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Via The Better India : 5 Ways Companies Can Use CSR To Do their Bit For Women Empowerment

When women participate in the economy, everyone benefits!

Under the current ruling dispensation, a whole host of schemes promoting entrepreneurship has come to the forefront. Among them is the Mudra Yojana Scheme for Women, which seeks to aid individual women or collective in starting new enterprises and business without the requirement for collateral.

Depending on where these businesses are in their development, the Centre provides loans up to Rs 10 lakh, in addition to a Mudra card, which functions along the lines of a credit card.

However, these women entrepreneurs could do with some additional investment or technical support, and this is where the corporate sector comes in.

The government has mandated that major corporate players need to spend a percentage of their profits in initiatives supporting social development through their corporate social responsibility arm.

These companies can definitely consider diverting some of those funds into social development ventures led by women that are not only generating money but empowering communities.

Here are five women entrepreneurs or ventures led by them that companies could invest their CSR funds in, without feeling that they are resorting to token handouts.

Looms of Ladakh:

Started by an IAS officer and his wife, this women’s cooperative in Ladakh manufactures finished knitted and woven woollen products which are sold in the open market. They make trademark pashmina-based clothing and apparel with the raw material locally available. Among the many standout features of this initiative, what tops the list is how the cooperative has empowered once illiterate rural women in Ladakh into employing their skills passed down through generations towards making and selling products that provide them with necessary financial security.

Devi Murthy: Kamal Kisan

Even though 60% of India’s population depends on agriculture for their livelihood, being a farmer is becoming less profitable by the day. In comes Kamal Kisan, a venture started by engineer and business graduate Devi Murthy, which develops customised low-cost farm equipment for farmers. Among other products, Kamal Kisan has developed vegetable planters, power weeders, sugarcane planters, versatile mulch layers and bed makers.

Chayaa Nanjappa: Nectar Fresh

Nectar Fresh is a rural enterprise by Chayaa Nanjappa, a resident of Mysuru. The enterprise, which sources high-quality monofloral honey in vast volumes, has customers in Europe and the United States and has already earned the recognition of the Confederation of Women Entrepreneurs, which conferred her with the ‘National Best Entrepreneur Award’ in 2014. The venture has given low-income tribal communities in the Mysore and Mandya districts a decent livelihood.

Sumita Ghose: Rangsutra

Established by Sumita Ghose, this artisan collective works with 3000 artisans spread across remote regions in Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and West Bengal and Manipur to sell unique handcrafted products. Some of Rangsutra’s major customers are Fab India and Ikea. Among the groups of artisans that it works with are women from Madhya Pradesh who gave up scavenging, and the Manipur Women Gun Survivors.

Mehvish Mushtaq: Dial Kashmir

In a region which is more in the headlines for civil strife and internet shutdowns, business opportunities seem terribly limited. However, a women entrepreneur, Mehvish Mushtaq, has emerged out of the ashes.

Mehvish is the first Kashmiri woman to develop an android application which operates as a ‘Yellow Pages” for the region. Her app has helped many by becoming a one-stop source for information on healthcare, education, transport, the police and various other sectors.

These are just five ventures, and there are much more making a real difference in the lives of ordinary citizens. Last Saturday, The Better India brought your attention to Chetna Sinha, a banker, social activist and president of the microfinance company Mann Deshi Mahila Sahkari Bank, who co-chaired the recent edition of the World Economic Forum at Davos. Speaking to Mint before she left for the Swiss Alps, she announced that her microfinance company in partnership with IFMR Investments would soon launch a SEBI-registered fund for women micro-entrepreneurs.

Companies could take some inspiration from this initiative.

Via CMS Wire : Change Management: The Key to Successful Digital Transformations

Companies of all types and sizes are investing heavily in the digitization of their business models. Driven by the changing consumer expectations that B2C digital juggernauts like Uber, Netflix and Amazon have created, many companies are investing in reimagining their business. To achieve relevance in what is being called the Fourth Industrial Revolution — the convergence of offline and digital, mobile, artificial intelligence, social and cloud — companies must be more customer focused, agile, lean and interactive.

