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Bring your whole self to work!

From Human Resources to Human@Work

Having listened to an incredible episode of Dr. Rangan Chatterjee’s podcast, “How to Win at Life Without Losing Yourself With Dr Pippa Grange” where they explain how fear holds us back in our lives, we couldn’t help but think about how fear holds us back in the workplace. 

Why is this a business relevant topic? Because fear dispels creativity and curiosity and leads to self-doubt and uncertainty – hindering our ability to perform in a productive, successful, and happy manner. And there are tons of research to back this. 

Dr. Pippa Grange, Doctor of Applied Psychology, and author of the book Fear Less: How to Win at Life Without Losing Yourselfexplains that fear is a natural emotion, but one that we need an awareness around to make sure that we are keeping it at the right size. We cannot allow it to take up too much space as it ultimately alters our course of action, our ability to have mental freedom, and be creative in our thinking. And at work, we need to be functioning optimally and feel empowered to act without the inhibitions of fear and its gang of possies – judgement, jealousy, fear of rejection, superiority, perfectionism, and thoughts that our contributions and ideas are not good enough. 

A research study on team performance undertaken by Google discovered that a defining factor in certain teams outperforming others rested solely in an authentic workplace with psychological safety. Psychological safety is a group culture that the Harvard Business School professor Amy Edmondson defines as a ‘‘shared belief held by members of a team that the team is safe for interpersonal risk-taking. A sense of confidence that the team will not embarrass, reject or punish someone for speaking up,’’ Edmondson explains. ‘‘It describes a team climate characterized by interpersonal trust and mutual respect in which people are comfortable being themselves.’’ If this is a topic that you are intrigued by, you can listen to Amy’s TEDx Talk on Building a Psychologically Safe Workplace. 

To share ideas, feedback, offer solutions, brainstorm new approaches and put your hand up to speak out requires vulnerability. However, vulnerability has often been perceived as the last thing to be at work – a weakness – to hide at all costs – but perhaps it is this very thing that has been holding companies back to really achieving their full potential. One cannot foster a shaming and blaming environment where criticism and judgement are feared and expect high performance and wellbeing in return. A company is defined by its people. They are the life, the spirit, the heartbeat of what make your organization, and if we don’t empower them to bring their whole selves to work it will generally have a long-term negative effect on their performance, health and happiness. 

As HR, you need to be fiercely determined to cultivate an environment that allows your employees to be all they are whilst feeling safe and supported. Especially in today’s rapidly changing and unpredictable environment, where HR professionals continue to face the demand of altering approaches and expanding mindsets to match the constantly changing demand on skills. People expect fear is increasing where the constant lure of job loss/being made redundant is a biggy. Would you show yourself if you feel you might be next? 

The nice thing is when you are in this dynamic environment you are in a position where you can shape that environment and move the needle, step by step.  

So, how can you cultivate an environment within your organization that fosters behavior that in the past, we have been taught to suppress (or believed we should suppress)?  

  • This often starts with permission! People need to feel they have permission to bring their whole selves to work. To genuinely share what they think, feel, and need to be well. We subconsciously seek permission in our lives. Once permission is granted, particularly through not only words, but modelled by the leaders around us, it sets us free and in motion to do the same. When the door to real, honest connection has been opened, people follow. 
  • Don’t forget the human side of your business transformation, especially when it comes to all your essential digitalization efforts. People worry digitalization will make them lose their jobs. Would you support such a change and bring your ideas and thoughts to the table? For successful transformation, take the social approach to workplace innovation – engage and involve your people! “Social Innovation addresses social needs by social means. ‘Social’ in the context of workplace innovation refers to non-technical innovations and emphasizes good quality jobs and employee participation”[1]. Include your employees so that there is a sense of meaning, impact, and empowerment. When innovation is led by mentally, emotionally, and physically healthy team members, well-being opportunities cannot afford to be overlooked or disregarded as a “nice to have.”  
  • Welcome imperfection and mistakes as just human! As human beings, your employees are already naturally drawn to the negative. We need 3 positive events to balance on negative. The criticisms, their mistakes, their perceived failures, where they could have done better, or should have known better. They tend to pick up the proverbial stick and give themselves a good beating! So better treat failure and human mistakes as a gift to learn from and improve upon so things get better. Mistakes, they are human after all and wouldn’t live be boring if all would run perfect all the time. When honest engagement happens, it opens the door to real process improvement and idea exchange and humanness, which will that is what drives satisfaction and overall business success – two bi-products well worth it! 
  • Nurture and recruit your Leaders so they demonstrate authenticity, bravery, and show their humanness. Vulnerable, hey? Mental Health issues, I live through them and know how you feel. Scary, yes! But powerful beyond measure and needed? 100%! The possibilities that extend from this game changing approach are endless. Brene Brown has done great work in this space invites leadership to “dare to be brave leaders by leading with wholehearted leadership and by embracing vulnerability and courage cultures into their work culture”. 

As HR, you are the heart of finding the potential in people and processes and help drive organizational performance through human beings. Let’s not lose another second ofinauthentic nonhuman interaction at work.  

 

References:

[1] Pot, Frank/ Dhondt, Steven/ Oeij, Peter (2012): Social innovation of work and employment. In: Franz, Hans-Werner/ Hochgerner, Josef/ Howaldt, Jürgen (Eds.), Challenge Social Innovation. Potential for business, social entrepreneurship, welfare and civil society. Springer: Berlin, pp. 261 – 274.

The simplest definition of energy is “the capacity for doing work,” (Britannica). Our most critical resource is our energy, yet most people neglect to manage their energy effectively. Accustomed to multitasking and opting for longer hours to achieve more in our days, we are adopting survival methods that are neither effective, nor healthy. Tiredness and risk for burnout are a common theme in modern-day life because of us trying to do it all. This approach is not one that is sustainable, and more and more companies that are recognizing this are gaining the competitive edge by making well-being a priority.   

Faced with unprecedented uncertainty and change, especially in this ongoing global pandemic, every individual is being challenged to adapt. And change, by definition, requires a lot of energy from us. So how to spend this energy effectively?  

