The Power of Community: How Employee Wellbeing Programs Foster Connection and Support
HR leaders know that employee stress and burnout are increasingly recognized as serious issues that can have significant negative impacts on both employees and organizations. While many organizations have implemented well-being programs to address these issues, some of these programs fall short of addressing a key factor in employee well-being: the power of community.
Fostering a sense of community can play a crucial role in mitigating employee stress and burnout. Research has shown that social support is linked to better mental health, increased productivity, and lower rates of absenteeism.
The NIH defines social support as “a relationship or social interaction that includes providing assistance and care to parties and forming a caring relationship between individuals or groups. Providing information is also part of social support and refers to counseling and guidance within the workplace to address increased demands and stress at work.”
By fostering a community of connection and support among employees, well-being programs can help create a healthy workplace culture that benefits employees by reducing stress and burnout and makes them feel supported.
So, how can organizations harness the power of community in their well-being programs? Here are some key steps:
Create Opportunities for Connection
Well-being programs should prioritize creating opportunities for employees to connect and support each other regularly. This can include things like in-person or virtual team-building activities and social events as well as peer support groups. Another option is personalized, live support with an expert on hundreds of topics available at their fingertips. This is possible with Bundle.
Bundle is an all-in-one employee well-being and development solution designed to support your employees with a customized, holistic approach whenever and wherever they are. We offer live, interactive sessions 1:1, in a team setting, and for the whole family.
Having Bundle as a resource to meet the unique needs of your employees can significantly reduce stress and create space for community building within your company.
By providing these opportunities for connection, organizations can help employees build relationships and feel more supported in their work environment.
Encourage Employee Participation
It's important to encourage employees to participate in well-being and community-building initiatives. This can involve making sure employees are aware of these initiatives, finding creative ways to get them involved, and creating a culture where participation is valued. By encouraging participation, organizations can help create a sense of ownership and buy-in among employees, which can strengthen the overall community.
Foster Communication and Feedback
Communication and feedback are key to building a strong community. Organizations should provide channels for employees to communicate with each other and provide feedback on community-building initiatives. This can involve things like one-on-one meetings for the sole purpose of connecting or an internal social media platform where employees can connect and share information. By fostering communication and feedback, organizations can ensure that their community-building initiatives are meeting the needs of employees, contributing to their wellbeing and making adjustments as needed.
Lead by Example
Leadership plays a crucial role in fostering a culture of community and support. Leaders should model the behavior they want to see in their employees, by participating in community-building initiatives and creating an environment where employees feel comfortable and safe reaching out for support. When leaders lead by example, they can help create a workplace where community and support are valued and prioritized.
Evaluate and Refine Community-Building Initiatives
Finally, it's important to evaluate and refine community-building initiatives on an ongoing basis. Organizations should regularly assess the impact of these initiatives on employee well-being and adjust as their needs evolve. This can involve gathering feedback from employees, tracking engagement rates, and making changes to initiatives that aren't meeting their intended goals.
With Bundle, we are regularly adding new sessions for teams or individuals to meet the unique needs of your employees so that they have a resource available to them whenever and wherever they are.
By regularly evaluating and refining community-building initiatives, organizations can ensure that they are effectively harnessing the power of community to support employee well-being.
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