Any digital transformation includes the following core ingredients:

  • Strategy — aligning vision, customer experience, processes and technology.
  • User-Centered Design — mobile first and personalized.
  • Agility in Delivery — iterative and adaptable.
  • Integration of Software, Platforms and Technology — choosing environments and products that harmonize.
  • Data, Analytics and Insights — constant feedback loop.
  • Product Design Mindset in Execution — minimal viable product and fail-fast mentality.

Despite knowledge of the integral elements of a successful digital transformation, a recent survey by Couchbase uncovered a nearly 90 percent failure rate by CIOs and technology leaders who have tried to execute digital transformation initiatives.

Researchers at McKinsey unpacked this trend in another way, ultimately highlighting the critical part change management plays in driving successful outcomes. However, they also found that most change management efforts fail because outdated models and change techniques are fundamentally misaligned with today’s dynamic business environment.

I have successfully applied the following change management approach both as a leader at a Fortune 500 company and as a consultant implementing large digital programs within Fortune 1000 companies. After you read this article, let’s talk about what has worked for you and what you’ll try next.

Invest in Change Management, Early and Often

As my definition of change management may differ from yours, for the purposes of this article let’s use the Prosci definition: “the process, tools and techniques to manage the people side of change to achieve a required business outcome.”

Also, as every organization that delivers digital programs has an implementation methodology, I will be using that of my company, “The 7Summits Way” (pictured below), to talk about the application of change management techniques throughout the implementation lifecycle of a digital transformation initiative. The elements can easily be pieced out and applied to whatever methodology your organization prefers.

The Stages of Digital Change Management

1. Prepare

Change management should be at the center of your digital transformation vision and “art of the possible” thinking. To garner the necessary support, leaders are often laser-focused in this phase on business intelligence and securing funding and resources against their grand plan. What is frequently missed is laying the right foundation for driving change from the start. Key change management activities here should include:

  • Developing a digital transformation charter that articulates your business goals and the strategies to achieve these goals.
  • Identifying executive stakeholders and functional change agents. They will be key to removing roadblocks and creating advocacy, if brought in early.
  • Creating or aligning with a center of excellence (COE) to manage all digital transformation efforts and the governance structure.
  • Maintaining a change backlog to start tracking and mitigating risks (e.g. end user adoption, employee resistance, retirement of legacy processes, etc.).

Your change goals during the Prepare phase are to create visibility for your program, activate change advocates, and document your biggest and most immediate risks.

2. Define

The Define phase typically involves selecting desired business outcomes, uncovering audience value through journey mapping, defining requirements, designing the user experience and solution elements, and documenting your execution roadmap. These are all key inputs to your change plan. Additional change management activities during the Define phase should include:

  • Holding regular steering meetings with your COE stakeholders, impacted functional leaders and change agents to refine your vision and plan.
  • Conducting an organizational readiness assessment that covers: team structure and sponsorship, governance, adoption, measurement and communication.
  • Hosting change management workshops that take inputs from your strategy (vision, objectives, KPIs, requirements, research, personas) and uncover insights, strategies and tactics needed to drive your change across your project lifecycle. These typically fall into categories such as: steering, resistance management, training, coaching plans, user feedback and measurement, content strategy and communications.

Your change goal during the Define phase is to identify key tactics that will drive your intended change by your target audiences and in what order (pre-launch, at launch, post-launch) they will be most impactful.

3. Design

Design is the phase in which the digital transformation blueprint is finalized. Wireframes, interactive prototypes, proof of concepts, high fidelity designs, solution architecture charts, integration mapping, and data modeling help bring the vision to life for a broader set of stakeholders. From a change perspective, this phase is when the inputs from the previous phases are formed into a plan that will inform your Build phase. Key activities should include:

  • Solidifying change team role definitions, workstreams and RACI.
  • Resolving business process impacts identified during requirements gathering.
  • Defining a measurement plan, including tangible KPIs.
  • Developing a content strategy and plan.
  • Designing a training plan that includes one to one, one to many and self-based learning.
  • Drafting a communication plan that builds excitement.