Energy in 4 dimensional  

Jim Loehr and Tony Schwartz described in their bestselling book the power of full engagement1 a 4-dimensional energy model that consists of:

  • Physical Energy, the overall quantity
  • Emotional Energy, the quality
  • Mental Energy, the focus
  • Spiritual Energy, the direction and force

Placing higher value on one or two of these areas is detrimental to your capability as these dimensions are all interconnected. Failure to take care of even one element directly impacts the others, much like kicking a leg off a stool – balance and function become a huge challenge and you will drop eventually. Think of when you are feeling hangry (hungry and angry) – your ability to mentally focus or be patient with a loved one goes out the window. Or when you have spent the whole day sitting at your computer, completely Zoom fatigued and mentally drained and then collapse on the couch at the end of the day (remember that collapsing each night is not relaxing — something we can often confuse!).

The Effects of Not Managing Energy

Managing your energy, balancing stress, and incorporating necessary recovery time into your daily routine is important. In our own lives and in our training groups we see over and over that when we fail to do this, we struggle to keep up performance, health, and happiness. (We have originally been trained by the institute of Jim Loehr to use this simple but still highly effective model to help people better manage their energy and support others in doing so too). This simple approach combined with introducing sustainable micro-habits has impacted our personal and professional lives tremendously and is something we love to passionately share with others. There is no doubt that there are days where you feel tired and depleted of energy but it should not be every day. When you are physically tired, mentally drained, emotionally down, and you start asking yourself what you are doing it all for, your performance is affected, no matter how much time you allocate to any given task. If you have not eaten and have been sitting all morning, you will find that it is hard to focus or feel perky and motivated. Instead, you most likely feel hungry, grumpy and sluggish, and are at risk of making more mistakes and becoming more distracted and emotional. Having something to eat and taking a walk or standing for a bit will help you to recenter and feel renewed energy for the afternoon.

Organization’s are waking up to the resounding fact that when you focus on sustaining your employee’s energy, everyone will win. If your talent is on the brink of burnout, it renders your Learning & Development, Upskilling Programmes, and Employee Engagement initiatives futile. The high demands will always be there, so it is vital that companies empower their people with knowledge of how to overcome the capacity conundrum – and that inevitably starts with putting yourself and your energy first.

Physical Energy: 

Physical energy is an area where most people have an awareness of what needs to be done to feel energized, but it is still an area where most fall short due to the design of our busy lives where the first ball we drop is often the one where you take care of your physical selves. If you are not getting enough sleep, are not moving, and are not eating well, we all know we will feel sluggish, and this will have a knock-on effect on your emotional mood and ability to concentrate. Managing your physical energy is about moving from knowing what you should do to making your physical self a top priority/radical self-care. Start small:

  • Move more – this can be doing 2 or 3 minutes of movement every hour to give your mind a break and get the blood flowing.
  • Give your body the fuel it wants and needs. Don’t let meeting after meeting result in you missing meals or grabbing what you can when you can.
  • Have a healthy snack at hand by throwing snack carrots, tomatoes, and nuts in your basket at the supermarket. Drink more water, and don’t skip meals. It will leave you hangry and affect your ability to focus.
  • Sit away from your computer when you eat to avoid mindless eating
  • Carry a water bottle around to help drink more regularly and stay hydrated
  • If you are on a call, try and walk around if possible or stand
  • Get a sleep routine going – avoid your phone before bed, try go to sleep around the same time each evening, listen to something relaxing – whatever helps you prepare for a good night’s sleep! And makes bedtime an exciting ritual.

The above activities provide you with recovery time. Whether you are walking to put the kettle on, are going to eat lunch, or are getting some fresh air outside to stretch your legs, these activities provide you with time to recover mentally and emotionally from that last meeting or zoom call and return feeling focused and recharged.

Beautiful women working out in gym

Mental Energy – Mind full or Mindful?   

Our brains allow us to pay attention, be focused, think, and make decisions. And guess what, all of that cost’s energy. Your brain is like a muscle too and after 45 minutes the fuel to operate your brain is depleted and needs to be recharged. We come across a lot of employees that believe their brain can just continue to operate without a break and in today’s world, where information is available to you always through your smartphone and at increasingly exponential rates, our minds are under pressure, and we are easily overwhelmed and suffering information overload. It has become difficult to cut through all the noise and really focus your attention and thoughts. Some small and helpful tips are:

  • Allow your brain to recover by actively doing nothing. Your mind should not process any new information. Let your mind wander, stare out of the window, or walk around the block without the next must-hear podcast in your ears.
  • Don’t try to multitask – it is mentally tiring and leaves room for error. As hard as it is in our current culture of doing everything at once, try to focus on one thing at a time.
  • When you are talking to someone, be present.
  • Actively choose where you want to invest your energy and what you want to focus on.
  • Set boundaries for yourself, and for others! It can be hard, but you can do it!
  • Set out times with no distractions so that you can focus on the task at hand that requires concentration – this leads back to boundaries. You do not need to be available on email and phone 24/7 – switching tasks results in lower productivity and more time being spent.

Emotional Energy:  

It is easy to feel motivated and perform well when you are feeling positive emotions. How you are feeling can result from many factors – constant daily challenges, interruptions, other people and their emotions, feeling hungry, feeling tired, etc. It is difficult to be productive or have a clear mind to deliver good work if your emotions are all over the show. Being able to tap into how you are feeling and why you are feeling that way is an important first step. Your emotions never lie and provide you a good insight in how you are doing – think of them as data. Recognizing your emotions allows you to identify what could be causing them and helps you to be better positioned to choose your reaction or select a recovery behavior.

  • Pause several times a day and ask yourself how you truly feel – energized, relaxed, agitated, or downing?
  • Spend a minute focusing on what you are grateful for.
  • Create a workplace that creates a feeling of safety – show appreciation to colleagues, express thanks, if someone is interrupted take the time to go back to them. Small, thoughtful actions help you to connect.
  • Practice talking about what you are thinking or feeling and be open to vulnerability
  • Spend time thinking about the stories you tell yourself – are they helpful or unhelpful? Your stories impact how you behave so don’t underestimate the silent voice in your head as inconsequential! There is power in your private thoughts!

Spiritual Energy:   

A person who has found a purpose in life can overcome any obstacle in their path. This last dimension is often overlooked as a source of energy, but it is one of the biggest contributing factors to how you feel. “He who has a why to live can bear almost any how2”. If you know why your life is important, and you know that your goal is a positive one, you can suffer through almost any defeat without giving up or quitting. It is valuable to spend time reflecting about who and what matters to you most and what and when are you feeling inspired, motivated, and energized, and when not. And while you may not be able to have your passion be your profession yet, it is important to unpack what elements of your job bring you value and satisfaction and how you can incorporate more of that into your work life. It is also imperative that you view your life with a holistic view of everything that makes you, you, and a life worth living. How you spend your time at home, with family, with friends, with your community, and with yourself needs to align with your core values and what brings you purpose and joy. We are all driven to have meaning in life and those that can tap into that are proven to be more resilient (1).

