Last updated 22 December 2022 ·
More and more companies are committing to a remote or hybrid working setup following the pandemic. Whilst there are many advantages to this new working trend, it can also contribute to feelings of stress and pressure. To minimise this, the importance of happiness and well-being practices has risen dramatically, and business leaders should encourage these in the workplace to keep their team healthy and satisfied.
Happy employees that feel truly supported in the workplace tend to be more engaged in their work, more productive and more motivated to produce good quality output that helps move the business forward.
Here are five well-being practices that should be actively encouraged amongst remote and office-based workers:
1. Commit to a healthy work environment.
It’s inevitable for employees to feel isolated at times when working remotely. The lack of face-to-face interaction may make it hard for them to forge connections and foster loneliness. As such, you should create a foolproof plan to allow your company to establish bonds and friendships, forming ‘work friends’ or introducing a buddy system.
Workplace camaraderie makes your team happier while ensuring that projects are met smoothly. Employees that get along with each other can collaborate well to get jobs done, work on similar ideas, and have purposeful interactions. They can also share wins and failures, further promoting a sense of belongingness to the group.
You could do this by creating opportunities for your team to work in groups. Pair people you think will work well together, like matching up those with the same interests. You could also hold cross-team collaborations on certain projects to expose your company to different ways of thinking.
2. Prioritise work-life blend
Often, employees shift to remote positions because they crave a much better work-life blend. Going virtual is also much more economical and convenient than in-office employment. However, there are also drawbacks to this setting, including the tendency to fall prey to the ‘always on’ trap.
To avoid this, it’s best to schedule fixed office hours to reduce screen time. Implement an 8 to 6 policy, where work emails are only open from 8 am to 6 pm on a weekday. That, or switch to a flexible setup that enables you to work anytime so long as projects are met, and people understand that they may not get a reply when working outside the usual office hours. You could also create a detailed timetable that gives you and your team a day or two for a digital detox.
There’s no denying that technology plays a massive part in remote work. However, this doesn’t mean that your whole week should revolve around it. Ensure your employees are conscious of how they use their devices; most importantly, everyone knows when to sign out! Encourage them to work hard for a higher level of mental stimulation and job satisfaction but also live their lives and spend time on things that matter outside of work, like staying in shape.
3. Foster a growth mindset
To increase your team’s happiness and job satisfaction, it’s best to adopt a growth mindset. This allows you to thrive on challenges and see failures not as setbacks but as stepping stones to success. Rather than interpreting things in a negative light, your company will use it for further improvements and growth.
You could start by listing all your achievements, including details on how hard you worked to complete a particular task. Your team could also benefit from some constructive feedback, like how to improve on a project or what they could do differently the next time. Of course, ensure that these are delivered positively rather than harshly. Working smart instead of hard can help you achieve a more balanced workflow.
Similarly, you should also remember to commend personal and team growth. Employee appreciation goes a long way; acknowledgement can increase happiness and productivity. Celebrate your team’s wins, like giving them a shoutout at a group meeting or providing an incentive. Encourage employees to continually make progress instead of forever seeking perfection but not moving forward!
4. Establish regular wellness check-ins
Even though your team operates in a remote work setting, this doesn’t mean you should slack up on workplace wellness. In fact, this should be prioritised since it’s challenging to monitor an employee’s health in real time. Also, your coworkers are likely stuck at home for the most part, so it’s important to do regular wellness check-ins.
Hint: it’s essential not only to emphasise physical fitness but also to mental well-being as well. If you notice anyone showing signs of burnout or having a hard time, reach out to ask if there’s anything wrong. They may not open up immediately, but it’s still best to give them your support. For instance, give them leeway on deadlines when they’re not feeling their best, if possible.
5. Encourage connections with family and friends
One of the best ways to live happier is to establish meaningful social connections. This may seem like a hurdle, especially since you and your team work remotely. However, being employed virtually doesn’t equate to isolation and missing out on social life.
Encourage your team to catch up on much-needed family time during the weekends. Even a spontaneous night out with friends effectively rekindles bonds and relationships. Simply ensure that your team are keeping in touch with important people in their life.
Shifting to remote work may require a certain level of flexibility, but it should not be overwhelmingly stressful for you and your team. To avoid struggles, adopt practices and techniques that prioritise your team’s happiness and well-being. Doing so will increase productivity, collaboration, and job satisfaction even without being in an actual workplace. For more information, check out our guide - How to increase productivity, efficiency and effectiveness in the workplace: Ten top tactics to turbocharge your growth.
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