Your change goal during the Design phase is to activate your change workstreams to create their tactical work plans and schedules.

4. Build and Verify

While highly differentiated from a development perspective, the Build and Verify stages can be grouped when considering impactful change management approaches. Build and Verify is when your digital transformation becomes real as developers execute against your product backlog. This is also where change management fortitude begins to flounder.

Progress is easy to measure in terms of the development of working code, so the more intangible elements are often de-prioritized. Typically, in digital transformations destined for failure, leaders entering the Verify phase begin to organize a change management workstream. Successful organizations, on the other hand, merge their project management tools, combining requirements and user stories with the previously defined change management plans and tasks. Having one project management environment inclusive of requirements and business tasks forces collaboration and discussion between change leads, project managers, and developers. Change management activities should be included in the same planning sessions, reviews, and daily stand-ups as development items.

Key change activities at this point should include:

  • Sequencing change management tasks and deliverables.
  • Importing sequenced and assigned change management tasks into a shared project management environment.
  • Meeting regularly with product teams and developers to align change efforts with development realities.
  • Performing iterative development and quality assurance of all deliverables.
  • Holding feedback sessions to ensure your plan is relevant and resonating.
  • Monitoring and addressing the change backlog.
  • Executing pre-launch activities.

Your change goal during the Build and Verify phases is to collaborate with your development team and end users by adapting and executing the change management plan.

5. Launch

It’s time to Launch — congratulations! But the work is not over. The Launch phase is the most critical moment for any change management team. It’s time to drive the change and adoption of the digital tool. If change management has been properly integrated into the digital transformation initiative, your change team should have already completed most of the work. All of the Pre-Launch activities are completed, key stakeholders are trained, business processes have been created or adapted, and measurement plans are in place and awaiting user data. Key change management activities in the Launch phase include:

  • Executing the At Launch and Post Launch adoption tactics.
  • Shifting from a project management to program management governance model.
  • Listening, measuring and sharing feedback with product owners.
  • Monitoring and addressing the change backlog.

Your change goal in the Launch phase is setting up your organization for sustaining change.

The Key to Successful Digital Transformation

Digital transformation is key to the survival of many companies, yet digital transformations are tough and frequently fail. Without successful change management, digital transformation efforts will fail to deliver results.

Over the course of my career I’ve seen too many transformation efforts fail because there was a lack of resources, attention and awareness of the work required to effectively execute a change management plan. Companies that fail focus their time, attention and budget exclusively on program design and development. I encourage organizations to give an equal amount of effort and resource to change management. At the end of the day, change management is about getting people to use the tools you create for them so you can achieve true business value. Integrating these efforts into your digital transformation initiatives from kickoff through to launch will not guarantee success, but will stack the deck in your favor.

Via Forbes : It’s Time To Commit To Hiring Employees Over The Age Of 45

There are so many articles and discussions currently trending on diversity and inclusion. While I am a strong advocate for every initiative that welcomes and includes people of diverse backgrounds, educations and points of view at the table, I also believe that employers can take this approach to the next level.

Candidates 45 and older have priceless knowledge, experience and expertise that, if utilized correctly, is the secret sauce worthy of investing in. When it comes to diversity efforts, we are not focusing enough on the value older workers bring to the workforce. Ageism continues to be the albatross of qualified candidates that is a real and present factor contributing to older workers being boxed out. Yes, there have been some improvements in the unemployment rate, but not enough when millions of older workers are still looking for work.

I read an article recently by Dr. Anselm Anyoha in which he wrote candidly about getting older. He noted that as people age, it seems that society begins to “conspire to get rid of them” in order to make room for the upcoming generations.

