When it comes to reinventing the workplace, your approach to health and wellbeing can make or break your efforts. From C-Suite to entry-level employees, health has a direct correlation with productivity and job satisfaction. To gain insight into how Delta Capita is reinventing health and wellbeing at work, we spoke with Programme Manager Stuart Goss.
Over the past 14 months, we have seen a huge shift in the way we all engage in our work. Spare bedrooms, kitchens, and dining rooms have doubled as the ‘new normal’ office space for many. But for all the convenience and benefits that home working has provided us – eliminated daily commutes, slashed travel and subsistence costs, extra time spent with immediate family – the pandemic has also caused companies to re-evaluate their approach to striking the optimal balance between ensuring the productivity of staff in a home office environment, whilst also placing sufficient emphasis on health and wellbeing.
Progressive companies like Delta Capita understand the importance of supporting their employees in the pursuit of a healthy lifestyle, and the proven benefits it can have on both quality of output and overall levels of staff satisfaction (and therefore, retention).
Ensuring a positive, top-down attitude to health and wellbeing in the workplace fosters an ethos where staff feel empowered to allocate sufficient time out during the day to step away from their desks and take some exercise. Companies that actively encourage the adoption of frequent activity, with all the mood-boosting effects it provides, will reap the benefits of more focused and productive teams.
Even measures such as advocating a shift towards walking conference calls can have a significant impact on improving concentration and alertness during the day.
Personally, during the initial months of the first lockdown, I found it relatively easy to get out for a walk, run or cycle during the day – the situation was novel, the weather was glorious, and the kids needed time outside between online lessons to burn off some energy.
As it became evident that circumstances were unlikely to change any time soon, the line between work and personal time began to blur, stress levels started ramping up and, as we headed into late autumn, the inclination to get out and exercise dipped. My focus was squarely on the list of action items and deliverables that needed completing. When I did manage to get out to take some exercise, it was a solitary affair, without feedback or targets.
Thus, towards the end of 2020, when the Covid-19 situation was worsening, and we were heading into a further lockdown, I felt the need to adopt a new approach to improve my motivation. I was already connected to a few colleagues in my immediate team on the Strava activity tracking app, but I decided to set up a workplace running club, to extend the reach and positive benefits that being part of a community group might offer.
With that in mind, I set up a club – Delta Capita Runners – on Strava. In part, the aim of the club was to give myself a motivational ‘kick’ to get more exercise in, knowing that if I committed to something with a virtual audience watching, there would be a greater chance of success. The added benefits of creating a club being that it would create new introductions, and build a sense of community across business lines, regardless of location, ability level, or preferred training schedule.
Delta Capita positively and repeatedly encouraged others to join the club as part of the ‘Focus on Wellbeing’ initiative, and the virtual training club has continued to grow since its inception. There are many activities involved that help to bolster overall motivation: Giving or receiving positive comments for completing an activity, achieving a personal goal, and making the number one spot on the leader board are just a few examples.
Thanks to technology, the Delta Capita running club has facilitated connections across business functions and countries that normal day-to-day operation might not provide – particularly during a sustained period of home working. Additionally, it has offered an insight into the lives of colleagues outside of a work setting, which adds an extra dimension through a shared, common interest.
With the new normal operating model likely to be a blend of home and office-based working for the foreseeable future, it is vital that companies take a progressive and holistic approach to supporting and actively encouraging staff to allocate time to focus on their physical and mental wellbeing. Those that focus on reinventing health and wellness in the workplace will very likely benefit from a healthier, happier, and more engaged workforce.
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