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Empower Employee Wellbeing in the Age of Remote Work

Employee wellbeing


. 5 min read

A lot of good things happened when we decided to continue remote work as a way of life. People could now visualise a life outside of a cubicle, and embraced work locations that allowed them the flexibility to enjoy a work life balance. But workers also migrated from cubicles to kitchen tables, raising concerns that not everyone could manage productivity and a good lifestyle while remote working. Are you someone who’s enjoyed this shift, or have you been missing your office workstations and colleagues? Many tell us it’s a bit of both, and we couldn’t help but agree.

In this article, we aim to understand the problems that remote working presents to us, and see how best we can navigate them in the workplace. 

Remote working hasn’t been all that bad. In fact, it has transformed lifestyles! 

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  1. Goodbye, daily commute! 

No more traffic jams, crowded trains, or hurried dashes to catch the bus. Remote workers have realised that the time saved can now be utilised to sleep in a little more, enjoy that morning cuppa, catch up on the news, read, cook, or just have a relaxed chat with a loved one before logging in to work.

  1. Hello, flexible schedules! 

Remote work has liberated employees from the rigid constraints of the 9-to-5 schedule. Remote workers can tailor their schedules to align with their natural productivity peaks, resulting in improved work-life balance and increased job satisfaction.

  1. Comfort zones for the win!

The traditional office space has given way to a variety of personalised workspaces and remote workers have opted for cosy home offices and transformed their favourite corners at home into impromptu desk setups. The fact that one can be comfortable and work has led to high creative satisfaction and efficiency in many! 

Even when it comes to the wardrobe, the formal attire has been replaced by comfortable clothing thanks to virtual meetings. This relaxed, individualistic approach to dressing has made a lot of us happy, you know it! 

  1. Work-life balance is king!

Remote working made everyone realise how important it was to enjoy a work life that also encouraged personal growth. As the professional world adapted the digital landscape for conducting business, people were made aware of concepts like self-care, boundary setting and balancing work with play. Employees learned to question age-old beliefs that helped them apply these concepts to their lives, and there’s enough research that proves how remote working has had a great impact on work-life balance. 

  1. Talent from all across the globe! 

There are no geographical barriers anymore; teams are spread across cities and countries and suddenly the opportunities for growth have tripled. Employees can choose work opportunities based on skill alignment rather than location, and global collaborations are thriving! 

Remote working has been great, but we still miss those water-cooler conversations and face-to-face interactions. Remote working has also given a window for everyone to take a sneak peak into each other’s personal lives and that may not always be the best thing. Some employees also found it difficult to stay connected, and communication has been stressful for many. So while remote working has helped employees understand the importance of work-life balance and self-care, it has had it’s negative impact too. It has also brought up the concern that not everyone is driven or motivated enough to ace this flexibility. How does one combat this problem, if the majority of employees prefer working remotely? 

Focus on building a work culture that supports everyone, and be the accountability partner for all your employees so that they can look forward to growing with you. Here’s how you can do it- 

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The challenges of remote working 

  1. Blurred boundaries

Not everyone has understood how to maintain boundaries and multitasking has made all the boundaries blur. The lack of a physical commute or a designated workspace has made it challenging for employees to disconnect from work, and over the months it has led to burnout. 

  1. Isolation and loneliness

While working from home can bring you the advantage of staying in your comfort zone, the absence of face-to-face interactions can be harmful for health. In fact the WHO has declared loneliness as a major concern! Social connections have been reduced, and employees have reported feeling isolated, helpless and sometimes retreated further into their shells to deal with this anxiety. 

The uncertainty of the current global situation, coupled with the lack of immediate feedback in a remote setting, has further contributed to heightened levels of stress and anxiety among employees.

  1. Digital fatigue 

With remote work employees are constantly connected. Once you log in at 10am, you’ve got to stay available until the work day ends. All those virtual meetings, screen time and digital communication can get exhausting. The strain on eyes, the sedentary nature of remote work, and the absence of physical movement will eventually impact both physical and mental well-being.

Remote working, and how to take employee wellbeing seriously 

  1. Cultivate connections 

Virtual team building activities are a game-changer, and as a team leader you must learn to prioritise regular check-ins, daily stand ups and virtual gatherings. Encourage open communication and create opportunities for employees to share any experiences that may affect their work. 

  1. Promote maintaining of boundaries 

While everyone’s aware of boundary setting, not everyone sees the relevance or finds it easy to communicate and maintain them. As a team leader you must encourage employees to set clear boundaries between work and personal time. Define working hours, remind them to take breaks, and enable the creation of a dedicated workspace that doesn’t flow into their personal life. Communicate with your employees and guide them on how to maintain the boundaries. 

  1. Prioritise health 

It’s imperative to promote the idea of overall well-being in the workplace. While it’s not always possible to conduct physical activity and exercise classes, you can offer discounts or incentives to employees by tying up with local fitness brands that will help your employees get that movement break! 

Offer resources and support for mental health, including virtual counselling services, workshops on stress management, and access to mindfulness apps. Normalise conversations around mental health to reduce stigma and encourage seeking help when needed.

  1. Encourage breaks 

Promote mini-breaks during the workday! This can be in the form of gentle emails, nudges on a Slack channel, or simply dropping in a message to check in. Download our app Happily and see how it makes work breaks fun with some meditation prompts, breathing exercises or even storytelling. 

  1. Encourage communication 

Transparent communication is a gamechanger! It helps keep uncertainty at bay and provides the reassurance that people need during these times. Keep employees informed about company updates, changes, and future plans. Clearly define expectations and provide regular feedback to create a sense of stability. Communication is how the employees will feel seen and heard! 

  1. Acknowledge

Remote working requires a shift in perspective from viewing employees as mere contributors to acknowledging them as individuals with multifaceted lives. Understanding the unique challenges they face, both professionally and personally, is the first step toward prioritising their well-being.

Acknowledging someone’s work and celebrating the smaller achievements, both personal and professional, will do wonders for boosting the employee morale. Recognize the efforts being put in, share it with the team, contribute through feedback, and build a work culture where employees feel the need to collaborate, not compete. 

A good leader is someone who understands that empathy in today’s professional world is a much-needed quality that contributes to success. Placing employee wellbeing at the heart of business is now a strategic investment. Fostering a culture of health and support is not just beneficial but essential in this evolving professional landscape.

Are you a corporate looking for an employee wellbeing program? Our subscription plans have some answers… Let’s connect! 

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