It’s a solid point, considering that exclusionary norms and tactics support the notion that younger is better, a homogeneous workforce is “right,” and diversity doesn’t matter. As long as these norms continue, we all lose, as it becomes us versus them.

The older population has an uncanny, ambitious drive and profound determination, but unfortunately, it often goes untapped. Many older workers are still vibrant and capable candidates wanting to return to their industry and/or careers. However, current trends in hiring practices do not support or recognize this tangible asset. According to a New York Times article by Quoctrung Bui, “older workers are finding employment in lower-skilled service jobs. They are 65% more likely to find work in child care, 93% more likely to work as cab drivers and twice as likely to find work in retail.”

I recently had the pleasure of working with a 70-year-old attorney, and I was blown away by how sharp he was. His wisdom and experience were priceless. Had I worked with a younger attorney, I would have gotten the same tangible advice, but I would have missed out on valuable knowledge and expertise.

Having a diverse and inclusive workforce proves optimal to operating success. This great nation is a melting pot overflowing with phenomenal talents across all ages and ethnicities. I believe that we, the people, can make concerted efforts toward real change in which we recognize, celebrate, collaborate and support each other’s contributions to the continuously shifting employment landscape.

Making real change requires collective efforts from employers, employees and participation from state and local government. To lead the change in the inclusion of older workers, employers can create a culture that is blind to ageism, capitalizing on the talents of older workers through an age-friendly work environment that utilizes workforce development strategies easily incorporated into hiring practices. This would result in fostering a multigenerational workplace where capitalizing on innovations in talent management leads to creative solutions to pressing business problems.

Older workers possess unique qualifiers in addition to their experience that makes them strong candidates who are very much so teachable. Create opportunities that forge mentor-mentee relationships. Cross-train to increase retention and ensure that skills and knowledge stay within the company. Allow greater ownership and control over work-life balance tactics, such as telecommuting, job sharing and shift-swapping.

Around the world, cultures respect, appreciate and glean from the wisdom possessed by older generations. It almost seems as if our society is putting workers 45 years of age and older out to pasture, viewing them as not valuable. I say shame on us for turning our noses up at this wealth of top talent. Diversity and inclusion is about all people getting an opportunity to demonstrate their strengths, gifts and talents. Everyone deserves a chance, and older job seekers must be included.

As employers embark on new budget and growth opportunities during the second half of 2018, the challenge still remains — can you commit to hiring employees over the age of 45? I welcome the opportunity to discuss any questions you might have.

Via Business 2 Community : Why Google’s Onboarding Process Works 25% Better Than Everyone Else’s

Even tech giants have humble beginnings.

In the halcyon days when Google was making the transition from a bedroom to a rented garage in Menlo Park, it won’t surprise you to learn they didn’t have a tight onboarding process in place.

For years Google ran on a single, sprawling spreadsheet including a ranked list of the company’s top 100 projects. The projects were confusingly graded on a scale between “far out” and “skunkworks”, and the founders handled the process with a ‘who cares’ attitude.

Since that point, everyone knows Google has made leaps not only in the Internet space but also in the workplace. The company is the #3 world’s most valuable brand and the #3 best employer in America. Its made extremely effective tweaks to its hiring process over the years, but what isn’t reported as often is its approach to new employee onboarding — the process of getting a new hire equipped with everything they need to integrate into the company culture, work effectively and succeed.

The wackier aspects of Google’s orientation process are widely known. We’ve heard about the Noogler beanies with motorized propellers, and the Mountain View all-Noogler TGIF meetings where the founders “just come in and make some dad jokes”. The inner workings of the process, however — the parts that make it so notoriously effective — aren’t as obvious.

In this article, I’m going to run through the nuts and bolts of Google’s ‘just in time’ employee onboarding process, and some of the supporting events that happen during.

Google’s ‘just in time’ onboarding checklist

Just one day before a new hire joins, the hire’s manager is sent an email with five small tasks that will need their attention.