  • Spend time thinking about your personal values
    What is important to you?
    What do you value?
    What and who brings you joy?
  • Are you connecting with the relationships that matter to you?

So, what are the benefits of managing your energy?

  • You have the ability to be more engaged.
  • Your relationships improve by being present. Feeling more energized and prioritizing self-care allows you to be more connected with those around you and yourself.
  • Your productivity, motivation, and happiness increase!
  • Your health improves and you feel more balanced to incorporate all elements of your life that bring fulfillment.

References:

The power of Full Engagement. Jim Loehr and Tony Schwartz

Man search for meaning – Victor Frankl

From Human Resources to Human@Work

Having listened to an incredible episode of Dr. Rangan Chatterjee’s podcast, “How to Win at Life Without Losing Yourself With Dr Pippa Grange” where they explain how fear holds us back in our lives, we couldn’t help but think about how fear holds us back in the workplace. 

Why is this a business relevant topic? Because fear dispels creativity and curiosity and leads to self-doubt and uncertainty – hindering our ability to perform in a productive, successful, and happy manner. And there are tons of research to back this. 

Dr. Pippa Grange, Doctor of Applied Psychology, and author of the book Fear Less: How to Win at Life Without Losing Yourselfexplains that fear is a natural emotion, but one that we need an awareness around to make sure that we are keeping it at the right size. We cannot allow it to take up too much space as it ultimately alters our course of action, our ability to have mental freedom, and be creative in our thinking. And at work, we need to be functioning optimally and feel empowered to act without the inhibitions of fear and its gang of possies – judgement, jealousy, fear of rejection, superiority, perfectionism, and thoughts that our contributions and ideas are not good enough. 

A research study on team performance undertaken by Google discovered that a defining factor in certain teams outperforming others rested solely in an authentic workplace with psychological safety. Psychological safety is a group culture that the Harvard Business School professor Amy Edmondson defines as a ‘‘shared belief held by members of a team that the team is safe for interpersonal risk-taking. A sense of confidence that the team will not embarrass, reject or punish someone for speaking up,’’ Edmondson explains. ‘‘It describes a team climate characterized by interpersonal trust and mutual respect in which people are comfortable being themselves.’’ If this is a topic that you are intrigued by, you can listen to Amy’s TEDx Talk on Building a Psychologically Safe Workplace. 

To share ideas, feedback, offer solutions, brainstorm new approaches and put your hand up to speak out requires vulnerability. However, vulnerability has often been perceived as the last thing to be at work – a weakness – to hide at all costs – but perhaps it is this very thing that has been holding companies back to really achieving their full potential. One cannot foster a shaming and blaming environment where criticism and judgement are feared and expect high performance and wellbeing in return. A company is defined by its people. They are the life, the spirit, the heartbeat of what make your organization, and if we don’t empower them to bring their whole selves to work it will generally have a long-term negative effect on their performance, health and happiness. 

As HR, you need to be fiercely determined to cultivate an environment that allows your employees to be all they are whilst feeling safe and supported. Especially in today’s rapidly changing and unpredictable environment, where HR professionals continue to face the demand of altering approaches and expanding mindsets to match the constantly changing demand on skills. People expect fear is increasing where the constant lure of job loss/being made redundant is a biggy. Would you show yourself if you feel you might be next? 

The nice thing is when you are in this dynamic environment you are in a position where you can shape that environment and move the needle, step by step.  

So, how can you cultivate an environment within your organization that fosters behavior that in the past, we have been taught to suppress (or believed we should suppress)?  

  • This often starts with permission! People need to feel they have permission to bring their whole selves to work. To genuinely share what they think, feel, and need to be well. We subconsciously seek permission in our lives. Once permission is granted, particularly through not only words, but modelled by the leaders around us, it sets us free and in motion to do the same. When the door to real, honest connection has been opened, people follow. 
  • Don’t forget the human side of your business transformation, especially when it comes to all your essential digitalization efforts. People worry digitalization will make them lose their jobs. Would you support such a change and bring your ideas and thoughts to the table? For successful transformation, take the social approach to workplace innovation – engage and involve your people! “Social Innovation addresses social needs by social means. ‘Social’ in the context of workplace innovation refers to non-technical innovations and emphasizes good quality jobs and employee participation”[1]. Include your employees so that there is a sense of meaning, impact, and empowerment. When innovation is led by mentally, emotionally, and physically healthy team members, well-being opportunities cannot afford to be overlooked or disregarded as a “nice to have.”  
  • Welcome imperfection and mistakes as just human! As human beings, your employees are already naturally drawn to the negative. We need 3 positive events to balance on negative. The criticisms, their mistakes, their perceived failures, where they could have done better, or should have known better. They tend to pick up the proverbial stick and give themselves a good beating! So better treat failure and human mistakes as a gift to learn from and improve upon so things get better. Mistakes, they are human after all and wouldn’t live be boring if all would run perfect all the time. When honest engagement happens, it opens the door to real process improvement and idea exchange and humanness, which will that is what drives satisfaction and overall business success – two bi-products well worth it! 
  • Nurture and recruit your Leaders so they demonstrate authenticity, bravery, and show their humanness. Vulnerable, hey? Mental Health issues, I live through them and know how you feel. Scary, yes! But powerful beyond measure and needed? 100%! The possibilities that extend from this game changing approach are endless. Brene Brown has done great work in this space invites leadership to “dare to be brave leaders by leading with wholehearted leadership and by embracing vulnerability and courage cultures into their work culture”. 

As HR, you are the heart of finding the potential in people and processes and help drive organizational performance through human beings. Let’s not lose another second ofinauthentic nonhuman interaction at work.  

 

Emotional wellbeing

Emotional wellbeing is closely interlinked with mental and social wellbeing. When talking about emotional wellbeing what we mean is that your employees experience positive emotions at work the majority of the time.

Some of the biggest positivity derailers for employees are non-effective and hierarchical work processes, non-effective social work relations and lack of recognition and trust.
Here are key areas you should look at as a company if you want to boost positivity:

  • Simplify the bureaucratic struggle. Shape your organization toward effective work processes.
  • Provide autonomy and equip so they can do their job. Assign them with an outcome (what) instead of the steps and procedures (how).
  • Foster supportive and non-judgmental social relations at work .
  • Make work enjoyable! Provide opportunities to have fun and release the tension, be it a game rooms, social activities… Laughter creates positive emotions; it is also a way to bond while also releasing tension.
  • Welcome emotions at the workplace, both the positive and the more survival-based emotions. Give permission to feel. As humans, have a long history of disregarding our feelings. But hey, we are only human after all!

