Wellbeing: Symptomatic treatment is simply too late

Wellbeing: Symptomatic treatment is simply too late

Table tennis, yoga classes and nap times may go some way towards showing how interested a company is in the wellbeing of their employees, but, in a re

Table tennis, yoga classes and nap times may go some way towards showing how interested a company is in the wellbeing of their employees, but, in a recent article, Notion, global experts in behaviour change and coaching ask: Do these sorts of initiatives really have any sustainable impact on the wellbeing of people at work or are they just sticking plasters, which fall off after a bit of wear and tear?

Symptomatic treatment is simply too late

Notion’s Director of Coaching, Laura Ashley-Timms suggests that even though the ‘wellbeing at work’ sector is positioned to provide the symptomatic treatment of issues that affect how healthy and happy people are at work, this ‘after-care’ service is simply too late. “Problems will resurface if wellbeing solutions are superficial. If wellbeing initiatives are introduced before addressing the root cause of problems there is a high risk that they will be perceived as frivolous and superficial. Moreover, once the novelty wears off, the cracks will begin to show again, and any unresolved issues will continue to cause problems for both the employee and the organisation in terms of employee engagement, performance and productivity.”

Maybe the answer is in reform rather than recovery

According to Laura, there are no short cuts, “Organisations that want to successfully create healthier and happier workplaces for their employees need to take a long, hard look at the culture of their organisations and ask: What is happening in our workplace that might be undermining wellbeing at a fundamental level?”

A command and control leadership style is counterproductive

“Despite pressures to modernise, managers still tend to fall back on a command and control style of leadership, especially in times of adversity. They spend much more of their time in ‘tell mode’ and spend very little of their time listening. This can be highly counterproductive when dealing with employees who are struggling with overwhelm, anxiety, stress and even burnout which can lead to much bigger problems further down the line.”

With the right skills and behaviours, managers can buoy good health and happiness

“Temporary solutions just won’t work. Change needs to occur on a much deeper level, because, in most cases, managers will have to set aside long-held mental models of what it means to be a manager and undergo a ‘rewiring’ in order to learn how to interact differently with the people around them,” says Laura.

When managers adopt Notion’s ‘Enquiry-Led Approach’ (E.L.A®) they are more likely to understand what employees need

Notion help managers to consistently integrate an E.L.A® into their leadership style, by spending more time asking powerful questions and listening attentively. They say that through E.L.A® managers create opportunities to get closer to the real issues faced by people in their teams enabling them to establish a more authentic understanding of what needs to be done to improve the situation. This might include making better decisions, working more innovatively, reorganising, building new relationships and working smarter rather than harder. Laura concludes, “This more advanced level of communication can support changes in both manager and employee behaviour and has a much deeper impact on the employee experience. Once these solid foundations are in place there’s nothing stopping you from having some fun with the wellbeing initiatives!”

Notion is a global expert in behaviour change and coaching. If you would like to learn more about how to create a happier and healthier culture that enables wellbeing to thrive, call Notion on +44 (0)1926 889 885 for an informal chat or arrange a free consultation by visiting https://www.businesscoaching.co.uk/contact