2015

Listen up employers! Employee burnout is a reality and it’s going to destroy your organisation’s workforce if you don’t sit up and take notice. We live in a world where organisations have downsized. The impact of the economic downturn just a few years ago means that companies are producing greater output with fewer employees. The lines between personal life and work life are totally blurred in a world where employees are now expected to be on call on a 24/7 basis.

My fellow employers if you want to keep good people in your organisation, you’re going to have to make a change. It’s 8pm so stop emailing your PA on her smart phone as she tucks her kids into bed. Your accounts manager on maternity leave does not want to hear about the projects that await her as she makes her way out of the labour ward. And your HR employee who is attending his grandmother’s funeral is in no state to quickly provide you with a report this afternoon.

While employers and managers may be patting themselves on the back for achieving so much more with fewer resources they’ve failed to notice the slow burning impact of employee resentment. They’ve not yet made the connection between higher absenteeism rates and unreasonable expectations on employees. They’ve not yet figured out why the employee who was called in to the office to help finish the project on Saturday and Sunday, is not oozing enthusiasm at the 7am meeting on Monday. After all, aren’t these employers providing an income to people who should just be grateful that they have a job to go to everyday in the first place, right?

Wrong! Employees want to feel included and valued but also respected. There needs to be clear boundaries and it’s up to the employer to maintain this. The key word here is balance. As a successful employer you may have mastered that art of balance, and are already aware of the benefits it can provide for you in your working and personal life.

So taking the lessons you’ve learned, it’s time to help apply these lessons in your organisation. Why? Because happy and healthy employees, are more productive employees, and productive employees are the backbone of your organisation.

When employees feel like they have the freedom to balance their personal needs with work life, they automatically become more enthusiastic and productive at work. When they feel that there is more to life than the daily grind, they feel a sense of satisfaction purpose and achievement. Most importantly, an employee who can sense that their employer genuinely cares for their well-being will literally go out of their way to impress you with their performance.

Here are the top 7 secrets for Happy and Healthy Employees for 2015:

  1. Reduce the pressure:

A toxic environment that is highly competitive will force employees to compete against each other to gain favour. The result is trying to do too much too quickly and often these tasks are not completed accurately or adequately. More emphasis needs to be placed on completing work thoroughly and on praising employees for the unique strengths they bring to the table.

  1. Physical Wellness:

Have you noticed that some of your employees are gaining weight, or that they have increased their caffeine and nicotine intake? The reason is stress. Implement a wellness programme that creates awareness for employees about their health and lifestyle habits. Food and stimulants simply do not help to enhance performance. They create sluggish or highly-strung individuals.

  1. Physical Activity:

The vast majority of employees sit in traffic for at least two hours per day and spend another six hours per day at their desks. When asked about a fitness regime, most will laugh and ask you where you suggest they get the time. Why not introduce the option to engage in physical exercise before the work day begins?  A simple gym at the office or an office running or walking club, will not only do wonders for employee health, but create better relationships among your employees as well.

  1. Eating Habits:

Fast foods and take-aways do little to help performance and brain functioning on top of being a drain on finances and physical health. Through the employee wellness programme, talk to employees about healthy meal options and meal planning.

  1. Emotional Balance:

When people feel like life is a case of surviving and not thriving, they become demotivated and unhappy. Talk to employees about the power of mediation, the benefits of creating a gratitude list. Practicing the habit of making the daily choice to be happy, will help employees to deal with hardships as they do inevitably arise.

  1. Work/Life Balance:

It’s sad that in a world where we spend 70% percent of our time at work, most employees will say that the highlight of their day is home time. Employees that feel challenged and empowered and that they are making a real contribution to the organisation have a greater sense of purpose. They are more motivated and driven to help achieve your company objectives.

  1. Controlling moods and feelings:

Work stress should not go home just as employees should not let their personal worries impact on their work performance. The ability to maintain clear boundaries between these two areas will have an overwhelmingly positive impact, not just on your employees but on your company as a whole.


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