Social wellbeing

Who are you surrounded by and what is the impact of them on your wellbeing? Humans need to be part of a pack, and in the old days being excluded from your pack meant a big risk to die. We therefore have a deep human need to belong – to feel part of a group of people who accept us for who we are and even better, share our values and sometimes dreams. When we find ourselves in a team or organization that does not want us, or does not accept us for who we are, we live in a constant state of psychological arousal: fears take over, we are anxious, and we can even become depressed [3].

‘I want to be myself at work without being afraid that people will shut me out or shut me down.’

As an organization, here is how you can set the ground for social wellbeing:

  • Take loneliness serious and destigmatize conversations around it. Lots of people experience loneliness and the global pandemic has made loneliness a hot topic in health and wellbeing. Provide opportunities to gather and socialize in informal but meaningful ways. This is tricky with the pandemic, so it will require thinking out of the box.
  • Leadership development is a key element in social wellbeing, select your leaders carefully, and develop and equip them so they can truly let their teams thrive. Include KPIs that monitor team energy and wellbeing next to business impact and results.
  • Define general rules of engagement that include respect, care, and valuing differences and foster relationships from a genuine interest in each other. This also means that people know each other well enough not to push each other’s buttons.
Multicultural group of co-workers

Career wellbeing

Do you still feel you like your job and can develop yourself? Are your talents used and valued?

The more employees can align their job content to their individual aspirations and their personal definition of career success, the more they will be happy, healthy, and productive [4]. Careers today are very dynamic and the contemporary careers playing field is rapidly changing, having a huge impact on many of your employees. This challenges the way companies have historically managed and viewed careers. As skills change rapidly, so do our organizational need for talent, and where we struggle to find the right people on one hand we have employees in jobs that do not match their skills anymore. Career Wellbeing talks about the best fit between the needs of the employer and the wishes of the employee from a long-term perspective. How do you start to move the needle here?

  • Acknowledge that we are in a huge mental paradigm shift in our thinking about careers. Start conversations around this to create a common language and understanding.
  • Stop managing careers, instead start facilitating them. Help your staff understand what they aspire to and how do they define career success. Once they know, get them trained on career skills so they start driving their own careers and are motivated to take ownership of their development.
  • Design jobs that allow job crafting and development. Allow employees to craft their jobs to focus on what drives most energy and where they feel successful or want to develop.
  • Allow individual work arrangements. We all differ, and the “everyone is the same and should be treated the same” belongs to the previous century. Just as health and wellbeing are personal, our career values, or job motivators and energy givers/drainers are as well. Allow for differentiation and build a good rationale for why you do so.

Financial wellbeing

Strongly linked to Career wellbeing is financial wellbeing. Financial wellbeing is about a sense of security and the feeling that you have enough money to meet your needs. It’s about being in control of your day-to-day finances and having the financial freedom to make choices that allow you to enjoy life. And those finances come from the job you have, as job without a pay equals charity.
But this security appeal can have counterproductive effects on “career wellbeing”: lots of people get stuck in jobs that do not motivate them due to the financial security they provide. A good South African saying, “You might be in a bucket of poop, and it’s smelly but at least it is warm”… not daring to move or change has a profound impact on overall wellbeing.

  • A lot of this can be debunked by insight on where money flows and how much is enough. People generally spend what comes in without really knowing where it flows. Insight into real needs opens possibilities. In a landscape of constant change, job insecurity and pension uncertainty supporting your employees with their financials can really boost wellbeing.
Financial growth concept

Purpose and business wellbeing

Last but not least, an important part of wellbeing is linked to purpose and values. There are 2 sides of a mutual coin called success: a personal and a company’s side. Wellbeing here comes down to the alignment on both sides.

For organizations, a big piece here is culture and practice what you preach.

For individuals, they need to feel engaged by the company’s wider mission –Why do we exist and what does it mean to work here?, feel that they belong and can contribute –how and why am I part of this?, and develop awareness about how their personal purpose is aligning with the overall business goals and missions.

So what should you consider here?

  • Firstly, think about how do you bring your employees along on your company’s journey and how do they embody the values and the mission of your company? What behaviors align with your company’s values and purpose and how do you model these within the organization?
  • Practice what you preach and stay aligned. Ask yourself what is rewarded and recognized within your organization and how is that aligned with your mission and your values? How aligned is what you actually do to what you communicate? If you say you care, how do your company’s behaviors model this, and what KPIs monitor it? Greenwashing is becoming less and less acceptable especially to the younger generations and is a sign of a lack of organizational wellbeing.
  • Help your employees find their own personal life mission and support them to become their best selves. Let them make connections between their personal purpose and the organization’s purpose, and where there are misalignments, help your employees process this.
Man with compass in hand

So we covered all the different aspects we consider essential when really moving the needle on workplace wellbeing. Now finally ask yourself the question; even if you have all this in place, who is ultimately responsible for wellbeing? I hope you came to the same conclusion we did; the individual. You can have everything in place and still people can feel crap. Your job is to facilitate your employees to take ownership of their own health and wellbeing and to create an environment that supports that. A big part of this ownership lies in:

  • providing your employees energy management, resilience and vitality programs to kickstart personal purpose, physical, and mental wellbeing.
  • supporting them to craft a career that matches their abilities and aspirations.

Make sure you choose evidence-based programs with studies outcomes. And make sure your leaders will role model the behaviors that support health and wellbeing. Nothing is more demotivating than coming back from a company paid employee wellbeing program wanting to make change and facing a manager that doesn’t allow nor model these behaviors. This highlights the importance of social and business wellbeing once more. So things have come full circle.

References

[1] https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/depression

[2] This includes the direct costs of health care and medicine, of other therapies, and the indirect costs such a loss of productivity. Kelland, K (2018, October 9) Mental health crisis could cost the world $16 trillion by 2030. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-mental-global-idUSKCN1MJ2QN

[3] Harvard Business Review Press ‘ How to be happy at work’

[4] Ans de Vos, Developing Sustainable Careers Across the Lifespan

Need to broaden your wellbeing strategy?