The list is pretty simple:

  1. Have a discussion about roles and responsibilities
  2. Match the new hire with a peer buddy
  3. Help the new hire build a social network
  4. Set up employee onboarding check-ins once a month for the new hire’s first six months
  5. Encourage open dialogue

The fact that managers get sent these instructions with only 24 hours to prepare plays on the recency effect — the tendency for people to recall the last thing that happened to them better than things in between.

Put simply, getting that email in front of the manager “just in time” makes it easier to remember. This, in turn, means that they are more likely to execute it correctly.

The email isn’t mass mailed, either. It’s sent only to the manager who needs to see it, making them feel like they’re directly responsible for getting it done. The checklist is no-nonsense and doesn’t include a ton of instructional material, which is instead given to the Noogler with more time on their hands to get familiar with it.

After all, when creating reference materials and checklists (especially if you’re strapped for time), bare-bones is always the way to go.

This small change — creating a sense of urgency and responsibility — has improved onboarding results by 25% at Google.

Why Google’s checklist is laser-focused on company culture

If you look through the five steps of Google’s onboarding checklist, you’ll notice that three of them are focused purely on company culture.

That’s because Google is known to be more than your average organization with bland corporate practices. They believe it’s the “people that make Google the kind of company it is”.

Much like startups, Google is known for turning their noses up at a stuffy work environment. Despite being one of the world’s biggest companies it still acts like it’s a fun-loving founding team from the early days.

Maybe that’s why it ranks so highly as an employer – it has the same attitude towards traditional employment spaces as most of us do to working in them.

Google has learned to prioritize relationships and fun at work because studies have shown happy employees outperform the competition by 20% and are 12% more productive. In fact, Google raised its employee satisfaction by 37% by implementing company culture initiatives.

During the onboarding process, Google supports employee development by educating employees and inducting them into company culture (with both lectures and beers).

Obviously, this won’t work for everyone and it highly depends on the kind of culture your company has. Latham & Watkins LLP (the world’s top-earning law firm) wouldn’t blend quite so well with a more informal or employee-centric company as their clients (and their security) should always come before anything else.

That’s why Google is (almost) unique in this way. Even though the atmosphere and work naturally come with a lot of pressure, it’s the collaborative nature and culture that lets employees at places like Google and Pixar truly thrive.

Hosting a series of intense lectures

While many companies train employees on the job by getting them to dive into the task and learn as they go, Google can spend upwards of two weeks immersing new hires in the culture, and Google-specific theory such as ‘the life of a query’ and ‘the life of an ad’.

This educational approach and fast-response onboarding are necessary because even brand new employees get to work on important projects and key features of the Google architecture.

It’s not that they don’t trust their new employees to work on important projects. It’s more that they give their new employees a crash course in everything they need to know and then give them a chance to prove themselves on something that really matters.

Unlike other onboarding processes, Google’s will put trust in you as part of the open approach to company culture and inclusion. As you might imagine, that shows a level of confidence that will almost certainly rub off on new hires.

You’re not starting from the bottom on menial tasks, which gives you an incentive to stick with it through the hard work and really try your best.

In return, it’s easy to suggest that Google benefits just as much from these new appointments due to that drive to prove themselves capable. After all, it stands to reason that this would demonstrate to the team what the new hire is capable of at this early stage and thus all more effective placement on future projects.

Educating about company culture

When you join Google, you’ve got a lot of mental molding to happen before you can be part of the hallowed ranks. You’re going to need a mix of technical knowledge and company culture education to slot seamlessly into your new role.

Some things don’t change from company to company – the amount of studying you’ll need to do varies depending on your role. It can be anything from none (all optional classes) to two weeks of lectures from senior engineers where they talk about their experience and share their “engineering perspective”.

Kellen Donahue, a former Google software engineer says:

“It seems very overwhelming. There’s so much to learn and read, and at times it seems like when you really understand a concept you realize you just saw the tip of the iceberg”

Of course, there’s more to company culture than lectures and education.

