‘Wellbeing in the workplace’ should be based on innovative management

Interview with Thomas Cornet, CEO and founder of WITTYFIT

Over the past few years, companies have been focusing on improving conditions in the workplace and consequently are preoccupied with wellbeing at work. They have discovered that their employees’ well-being is closely related to their performance. However, only innovative management strategies can create trust and have a sustainable impact on employee engagement and thus on their productivity. Improving conditions in the workplace is not simply a matter of offering baskets of fruit to employees or providing games for them to have fun during breaks!

We have noticed that companies that implement an innovative management policy have a greater and longer-lasting return on investment in terms of improving performance;.

Assessing the risks

Innovative management can be seen in the implementation of collaborative methods and attitudes. It will, however, only be accepted by employees if it meets their expectations and if they find it useful in their jobs.  You therefore need to understand employees’ expectations and interests.

Today, a solution such as WITTYFIT allows you to assess the social climate and employee expectations according to different criteria. It can be tailored to specific needs and takes the company’s level of maturity into account. It anonymously provides managers with data, allowing them to get a better understanding of their team’s requirements. Thus it can implement actions directly related to what the team needs. WITTYFIT also allows you to collect all the feedback to create an analysis of the general ‘feeling’ in the company. We are working with the CHU in Clermont-Ferrand to create specific questionnaires to pinpoint the issues and identify the different expectations, strong points and problem areas within an organization. This partnership will allow us to strengthen our credibility and ensure that responses remain anonymous.

Developing the manager experience

Social climate surveys are useful when managers’ opinions are taken into account. Managers need to have the desire and drive, after the results have been published, to set up the appropriate action plans and make the right decisions. We have found that, according to our customers, the solution encourages changes in attitude and has helped managers to better accomplish their tasks.  We must therefore make sure they understand that today we can manage differently with tools and methods that have stood the test of time and that allow for better support, dynamics and performance.

A lot has been said about the ‘employee experience’, which places the employee as the focus of the company. In my opinion, before talking about the employee experience, we need to encourage the “manager experience”. Companies must acknowledge that managers have not always been properly trained and prepared to do their jobs. We need to provide them with the ‘facilitating’ tools, resources and organizations. We need to help managers ‘let go’, to steer them away from a role as an inspector to one as a ‘facilitator’.

Encouraging interaction

Shared platforms, such as WITTYFIT, are designed to collect information and provide an indication of general feelings within a company. A voting system is generally set up to allow the teams to decide as a group on the direction to take. The good of the group as a whole is encouraged and we have provided a “toolbox” so that the teams can respond to each other’s ideas, share good practices, give and receive advice and innovate. This type of method encourages employees to play an active role in how their company operates.

In addition, HR departments need people in the field with a grasp of the social climate and who can provide quick and relevant feedback. Using collaborative platforms allows you to be more agile and responsive. Also, methods requiring participation encourage employees to accept change, and change management is no longer solely in the hands of HR.

A new view of wellbeing in the workplace

Wellbeing in the workplace policies are increasingly being viewed as a way to increase productivity and performance. They also tend to make managers more efficient, by reducing turnover within their teams.

Working on wellbeing in the workplace also allows you to strengthen the employer brand and make the company more attractive to its employees. HR departments have changed greatly over the past few years and are open to disciplines such as neuroscience, sociology and nutrition to view people as a whole. They will have to remain one step ahead to attract employees. Digital technology can help them to create new services as part of a constructive, sustainable and pragmatic ‘wellbeing at work’ project.

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