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Employees are human beings that bring their whole selves to work

The research into the connection between employee wellbeing and company performance just keeps on growing and the results all point in the same direction: employee wellbeing has a critical impact on numerous areas of business performance. For example, low wellbeing results in higher levels of absence and presenteeism and has an influence on employee retention [1].

Harvard business review came to the following definition of workplace wellbeing [2]:

“An organized, employer-sponsored program that is designed to support employees (and, sometimes, their families) as they adopt and sustain behaviors that reduce health risks, improve quality of life, enhance personal effectiveness, and benefit the organization’s bottom line” .

I love this one as workplace wellbeing relates to all aspects of (working) life, from the quality and safety of the physical work environment, employees’ overall physical and mental health, to how employees feel about their current job, their work environment, their peers and supervisor and the culture of the organization. As you can see that is a very broad topic and even moves beyond work as employees are human beings that bring their whole selves to work. If things at home are not working well, that will spill over into the work environment and vice versa.
The bottom line question related to Employee Health and Wellbeing is: How do we as an organization shape a work-environment where our employees come to work with energy and motivation to do their jobs AND leave our offices with energy to engage in meaningful non-work related activities, while staying healthy throughout?. If you would like to take this one step further you could set yourself a goal to help employees advance and increase their wellbeing levels becoming better, happier and healthier versions of themselves every day.

From Human Resources to Human@Work

Having listened to an incredible episode of Dr. Rangan Chatterjee’s podcast, “How to Win at Life Without Losing Yourself With Dr Pippa Grange” where they explain how fear holds us back in our lives, we couldn’t help but think about how fear holds us back in the workplace. 

Why is this a business relevant topic? Because fear dispels creativity and curiosity and leads to self-doubt and uncertainty – hindering our ability to perform in a productive, successful, and happy manner. And there are tons of research to back this. 

Dr. Pippa Grange, Doctor of Applied Psychology, and author of the book Fear Less: How to Win at Life Without Losing Yourselfexplains that fear is a natural emotion, but one that we need an awareness around to make sure that we are keeping it at the right size. We cannot allow it to take up too much space as it ultimately alters our course of action, our ability to have mental freedom, and be creative in our thinking. And at work, we need to be functioning optimally and feel empowered to act without the inhibitions of fear and its gang of possies – judgement, jealousy, fear of rejection, superiority, perfectionism, and thoughts that our contributions and ideas are not good enough. 

A research study on team performance undertaken by Google discovered that a defining factor in certain teams outperforming others rested solely in an authentic workplace with psychological safety. Psychological safety is a group culture that the Harvard Business School professor Amy Edmondson defines as a ‘‘shared belief held by members of a team that the team is safe for interpersonal risk-taking. A sense of confidence that the team will not embarrass, reject or punish someone for speaking up,’’ Edmondson explains. ‘‘It describes a team climate characterized by interpersonal trust and mutual respect in which people are comfortable being themselves.’’ If this is a topic that you are intrigued by, you can listen to Amy’s TEDx Talk on Building a Psychologically Safe Workplace. 

So we covered all the different aspects we consider essential when really moving the needle on workplace wellbeing. Now finally ask yourself the question; even if you have all this in place, who is ultimately responsible for wellbeing? I hope you came to the same conclusion we did; the individual. You can have everything in place and still people can feel crap. Your job is to facilitate your employees to take ownership of their own health and wellbeing and to create an environment that supports that. A big part of this ownership lies in:

  • providing your employees energy management, resilience and vitality programs to kickstart personal purpose, physical, and mental wellbeing.
  • supporting them to craft a career that matches their abilities and aspirations.

Make sure you choose evidence-based programs with studies outcomes. And make sure your leaders will role model the behaviors that support health and wellbeing. Nothing is more demotivating than coming back from a company paid employee wellbeing program wanting to make change and facing a manager that doesn’t allow nor model these behaviors. This highlights the importance of social and business wellbeing once more. So things have come full circle.

References

[1] https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/depression

[2] This includes the direct costs of health care and medicine, of other therapies, and the indirect costs such a loss of productivity. Kelland, K (2018, October 9) Mental health crisis could cost the world $16 trillion by 2030. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-mental-global-idUSKCN1MJ2QN

[3] Harvard Business Review Press ‘ How to be happy at work’

[4] Ans de Vos, Developing Sustainable Careers Across the Lifespan

Need some help to kick start your health and wellbeing strategy?

Contact us

From Human Resources to Human@Work

Having listened to an incredible episode of Dr. Rangan Chatterjee’s podcast, “How to Win at Life Without Losing Yourself With Dr Pippa Grange” where they explain how fear holds us back in our lives, we couldn’t help but think about how fear holds us back in the workplace. 

Why is this a business relevant topic? Because fear dispels creativity and curiosity and leads to self-doubt and uncertainty – hindering our ability to perform in a productive, successful, and happy manner. And there are tons of research to back this. 

Dr. Pippa Grange, Doctor of Applied Psychology, and author of the book Fear Less: How to Win at Life Without Losing Yourselfexplains that fear is a natural emotion, but one that we need an awareness around to make sure that we are keeping it at the right size. We cannot allow it to take up too much space as it ultimately alters our course of action, our ability to have mental freedom, and be creative in our thinking. And at work, we need to be functioning optimally and feel empowered to act without the inhibitions of fear and its gang of possies – judgement, jealousy, fear of rejection, superiority, perfectionism, and thoughts that our contributions and ideas are not good enough. 

A research study on team performance undertaken by Google discovered that a defining factor in certain teams outperforming others rested solely in an authentic workplace with psychological safety. Psychological safety is a group culture that the Harvard Business School professor Amy Edmondson defines as a ‘‘shared belief held by members of a team that the team is safe for interpersonal risk-taking. A sense of confidence that the team will not embarrass, reject or punish someone for speaking up,’’ Edmondson explains. ‘‘It describes a team climate characterized by interpersonal trust and mutual respect in which people are comfortable being themselves.’’ If this is a topic that you are intrigued by, you can listen to Amy’s TEDx Talk on Building a Psychologically Safe Workplace. 

Employees are human beings that bring their whole selves to work

The research into the connection between employee wellbeing and company performance just keeps on growing and the results all point in the same direction: employee wellbeing has a critical impact on numerous areas of business performance. For example, low wellbeing results in higher levels of absence and presenteeism and has an influence on employee retention [1].

Harvard business review came to the following definition of workplace wellbeing [2]:

“An organized, employer-sponsored program that is designed to support employees (and, sometimes, their families) as they adopt and sustain behaviors that reduce health risks, improve quality of life, enhance personal effectiveness, and benefit the organization’s bottom line” .

