This is a rhetorical question, but I’ll still give you the short answer. Yes, it does and in a big way. In the past, when corporate health was a topic of discussion, you could be certain that the conversationalists would be talking about the financial state of the business. Money, revenue and profit comprised the collective points of interest that were valued. Mercifully, we are becoming a bit more enlightened and the definition of corporate wellness has broadened to move past currency assets, to embrace the state of the human resource asset as well.
When I think about a business that is “well,” the broadest possible spectrum of categories that goes beyond finance, comes to my mind. I consider the culture, the working conditions, the level of profitability, the level of physical, as well as environmental safety, brand robustness, the state of governance and most of all, the state of the relationship with customers. A business that is “well” would be functioning basically, in a state of holistic health.
Contrary to many an executive opinion, employee wellness is not a luxury item on the list of perquisites. It is a hard item that delivers a formidable return on investment
A big element that adds to the overarching state of health and wellness of a business, is the quality of employee wellness. Contrary to many an executive opinion, employee wellness is not a luxury item on the list of perquisites. It is a hard item that delivers a formidable return on investment. Unfortunately, resistance to acceptance of the idea that there is a hard payoff for investing in employee wellness is high. Why? Because “people” items are associated with the softer side of business and the powers that be, are dismissive of whatever is deemed “soft” in the world of business and accounting.
Nevertheless, as a practitioner in the human and people realm, adopting employee wellness as a business strategy delivers one huge benefit. Employees become psychologically invested in the business and become engaged stakeholders, with a vested interest in helping the business to maximize its performance.
An environment of wellness creates the space for employees to focus on the tasks at hand and to pour energy into doing those tasks well.
Now, while this sounds plausible and enticing enough to be endorsed by even the sceptics, getting to the point of de facto inclusion in the business plan as a fully accepted pillar of operation, takes some work. Because, as we all know, hardwiring is hard to unwire. Through unconscious bias, we’re accustomed to treating people-centred issues as less important than their technical and operational counterparts.
One of the reasons why employee wellness matters is because individuals who cope well with the vicissitudes of life, apply that mindset and skillset to their work. Some individuals are naturally endowed with these skills and therefore, bring them to the table at point of recruitment, whilst others, with the right teaching, tools and coaching, evolve into high performance champions.
When a person’s mind is clear and undistracted by anxiety, fear, worry and tension, he or she has an expanded mental capacity to function with ease. An environment of wellness creates the space for employees to focus on the tasks at hand and to pour energy into doing those tasks well.
Businesses that provision for the well-being for their employees experience fewer disruptive and aggravated episodes during complaint processing and resolution.
Employees who function in a healthy self-state and within a business-state that is equally healthy, possess a higher probability of becoming service excellence champions. The distress associated with toxic or less than ideal working environments is absent and therefore, the employee to employee and the employee to customer interactions are less encumbered.
Businesses that provision for the well-being for their employees experience fewer disruptive and aggravated episodes during complaint processing and resolution. The air is not polluted with backed-up team member tension, that then morphs into tense or aggressive exchanges between employee and customer.
When employee wellness is impaired, atmospheric tension becomes measurable. If a business were to measure the levels of tension in team relationships and compare with the levels of customer complaints, the correlation would be validated. When internal tension is remediated, complaints decline. This has been my experience when working with clients.
The businesses that treat employee wellness as a liability and a humbug become crucibles for dis-ease and discomfort, with customer happiness becoming collateral damage.
So, what’s the takeaway here as we reflect on how employee wellness supports the sustainability of service excellence?
The businesses that treat employee wellness as a liability and a humbug become crucibles for dis-ease and discomfort, with customer happiness becoming collateral damage. Those that provision for it, benefit from the strong statistical link between employee happiness and customer happiness.