New research shows what employees really need for wellbeing
Posted on 11th December 2023 at 09:32
New research by the London School of Economics has shown the types of workplace wellbeing initiatives that employees really value - and the role that employers and employees have.
What do employees value most?
According to the research, if HR managers and business owners want to make a difference to how their employees feel at work, they should create a workplace that encourages:
Sufficient work-life balance
Autonomonous working conditions
The researchers, led by behavioural scientist Dr Jasmine Virhia and co-author Dr Grace Lordan, interviewed 100 people across banking, finance and professional services in the UK and in their research encountered examples of where employers' actions or lack of actions had led to a culture of 'ill-being'
Ill-being is defined as an unhealthy, unhappy to unpreporous condition - and in practice the researchers heard about bullying left unchallenged, favouritism, burnout and lack of career progression. These, they showed, had a greater impact on 'ill-being' than workplace wellbeing initiates had on improving culture.
The researchers created the 'Beyond Workplace Wellbeing' framework.
At its core is a reframing of employers' responsibilities and a call to move from a paternalistic stance to returning the ownership of a person's happiness to the person themselves - focussing on minimising 'ill-being' through creating an environment that promotes people's ability to thrive. And then leaving employees themselves to attend to their own happiness in the ways that they would want to.
We have been looking at and learning from the framework, which sets out guidance on how not to adversely impact psychological and physical health.
It also sets out what is within the employer's area of responsibility (creating the environment) and the employee's area of respinsibility (personal wellbeing). It emphasises the importance of addressing ill-being and psychological safety in the workplace, promoting employee autonomy in task management and work hours, and highlights the significance of psychological safety in the workplace and its impact on employee wellbeing.
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