Nooglers are welcomed with a friendly drink after work, but as well as that, the booze flows freely during TGIF meetings. As one engineer pointed out, “if you try hard enough, you can always find alcohol”. Whether or not this negatively affects their work isn’t easy to measure, but you can be sure it helps break the ice and gets new employees feeling comfortable — and that’s mostly what orientation is all about.

Google’s company culture is far from typical, so this kind of instruction from senior employees is great for showing them what a long-term stay might look like. Coupled with the alcoholic icebreaker, you have a potent mix designed to help new hires immediately get stuck into their culture and up to speed with any expectations.

Adopt Google’s onboarding process in your own culture

I won’t sit here and pretend that Google is the perfect template of how to onboard and interact with all employees. It isn’t, and neither are other such standout examples of how companies treat their employees (like Pixar).

However, when discarding the culture the onboarding process itself is absolutely still relevant to almost any company.

The principles behind it cover everything a healthy employer-employee relationship needs:

  • Specifically laying out roles and responsibilities to both parties
  • Giving support to the new hire (a peer buddy) to ease initial friction
  • Introducing the hire to teammates and other contacts to break the ice and start building their network
  • Checking in on them once per month to field questions and smooth out the process without micromanaging
  • Encouraging open dialogue to get useful feedback to improve your own processes

All you have to do now is to take those principles and apply them to your own employee onboarding processes and adapt the whole thing to tie into your company culture.

If you don’t already have a documented onboarding process, check out our free new employee onboarding processes for some ready-to-use templates.

Via Forbes : Your Employee Engagement Strategy Needs More Wellness

Wellness and employee engagement go hand-in-hand. When an employee is happy with their job, it positively affects their health. When an employee is healthy and feeling their best mentally and physically, they’ll feel happier in the workplace. It’s a relationship that builds off of one another, and employers should really take advantage of that.

A study by Gallup found that 62% of engaged employees feel their work positively affects their physical health. However, when it comes to disengaged employees, this number drops to 39% and a mere 22% among actively disengaged employees. Out of these self-assessed disengaged employees, 54% say their work life has a negative effect on their health, while 51% see a negative effect on their well-being.

The results were even more dramatic when it came to employees’ psychological health. Gallup found that 78% of engaged workers feel their work lives benefit them psychologically, while just 48% of disengaged employees and 15% of actively disengaged employees say the same. Not surprisingly, 51% of actively disengaged employees feel their work lives are having a negative effect on their psychological well-being – as compared to 20% of disengaged workers and just 6% of engaged workers.

For a refresher, engaged employees are often described as involved, committed and enthusiastic. Disengaged employees are usually mentally checked-out, unmotivated and just “going through the motions” to get a paycheck. Actively disengaged employees are unhappy with their jobs and let that unhappiness drive them at work. They risk spreading this negativity to co-workers.

Not only do disengaged employees run the risk of spreading negativity and lowering office morale, they’re also costly to businesses. Gallup found that an actively disengaged employee costs their organization $3,400 for every $10,000 of salary, or 34%. With some research suggesting that as many as 87% of workers are disengaged from their jobs, this isn’t something employers should ignore.

Creating an engaged workforce is no small task. It takes effort and some investing on the employer’s side of things to keep employees happy and motivated in their roles. But the payoff is well worth it. Engaged employees perform significantly higher than their disengaged counterparts and are generally more loyal to their company.

So, how can a corporate wellness program help drive employee engagement?

Employees feel engaged when work feels more like a community and less like a factory. Employee wellness programs help foster a sense of community in the workplace. Wellness practices help bring teammates together through challenges, activities and healthy workplace habits. Employers are also able to demonstrate their support towards employees through offering wellness solutions and educational opportunities. Investing in an employee’s well-being is investing in their happiness.