I love this one as workplace wellbeing relates to all aspects of (working) life, from the quality and safety of the physical work environment, employees’ overall physical and mental health, to how employees feel about their current job, their work environment, their peers and supervisor and the culture of the organization. As you can see that is a very broad topic and even moves beyond work as employees are human beings that bring their whole selves to work. If things at home are not working well, that will spill over into the work environment and vice versa.
The bottom line question related to Employee Health and Wellbeing is: How do we as an organization shape a work-environment where our employees come to work with energy and motivation to do their jobs AND leave our offices with energy to engage in meaningful non-work related activities, while staying healthy throughout?. If you would like to take this one step further you could set yourself a goal to help employees advance and increase their wellbeing levels becoming better, happier and healthier versions of themselves every day.

So we covered all the different aspects we consider essential when really moving the needle on workplace wellbeing. Now finally ask yourself the question; even if you have all this in place, who is ultimately responsible for wellbeing? I hope you came to the same conclusion we did; the individual. You can have everything in place and still people can feel crap. Your job is to facilitate your employees to take ownership of their own health and wellbeing and to create an environment that supports that. A big part of this ownership lies in:

  • providing your employees energy management, resilience and vitality programs to kickstart personal purpose, physical, and mental wellbeing.
  • supporting them to craft a career that matches their abilities and aspirations.

Make sure you choose evidence-based programs with studies outcomes. And make sure your leaders will role model the behaviors that support health and wellbeing. Nothing is more demotivating than coming back from a company paid employee wellbeing program wanting to make change and facing a manager that doesn’t allow nor model these behaviors. This highlights the importance of social and business wellbeing once more. So things have come full circle.

References

[1] https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/depression

[2] This includes the direct costs of health care and medicine, of other therapies, and the indirect costs such a loss of productivity. Kelland, K (2018, October 9) Mental health crisis could cost the world $16 trillion by 2030. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-mental-global-idUSKCN1MJ2QN

[3] Harvard Business Review Press ‘ How to be happy at work’

[4] Ans de Vos, Developing Sustainable Careers Across the Lifespan

From Human Resources to Human@Work

Having listened to an incredible episode of Dr. Rangan Chatterjee’s podcast, “How to Win at Life Without Losing Yourself With Dr Pippa Grange” where they explain how fear holds us back in our lives, we couldn’t help but think about how fear holds us back in the workplace. 

Why is this a business relevant topic? Because fear dispels creativity and curiosity and leads to self-doubt and uncertainty – hindering our ability to perform in a productive, successful, and happy manner. And there are tons of research to back this. 

Dr. Pippa Grange, Doctor of Applied Psychology, and author of the book Fear Less: How to Win at Life Without Losing Yourselfexplains that fear is a natural emotion, but one that we need an awareness around to make sure that we are keeping it at the right size. We cannot allow it to take up too much space as it ultimately alters our course of action, our ability to have mental freedom, and be creative in our thinking. And at work, we need to be functioning optimally and feel empowered to act without the inhibitions of fear and its gang of possies – judgement, jealousy, fear of rejection, superiority, perfectionism, and thoughts that our contributions and ideas are not good enough. 

A research study on team performance undertaken by Google discovered that a defining factor in certain teams outperforming others rested solely in an authentic workplace with psychological safety. Psychological safety is a group culture that the Harvard Business School professor Amy Edmondson defines as a ‘‘shared belief held by members of a team that the team is safe for interpersonal risk-taking. A sense of confidence that the team will not embarrass, reject or punish someone for speaking up,’’ Edmondson explains. ‘‘It describes a team climate characterized by interpersonal trust and mutual respect in which people are comfortable being themselves.’’ If this is a topic that you are intrigued by, you can listen to Amy’s TEDx Talk on Building a Psychologically Safe Workplace. 

Employees are human beings that bring their whole selves to work

The research into the connection between employee wellbeing and company performance just keeps on growing and the results all point in the same direction: employee wellbeing has a critical impact on numerous areas of business performance. For example, low wellbeing results in higher levels of absence and presenteeism and has an influence on employee retention [1].

Harvard business review came to the following definition of workplace wellbeing [2]:

“An organized, employer-sponsored program that is designed to support employees (and, sometimes, their families) as they adopt and sustain behaviors that reduce health risks, improve quality of life, enhance personal effectiveness, and benefit the organization’s bottom line” .

I love this one as workplace wellbeing relates to all aspects of (working) life, from the quality and safety of the physical work environment, employees’ overall physical and mental health, to how employees feel about their current job, their work environment, their peers and supervisor and the culture of the organization. As you can see that is a very broad topic and even moves beyond work as employees are human beings that bring their whole selves to work. If things at home are not working well, that will spill over into the work environment and vice versa.
The bottom line question related to Employee Health and Wellbeing is: How do we as an organization shape a work-environment where our employees come to work with energy and motivation to do their jobs AND leave our offices with energy to engage in meaningful non-work related activities, while staying healthy throughout?. If you would like to take this one step further you could set yourself a goal to help employees advance and increase their wellbeing levels becoming better, happier and healthier versions of themselves every day.

So we covered all the different aspects we consider essential when really moving the needle on workplace wellbeing. Now finally ask yourself the question; even if you have all this in place, who is ultimately responsible for wellbeing? I hope you came to the same conclusion we did; the individual. You can have everything in place and still people can feel crap. Your job is to facilitate your employees to take ownership of their own health and wellbeing and to create an environment that supports that. A big part of this ownership lies in:

  • providing your employees energy management, resilience and vitality programs to kickstart personal purpose, physical, and mental wellbeing.
  • supporting them to craft a career that matches their abilities and aspirations.

Make sure you choose evidence-based programs with studies outcomes. And make sure your leaders will role model the behaviors that support health and wellbeing. Nothing is more demotivating than coming back from a company paid employee wellbeing program wanting to make change and facing a manager that doesn’t allow nor model these behaviors. This highlights the importance of social and business wellbeing once more. So things have come full circle.

