Gen Z workers have different expectations and preferences regarding how, when, and where work is done in comparison to the older workers, many of whom established their careers in environments where a standard 9-5 office schedule was the norm. This could explain why they are more comfortable with these traditional work arrangements, less likely to complain about a return to 'normal' and may perceive remote work as less productive. Lou Campbell, co-founder and director of Wellbeing Partners, said older generations can be “too scared or ashamed” to talk about workplace issues due to fear of repercussions, or have been taught to “get on with it”. Differing generational views on the expectations of work “can lead to friction within teams because quite simply, Gen Z are rejecting the traditional paradigms on which concepts of work and success have been based”
HR is instrumental in culture change and initiatives for menopause and menstruation support, says BSI guidance
Lou Campbell, programmes director at Wellbeing Partners, said training for HR, managers, leaders and all employees was “absolutely key”, and advised it consisted of two modules. “[The modules are] information on what support and adjustments should be available to women, if required, when they are experiencing symptoms related to periods/menstruation or menopause, plus the skills for how to have a supportive conversation about menopause or periods.” Campbell added that training and awareness of other “hormonal fluctuations that impact women’s wellbeing”, such as the early stages of pregnancy, would be “fantastic”.
3 steps to reduce anxiety
Anxiety, and its fellow travellers of stress and depression, make up nearly half of all the work-related illnesses in Great Britain, with an estimated 17 million workdays lost to these conditions in 2021-22. This is not simply an ‘issue’ to be aware of anymore, it is becoming a workplace health crisis that needs effective HR leadership. It is imperative, for both the mental wellbeing of our staff and for the organisation itself, that HR departments prioritise supporting staff who are struggling, offering the assistance and services they need to help reduce anxiety and enable them to contribute effectively to their workplace.
Pedro Pascal has a great tip for managing anxiety – here’s why it works
James Milford, Head of Behavioural Sciences at Wellbeing Partners, delivers sessions and courses for anxiety management. So, why is a hand on the heart so comforting? ‘Finding a way to both acknowledge the vulnerability whilst also supporting yourself through it is key – exactly what Pedro Pascal is doing here,’ Milford explains. ‘The hand over the heart is allowing the anxiety, not seeing it as an enemy to defeat, and it is also a physical manifestation of support. ‘Research into such compassionate gestures has shown that it can stimulate feelings of support, care and resilience.’
How organisations can support menopausal workers – and why they should
The fact that menopause is becoming more widely discussed in the workplace is something to be celebrated. There is much hard work, predominantly led by women, around increasing the understanding of menopause and removing stigma and shame around this normal, natural phase in women’s lives. However, as the topic becomes more widely discussed, there is a growing trend for menopausal women to be discussed as a homogenous group, who all share an identical, challenging journey through menopause. This is not the case at all, and it is vital for workplaces to understand the distinctions and vast range of experiences of women, so that they may be supported in a way that is empowering and enables them to thrive at work
Work-related stress leading to employee physical pain
Lou Campbell, programme director of employee mental health company Wellbeing Partners, said the findings highlight the toll of stress at work. Speaking to HR magazine, she said: "Burnout from excessive work-related stress can lead to both physical and mental health issues. Inflammation is a particular side effect of chronic stress. “Providing employees with an in-house team of fully qualified wellbeing counsellors is what progressive employers are doing. Prevention of ill-health is much more cost effective than remedy for illness, and is also the right thing to do for employees' wellbeing."
Cost of living crisis has changed culture in SMEs
Lou Campbell, programme director of employee mental health service Wellbeing Partners, said employee mental health should be considered during this time. She said: "At Wellbeing Partners we’ve seen a 253% increase of employees accessing our one-to-one counselling and wellbeing coaching sessions, including a very large number of employees feeling anxious about issues related to the cost of living crisis. “It is imperative that workplaces train their managers to be able to have supportive conversations with team members who are struggling, as many are at the moment with financial strains.
It’s Time to Talk
2nd of February is “Time to Talk Day” in the United Kingdom. This awareness day focuses attention on mental health, one of the most pressing issues for organisations in 2023. However, the need to create an open environment for employees to talk about mental health must be balanced with psychological safety, meaning support that helps rather than hinders and gives those offering support clear boundaries and guidelines. This balancing act is something that many companies struggle with.
How to Cultivate a Workplace Culture of Wellbeing
The last 12 months have been challenging and ongoing uncertainty suggests we need to be especially supportive of our mental health as we head into 2023. Responsible and progressive organisations must help create and environment that supports employee mental wellbeing, both for the good of the individual and the productivity and output of the organisation. This approach coupled with individuals engaging in activities and techniques that promote good mental health offers a firm grounding on which to develop resilient individuals
Can a robust employee experience counteract the quiet quitting trend?
Lou Campbell, co-founder and programmes director of Wellbeing Partners, believes that the phrase '(quiet quitting) is disrespectful to hard-working people that have experienced very difficult times. “This trend labelled quiet quitting comes from a moment in history where people have played a huge role in keeping the economy afloat throughout the pandemic,” Campbell says. “People carried on working long hours dealing with very difficult situations and that has led to a high degree of burnout.”