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Tag Archives for " healthy workplace "

Sep 22

Proven Psychological Strategies that Corporations Should Use to Maximize Peak Performance Among Employees!

By Dr. Jack Singer | Blog , Workplace Wellness

I have written extensively about how more and more companies are recognizing that putting health and wellness programs on board ultimately helps their bottom line by maximizing peak performance in employees.  Do you wonder why such programs are directly related to profits?

Nearly One Million Employees Miss Work Each Day Because of Overwhelming Stress

Lost hours due to absenteeism, reduced productivity, turnover, medical, legal, and insurance costs have been estimated to cost $300 billion per year, or $7500 per worker.

A ton of research has now proven definitively that stress is linked to six leading causes of death, including:

  • heart disease
  • cancer
  • suicide

According to the American Institute of Health & Productivity Management, which phrased the term, “Presenteeism,”

There is also a major cost each year due to employees who are at work but not working up to their potential, because of the stressors they encounter.

In our 24/7 global society, stressors abound, both on and off the job. I-phones, instant messaging, and e-mail all are designed to make life more convenient and easier, but they effectively leash us to work and other obligations.  We have become a society of people with OCD as it pertains to looking for information and instant feedback.  This adds even more stress as we constantly fight to keep up with our competition.

Add to this family demands, our pervasive fear of terror striking close to home, and worrying about the future of our Country, constant stress surrounds us.

[Tweet “Learn how to maximize #employee performance by creating a #healthy #workplace.”]

The Emotional Well-Being of Employees has Been Shown to Positively Impact Performance, Absenteeism, Lower Health Insurance Claims, and Enhance Quality Control

Where the workplace can really help is to focus on programs that enhance the well-being of their employees.  Here you have a captive audience, where their company can show a genuine interest in enhancing their emotional well-being.

The American Psychological Association launched their annual Psychologically Healthy Workplace award several years ago in order to give corporations an incentive to develop programs that will help workers to thrive emotionally.  Examples of programs that enhance the psychological health of employees in the workplace are:

  • offering growth and development opportunities
  • innovative employee recognition programs
  • encouraging work-life balance opportunities
  • participative decision-making opportunities
  • enhanced communications and respect between managers and workers
  • offering confidential counseling to employees from well-trained mental health professionals

Companies whose employees achieve peak performance understand that the emotional well-being of their employees is the key to such performance.

To learn more about how to develop a psychologically healthy workplace for your employees, contact me for more information.

Jul 21

Smart Communication Tips for Creating a Healthy Workplace

By Dr. Jack Singer | Blog , Workplace Wellness

In previous articles, I mentioned the ongoing research cited by the American Psychological Association’s (APA) Center for Organizational Excellence in embracing the principles of a “Psychologically Healthy Workplace.”  This is another piece of the Workplace Excellence puzzle—the role of smart communication in the design and implementation of healthy workplace practices.

Smart Communication in the Workplace

Bottom-up Communication

Management cannot initiate new workplace programs or initiatives without understanding employee needs, perceptions and concerns.

When a company invites me to help them develop a new workplace program, the first step is opening a series of programs where employees are encouraged to communicate.

Anonymity is often necessary in order for employees to feel safe in objectively relating their needs, perceptions and concerns.

Examples of Bottom-Up Communication Strategies:

  1. Employee surveys
  2. Suggestion boxes
  3. Individual or team meetings with managers
  4. Maintaining a participative, open, two-way communication culture

The information obtained by communicating with employees must be given genuine consideration by management.  Employees need to believe that the company is truly interested in their perceptions, concerns, and suggestions for improvement, rather than simply soliciting feedback from employees in order to make them feel important.  This includes not only assessing employee needs but directly involving them in the development and implementation of workplace practices that address those needs.

Top-Down Communication 

How management communicates with employees is critical to the successful implementation of new workplace practices.  Not only do employees need a basic awareness of the availability of new programs, but they need to know clearly how to gain access to them, along with strong messages that management encourages and supports these new initiatives.

Examples of Top-Down Communication Strategies:

  1. Newsletter, memos, etc. that explain the goals of Management
  2. Using multiple channels (e.g., print, electronic, and video, orientation and training sessions, staff and team meetings, etc.)
  3. Leading by example, where all levels of management regularly participate in the same psychologically healthy workplace activities with the employees

Nothing encourages employees more than knowing and believing that top management embraces the same workplace activities they are promoting for their employees.

Smart communication is an important part of building a psychologically healthy workplace. On that topic, the honorable Alexis M. Herman, former U.S. Secretary of Labor, said it best:

“This is not pie in the sky: this is about the bottom line. Building psychologically healthy workplaces isn’t just the right thing to do.  It’s also the smart thing to do.”

Apr 07

The Power of a Psychologically Healthy Workplace

By Dr. Jack Singer | Blog , Featured , Work-Life Balance , Workplace Wellness

For many years now, the American Psychological Association’s (APA) Center for Organizational Excellence has recognized companies across the U.S. that embody the principals of a “Psychologically Healthy Workplace.” For years, I’ve been involved in cutting-edge research on the specific ingredients that make up such workplaces.  All organizations should strive to embrace these characteristics, not simply because they are psychologically healthy for the employees, but because with healthy employees, absenteeism is less, morale is higher, and the quality of products is consistently higher.

Characteristics of a Psychologically Healthy Workplace

Employee Involvement

When employees participate in decision-making, including encouraging and considering their suggestions, they embrace those decisions and it foster’s creativity.

Work-life Balance

Helping employees to handle the challenges outside of work, such as the responsibilities of single parenting, takes much pressure off of them. Flexible working hours, for example, is one ingredient of the work-life balance equation for employees.

Personal and Professional Growth and Development

What does the company offer employees to increase their competencies? Cross-training opportunities for employees to rise within the company also keeps employees from looking elsewhere.

[Tweet “5 Characteristics of a #Psychologically Healthy #Workplace – Employee #Health”]

Employee Recognition

Getting a raise is a form of recognition, but there are many other types of recognition, from company-wide awards ceremonies to fancy trips for top producers. The bottom line is that everyone loves recognition for his or her efforts and loyalty.

Health and Safety

Providing health and wellness workshops directed at educating employees about healthy lifestyles and preventing potential health problems is a must, not simply for the employees and their families, but for the overall health of the organization. For example, when companies bring me in to provide wellness workshops, my goal is to teach employees how to develop permanent resiliency skills, so that they never get overwhelmed by the stressors inherent in their jobs.

Examples of Comments from Employees About Why They Love Their Jobs

The APA surveys employees to determine what aspects of their jobs they love and they post them in their Highlights from the Good Company Blog. Here are some examples:

“Management listens to our concerns. There are regular Q&A’s where we can submit anonymous, public questions.”

 

“I love my job because I get to work from home every day, with flexible hours.”

 

“My co-workers are fun to work with.”

Having fun in the workplace is a major motivator, yet is missing in most work settings. Think strategically how you can improve this within your company and you’ll see a significant improvement in employees morale and overall dedication.


Ready to start reducing stress in your life so you can Develop the Mindset of a Champion? Download my FREE 5 Step Mental Toughness Guide HERE!