References

[1] https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/depression

[2] This includes the direct costs of health care and medicine, of other therapies, and the indirect costs such a loss of productivity. Kelland, K (2018, October 9) Mental health crisis could cost the world $16 trillion by 2030. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-mental-global-idUSKCN1MJ2QN

[3] Harvard Business Review Press ‘ How to be happy at work’

[4] Ans de Vos, Developing Sustainable Careers Across the Lifespan

Helping employees become better versions of themselves, isn’t that just the happy people version of ‘green washing’? Shouldn’t work be about work and achieving business results? Yes, it should and as investing in workplace wellbeing might sound soft and fluffy, the empirical research shows that wellbeing is a prerequisite for sustaining success in people and their workplaces, and not simply a benefit or byproduct [1]. Greater employee wellbeing leads to workplace engagement, which increases productivity, resulting in better business outcomes and profit [2].

Want to see the data? let’s share a few actual examples.

  • A 12-month study at Unilever in the UK showed that a health risk reduction program resulted in an average reduction of half a risk factor per individual. Next to this they reported an average increase of 8.5% in work performance in the study group, when compared with no significant difference in the group that did not receive any interventions. The conservative return on investment for this program was 3.73 to 1 [3]
  • Not unexpected, healthy employees cost you less and especially for US based companies the health care cost can be reduced significantly with the right wellbeing programs. Doctors Richard Milani and Carl Lavie demonstrated that point by studying, at a single US based employer, a random sample of 185 workers and their spouses. 57% of people with high health risk reached low-risk status by completing a worksite cardiac rehabilitation and exercise program. And every dollar invested in the intervention yielded $6 in health care savings [4].
  • And here is one from my own experience, at the time when I worked at Johnson and Johnson being responsible for the deployment of their global employee wellbeing program as part of the Occupational Health leadership team. Globally we studied the effects of the energy management training program and reported that the training yielded a significant difference in performance, promotion and retention measured in a study of > 5.000 employees. On hard dollars, these results demonstrated an actual cost saving of $60 million on recruitment and onboarding cost on 30.000 trained employees [5]. That is $2000 per trained employee, next to the benefits the company gained with increased performance. Deduct the cost per employee for the program itself and you have your real ROI. Next to the effect described above the company further studied the effects of their intervention and reported in the American Journal of Health Promotion (2018) that their training program improved 1. Purpose in life, an important component of wellbeing, 2. Sleep and energy levels and 3. sense of health and wellbeing [6].

So while often seen as an expense, an investment in your people’s health and wellbeing is actually a real asset with an interesting ROI. Some welcome the byproducts like engagement, happiness, and employer branding. As a guide, every dollar spent on promoting wellbeing in individuals and the organization as whole yields a return of approximately 1-3 dollars. So when you are thinking of investing in wellbeing and you want to make sure you get your money back, please do look further than solely health prevention and physical fitness, a piece of fruit next to the coffee machine, or free yoga on Friday afternoons. Go for the evidence-based interventions with measured results that are out there.

References

[1] Lyubomirsky, S. The benefits of frequent positive affect: Does happiness lead to success? Psychological Bulletin, 131 (6), 803-55
[2] Harter, J.K., Schmidt, FL., and Hayes, T.L. Business unit level relationship between employhee satisfaction, employee engagemen6 and business outcomes; A meta-analysis, Journal of Applied Psychology, 87;268-79
[3]  “Its Official: At Work Health Promotion Programmes Work”, by Peter Mills, E-HPM newsletter, December 2005
[4] https://hbr.org/2010/12/whats-the-hard-return-on-employee-wellness-programs
[5] Alec Munc, PhD, Adam Myer, PhD (2016) Energy for Performance®: Evaluation of Course Impact with Johnson & Johnson Employees.
[6] Das, S.K.., Mason, S., Vail, T., et al. (2018). Effectiveness of an Energy Management Training Course on Employee Well-Being: A Randomized Controlled Trial. American Journal of  Health Promotion7. https://doi.org/10.1177/0890117118776875

 

 

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Employees are human beings that bring their whole selves to work

The research into the connection between employee wellbeing and company performance just keeps on growing and the results all point in the same direction: employee wellbeing has a critical impact on numerous areas of business performance. For example, low wellbeing results in higher levels of absence and presenteeism and has an influence on employee retention [1].

Harvard business review came to the following definition of workplace wellbeing [2]:

“An organized, employer-sponsored program that is designed to support employees (and, sometimes, their families) as they adopt and sustain behaviors that reduce health risks, improve quality of life, enhance personal effectiveness, and benefit the organization’s bottom line” .

I love this one as workplace wellbeing relates to all aspects of (working) life, from the quality and safety of the physical work environment, employees’ overall physical and mental health, to how employees feel about their current job, their work environment, their peers and supervisor and the culture of the organization. As you can see that is a very broad topic and even moves beyond work as employees are human beings that bring their whole selves to work. If things at home are not working well, that will spill over into the work environment and vice versa.
The bottom line question related to Employee Health and Wellbeing is: How do we as an organization shape a work-environment where our employees come to work with energy and motivation to do their jobs AND leave our offices with energy to engage in meaningful non-work related activities, while staying healthy throughout?. If you would like to take this one step further you could set yourself a goal to help employees advance and increase their wellbeing levels becoming better, happier and healthier versions of themselves every day.

From Human Resources to Human@Work

Having listened to an incredible episode of Dr. Rangan Chatterjee’s podcast, “How to Win at Life Without Losing Yourself With Dr Pippa Grange” where they explain how fear holds us back in our lives, we couldn’t help but think about how fear holds us back in the workplace. 

Why is this a business relevant topic? Because fear dispels creativity and curiosity and leads to self-doubt and uncertainty – hindering our ability to perform in a productive, successful, and happy manner. And there are tons of research to back this. 

Dr. Pippa Grange, Doctor of Applied Psychology, and author of the book Fear Less: How to Win at Life Without Losing Yourselfexplains that fear is a natural emotion, but one that we need an awareness around to make sure that we are keeping it at the right size. We cannot allow it to take up too much space as it ultimately alters our course of action, our ability to have mental freedom, and be creative in our thinking. And at work, we need to be functioning optimally and feel empowered to act without the inhibitions of fear and its gang of possies – judgement, jealousy, fear of rejection, superiority, perfectionism, and thoughts that our contributions and ideas are not good enough. 

A research study on team performance undertaken by Google discovered that a defining factor in certain teams outperforming others rested solely in an authentic workplace with psychological safety. Psychological safety is a group culture that the Harvard Business School professor Amy Edmondson defines as a ‘‘shared belief held by members of a team that the team is safe for interpersonal risk-taking. A sense of confidence that the team will not embarrass, reject or punish someone for speaking up,’’ Edmondson explains. ‘‘It describes a team climate characterized by interpersonal trust and mutual respect in which people are comfortable being themselves.’’ If this is a topic that you are intrigued by, you can listen to Amy’s TEDx Talk on Building a Psychologically Safe Workplace. 