A survey by Virgin Pulse found that 85% of companies say wellness programs support employee engagement. Approximately 42% of the survey respondents reported that their top reason for implementing a wellness program was to improve employee engagement. Along with employee engagement, respondents also reported that wellness programs had a positive effect on recruitment, retention and overall company culture.

Let’s break down how a focus on workplace wellness helps boosts employee engagement:

Stronger Work Relationships

Believe it or not, work relationships have a strong influence on employee health, happiness and job satisfaction. Unfortunately, workplace loneliness is considered to be a growing epidemic in modern society. Employees who don’t have supportive connections in the workplace are much more likely to feel disconnected from their jobs and become disengaged in their work altogether. Wellness programs can help fix this problem by offering employees opportunities for social connection. Whether it’s through walking clubs, group fitness classes or completing wellness challenges together, employees are more likely to feel engaged once they are able to connect with their peers on a deeper level.

Healthier Behaviors

Many health behaviors impact employee engagement. Habits such as sleep, nutrition and exercise can all have either positive or negative impacts on employees’ moods, happiness, attitudes and workplace behaviors. When employees practice unhealthy habits – such as getting fast food every day or not getting enough sleep – they don’t feel their best at work. Consequently, they won’t perform their best at work, either. However, when employees eat healthily, exercise regularly and get enough sleep, they’ll feel and perform their best. Wellness programs help support and promote these healthy habits among the workforce. Employees are much more likely to be engaged when they work for a company that nurtures a strong culture of wellness.

Less Stress

Workplace stress has been a top challenge for corporate America for years now. Employees dealing with chronic stress will not be engaged workers. In fact, stress is one of the biggest threats to employee engagement. When utilized properly, a workplace wellness program can help reduce some of the stress in the office. Wellness offerings such as stress management classes, on-site meditation groups and chair massages give employees the opportunity to relieve some stress at work. In turn, this helps boost employee engagement.

Improved Mental Well-Being

Mental and emotional health both impact employee engagement. An employee can’t be fully engaged at work if they are dealing with any mental and emotional health issues. Employers can help support mental well-being in the workplace by addressing it in their wellness initiatives and activities. Wellness programs that offer ongoing mental health education, resources and support help remove this barrier on employee engagement.

Higher Morale

Employee engagement is almost nonexistent at organizations with low employee morale. In fact, low morale almost always means employees are disengaged and often looking for work elsewhere. Wellness programs help boost employee morale by creating a strong company culture and bringing employees together to achieve wellness goals. When office morale is high, employee engagement soars.

When it comes to utilizing employee wellness programs to boost engagement, it’s important to remember that employee wellness is more than just nutrition and fitness. Effective workplace wellness initiatives will help employees become healthier and happy in all different aspects of their lives. To truly boost employee engagement, wellness initiatives must be comprehensive and personalized to fit the needs of the workforce.

Here’s how employers can utilize their workplace wellness programs as a part of their employee engagement strategy:

  • Invest holistically. Employers need to look at the whole person when designing and implementing wellness strategies. Employee engagement will not improve unless different health factors are addressed, including financial health, mental well-being, stress management, sleep habits, social well-being and much more. It’s a good idea for employers to invest in different activities and resources that touch on all of these elements.
  • Align goals. Wellness goals and productivity goals are more similar than one might think. Wellness programs will benefit from aligning wellness goals with productivity goals. For example, employers should focus on healthy habits that boost work performance. Encourage regular breaks throughout the day, have employees go for a walk when they are feeling stressed and provide energy-boosting snacks in break rooms.
  • Foster a culture of wellness. An effective wellness program will promote healthy habits among the workforce. Employers should provide healthy food options, encourage regular exercise throughout the workday and practice stress-relieving activities as a team. A strong culture of wellness naturally boosts employee engagement.

When implemented properly, wellness can play a vital role in your employee engagement strategy. Healthy habits lead to increased happiness in the workplace, while engagement and happiness in the workplace improve physical and mental well-being. Employers will benefit from building upon the relationship between wellness and engagement. A happy and healthy employee will be your best employee!