27 April 2023
How to Build a Stronger, Healthier Workplace: The Power of Wellbeing Champions
Think about it: are your people truly happy and fulfilled at work? We spend the majority of our lives in the workplace, yet so many of us struggle with work-related stress, burnout, and a lack of work-life balance.
How do we turn this around? How do we create a culture of wellbeing that not only benefits your employees, but also your bottom line? Enter Wellbeing Champions.
Wellbeing Champions are advocates for employee wellbeing. They listen carefully to what is going on in the workplace, and they work together to identify and implement wellbeing initiatives to create a supportive culture of wellbeing. These dedicated individuals are the lifeblood of any successful wellbeing initiative, and the benefits they bring are many.
Wellbeing Champions create a sense of community.
Wellbeing Champions create a sense of community and belonging that’s essential for wellbeing. It’s like being part of a winning sports team – everyone feels like they belong and they’re all working towards a common goal. That’s the power of a strong, supportive workplace culture.
Wellbeing Champions ensure that your wellbeing initiatives are employee-led.
According to research conducted by the CIPD (2017) giving employees an effective voice is a fundamental element of treating them as legitimate stakeholders in the employment relationship. By taking this employee-led approach your initiatives are more likely to be effective and relevant to your staff. When employees are involved in designing and implementing wellbeing programs, they feel a sense of ownership and investment in the outcomes. That translates to greater engagement and commitment to success.
Wellbeing Champions are passionate ambassadors for your brand.
Wellbeing Champions are a dedicated group of people who care about creating a supportive culture of wellbeing for your organisation. When you have a strong team of Wellbeing Champions, they spread the word far and wide, both within and outside the company. That’s priceless PR that money can’t buy.
Wellbeing Champions take a proactive approach to supporting employee wellbeing.
Wellbeing Champions are always looking for new ways to encourage healthy habits and promote wellness. Whether it’s organising a lunchtime walking group or launching a targeted health campaign, Wellbeing Champions are on the front lines of the fight for employee wellness.
Wellbeing Champions break the mental health taboo.
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, Wellbeing Champions break the mental health taboo. Globally, an estimated 12 billion working days are lost every year to depression and anxiety at a cost of US$ 1 trillion per year in lost productivity (World Health Organisation 2022). Mental health issues are a major cause of lost productivity and absenteeism in the workplace, but many employees are hesitant to speak up about their struggles.
Wellbeing Champions are trained to recognise the signs of mental health issues and provide support and guidance to employees who need it. They’re a safe, confidential point of contact for anyone who’s struggling.
So, the benefits are clear. The next question is:
How can you make sure your Wellbeing Champion Programme is a success?
There are 3 key points to consider:
- Ensure that your Wellbeing Champions are selected carefully. You are looking for people who are passionate about promoting wellbeing in your organisation.
- Provide expert-led training and ongoing support, to ensure that they have the knowledge and skills they need to implement your wellbeing strategy effectively.
- Make sure that your Wellbeing Champion Programme is integrated into your wider HR and business strategy, and that it is given the resources and support it needs to thrive
What can you do to implement a Wellbeing Champion programme?
Start by identifying a group of passionate and committed individuals who are willing to take on the role of Wellbeing Champions. Then, work with an experienced wellbeing consultancy to develop a tailored Wellbeing Champion training that meets the unique needs of your organisation. Finally, provide ongoing support and guidance to your Wellbeing Champions, and monitor the success of your wellbeing initiatives to ensure they are making a real impact.
Wellbeing Champions are the secret sauce that can take your organisation’s wellbeing to the next level.
By investing in a Wellbeing Champion Programme you are promoting employee wellbeing and creating a healthier and happier workplace. The result is greater productivity, reduced absenteeism, and a culture of engagement and positivity. So why not consider implementing a Wellbeing Champion Programme in your organisation today?
About the author
Sandra Ordel is a leading business psychologist who specialises in creating cultures of wellbeing where people thrive and organisations excel.