The impact of Zest

Even though sources of happiness differ from person to person – what makes you happy may not evoke the same emotions in another person – people with zestful traits can derive pleasure and fulfillment more often than others – maybe for different reasons, but with the same effect.

According to the character strength review by Seligman and Peterson, zest brings with it the opportunity to:

  • Experience a state of ‘flow’ at work (state of supreme motivation, enthusiasm and top results)
  • Be productive – utilizing our skills and abilities to the fullest
  • Develop secure and long-lasting interpersonal connections – both personally and professionally
  • Align their values and belief systems to their actions, so that they derive maximum pleasure and satisfaction from anything they do

Zest comes with a lot of additional benefits: besides making people high on life-energy, it makes a significant impact on the ways we perceive failures, face adversities, and bounce back on the right track. [Read more about Benefits of Zest at work]

Measure the Zestyness of your team

Simply start to check how zesty are your staff or your team!

A self-report measure of zest actually exists as part of the VIA inventory of strengths (VIA-IS). Sample items measuring zest include:

  • I want to fully participate in life, not just view it from the sidelines
  • I look forward to each new day
  • I cannot wait to get started on a project
  • I awaken with a sense of excitement about the day’s possibilities

We’ve also compiled simple tips for you to boost Zest in your work environment [read more]
Wishing you a lot of zestful days!

 

So we covered all the different aspects we consider essential when really moving the needle on workplace wellbeing. Now finally ask yourself the question; even if you have all this in place, who is ultimately responsible for wellbeing? I hope you came to the same conclusion we did; the individual. You can have everything in place and still people can feel crap. Your job is to facilitate your employees to take ownership of their own health and wellbeing and to create an environment that supports that. A big part of this ownership lies in:

  • providing your employees energy management, resilience and vitality programs to kickstart personal purpose, physical, and mental wellbeing.
  • supporting them to craft a career that matches their abilities and aspirations.

Make sure you choose evidence-based programs with studies outcomes. And make sure your leaders will role model the behaviors that support health and wellbeing. Nothing is more demotivating than coming back from a company paid employee wellbeing program wanting to make change and facing a manager that doesn’t allow nor model these behaviors. This highlights the importance of social and business wellbeing once more. So things have come full circle.

References

[1] https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/depression

[2] This includes the direct costs of health care and medicine, of other therapies, and the indirect costs such a loss of productivity. Kelland, K (2018, October 9) Mental health crisis could cost the world $16 trillion by 2030. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-mental-global-idUSKCN1MJ2QN

[3] Harvard Business Review Press ‘ How to be happy at work’

[4] Ans de Vos, Developing Sustainable Careers Across the Lifespan

In another article we explained why Psychological Capital (PsyCap) is an important capital to have on the HR agenda to help you keep your workforce at their best and future fit. In this one, we describe the concept of PsyCap.
It includes four state-like psychological resource capacities – hope, (self-) efficacy, resilience and optimism (the HERO within) of which the total output is greater than the sum of the individual parts (Luthans et al, 2004). In simple words, these 4 work together and strengthen each other giving you the 1+1=3 effect. The concept of PsyCap is one of the best studied constructs in positive psychology. High psychological capital is demonstrated to lead to better employee performance, job satisfaction, problem solving and well-being, amongst a lot of other benefits (Luthans et al, 2017).

So we covered all the different aspects we consider essential when really moving the needle on workplace wellbeing. Now finally ask yourself the question; even if you have all this in place, who is ultimately responsible for wellbeing? I hope you came to the same conclusion we did; the individual. You can have everything in place and still people can feel crap. Your job is to facilitate your employees to take ownership of their own health and wellbeing and to create an environment that supports that. A big part of this ownership lies in:

  • providing your employees energy management, resilience and vitality programs to kickstart personal purpose, physical, and mental wellbeing.
  • supporting them to craft a career that matches their abilities and aspirations.

Make sure you choose evidence-based programs with studies outcomes. And make sure your leaders will role model the behaviors that support health and wellbeing. Nothing is more demotivating than coming back from a company paid employee wellbeing program wanting to make change and facing a manager that doesn’t allow nor model these behaviors. This highlights the importance of social and business wellbeing once more. So things have come full circle.

References

[1] https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/depression

[2] This includes the direct costs of health care and medicine, of other therapies, and the indirect costs such a loss of productivity. Kelland, K (2018, October 9) Mental health crisis could cost the world $16 trillion by 2030. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-mental-global-idUSKCN1MJ2QN

[3] Harvard Business Review Press ‘ How to be happy at work’

[4] Ans de Vos, Developing Sustainable Careers Across the Lifespan

Resilience:

Bouncing back and beyond

Resilience refers to the ability of an individual to bounce back from adversity, uncertainty, risk or failure, and adapt to changing and stressful life demands (Masten & Reed, 2002; Tugade & Fredrickson, 2004). Resilient employees do well under difficult circumstances. They have the ability to positively adapt during or following stressful events, failures, and also during positively challenging events that ask a lot of us. They handle stress effectively, work through negative experiences and changes happening around them. Most people call these types of people ‘strong’ after seeing them come back from a challenging situation.

Optimism:

Realistic and Flexible

Optimists have a completely different coping approach than pessimists, they keep trying, focus on what is within their control, frame situations and challenges positively and accept what is outside their control. Simply, those high in optimism believe things will be ok in the end, they generally attribute positive events to personal, permanent and pervasive causes. And on the negative events in life they phrase them as external, temporary, and related to the situation.  Optimism goes beyond accuracy and optimism essentially is a thinking error. The research however is clear that the motivational effect is more beneficial than the calculation accuracy of pessimism.

The good news is that those positive- psychological states are open to development! You can build more of these resources in your organization and help your employees to be their best selves and their best with each other! You will have a strong impact on desired employee attitudes, behaviors, and performance. You can also nurture these resources so that they are not eaten away during turbulent times, or personal difficulties.

If you are interested to learn more about this topic, let us know, we’re passionate about it and can help out in this field.

References

  • Psychological capital and beyond. Luthans, Youssef and Avolio, Oxford University Press, 2015.
  • Psychological Capital: An Evidence-Based Positive Approach. Annual Review of Organizational Psychology and Organizational Behavior Volume 4, 2017 Luthans, pp 339-366

     

  • https://positivepsychology.com/psychological-capital-psycap/

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