In preparation for Stress Awareness Week, we teamed up with the Stress Management Society to run a survey, quizzing office workers nationwide on their stress and wellbeing in the workplace. We got some intriguing results and highlighted some less than ideal outcomes but based on these, we have come up with what we believe to be the key to creating a healthy and productive workforce.
Assessing and reforming the office environment is clearly an essential first initiative for businesses that want to maintain a healthy, productive workforce. Based on our and The Stress Management Society’s expertise, we have created four key initiatives for businesses to help reduce stress in the workplace and improve employees’ mental wellbeing. Below is our top line summary, but over the coming days we will release a special feature focus for further reading.
Employers should respond to workers’ calls for facilities that encourage exercise (50%) by assessing whether the workplace can be adapted to accommodate them. A workplace assessment can identify underutilised spaces which could be transformed into a meditation room or shower and changing facilities. Click here for our feature blog on encouraging exercise at work.
Taking a few minutes to meditate every day with the goal of becoming more mindful, or focused on the present, is a great way to relieve stress. Yet over half of employees (54%) say their employers do not support mindfulness or meditation. Businesses should ensure meditation and other relaxation techniques are encouraged and their workplace incorporates relaxation zones and quiet areas. Bringing nature in to the office through biophilic design, such as plants, daylight and natural materials, should also be considered.
A third (37%) of workers cite ‘poor, slow or out-of-date technology’ as a leading cause of workplace stress. Employers should invest in the technology that supports employees being able to work effectively, efficiently and freely in the workplace. A laptop and good WiFi is essential in helping ensure everyone is mobile and can choose where where around the office.
With 95% of workers stating their physical work environment is important for their wellbeing and mental health, businesses must understand what is and isn’t working for employees in the office environment. Workplace Consultancy and Change Management will help businesses understand money is invested wisely in the things employees and the business really need to live a happy and productive life in the office. Engage your greatest asset – your people.
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