Introduction to Wellbeing – For Managers

When you think of wellbeing you might have images of yoga sessions and fruit on friday. That’s because the term seems to have been hijacked by pink fluffy unicorns. 

The WHO first defined wellbeing in 1948. The same year the NHS was founded. These steps to protect and promote health came in response to the second world war and the trauma that everyone had experienced. The survivors took a most horrific period of history and used it to create a change for the better. Now as we start to emerge from a Global pandemic, there has never been a better timeto revisit what wellbeing is and how it should be central to your organisation. 

That original definition in 1948 was tied to a person’s health.. “… a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being, not merely the absence of disease or infirmity”. We’ve come to understand that wellbeing also includes emotional health, spiritual healthand sexual health. And beyond that it includes personal fulfillment. What do your staff want to achieve? What opportunities do they need? What support do they require? 

Over the pandemic we have seen our work lives shifted beyond our control, which has impacted everyone’s wellbeing. The resulting upheaval has led to many workplace challenges such as poor communication, low morale, falling productivity and Stress in the Workplace. 

This should not be a surprise. More than two-thirds of adults in the UK (69%) report feeling somewhat or very worried about COVID-19 The ONS reports that Depression alone had increased to 20% of U.K. adults in the first quarter of 2021. The good news is that as a manager, you can help. Each of your staff has the potential to become a hero in their own story. If you provide the right opportunities and support then you will become the mastermind behind an army of wellbeing superheroes. 

It’s not about you trying to fix everyone’s problems. It’s about giving your staff the right tools to improve their own situation. 

Your super power to do this is listening. Reach out and discover your staff’s issues, aspirations and ideas and then act on them in a structured framework, developing a working environment which allows your staff to fly. 

It’s not a one-of, it’s not an instant fix. Wellbeing is a cycle of constant adjustment to give vitality, hope and satisfaction to the people you manage. There are many legal advantages to fostering wellbeing, but the biggest advantage is ensuring the success and happiness of everyone in your organisation, including you.