- Poonam Dhanavati – Head HR Software Division Stellantis (IAP and China)
- Chanchal Chandiok – HR Director at NEC Software Solutions (India)
- Vivek Balokhra (He/Him/His) – Senior Manager – Sunlife
- Biresh Ranjan Das – Head HR- Indorama Ventures Global Business Services
Kavita Alwa – Behavioral and Gallup Strengths, Coach at OSEL Consulting
Employee well-being is important because it directly impacts productivity, retention, and overall performance. Prioritizing well-being creates a positive work environment, improves work-life balance, enhances employee engagement, and fosters collaboration and communication within teams (Grawitch et al., 2006). In today’s context, employee mental well-being is crucial for organizational success, especially during the Covid-19 pandemic. The pandemic has caused increased stress, anxiety, and uncertainty among employees worldwide (Hamouche, 2020).
To support employees, offering coaching can provide a valuable resource for them to navigate challenges and adapt to changes. Coaching offers a safe space for emotional expression, goal exploration, and skill development, promoting resilience, confidence, and motivation. enhance individual and team performance, engagement, and collaboration, recognizing the importance of employee well-being in their organizations.
In recognition of Mental Health Month and the challenges posed by the transition to the new normal of workplaces, a panel discussion was organized. Esteemed advocates from the field of human resources were invited to share their experiences of implementing coaching in their organizations. The focus of the discussion was on employee mental well-being and the pivotal role of coaching in addressing this important aspect. Four experts joined forces to impart their knowledge and insights into navigating the field of employee mental well-being and leveraging coaching to tackle these challenges effectively.
What is employee well-being?
Employee well-being refers to a comprehensive approach that focuses on ensuring employees feel mentally, physically, and emotionally satisfied while also feeling safe in their work environment. It goes beyond mere satisfaction to create a supportive atmosphere where employees feel valued, supported, and able to thrive both personally and professionally. This involves promoting a positive work culture, offering resources for physical and mental health, encouraging a healthy work-life balance, fostering open communication, and prioritizing employee growth. Prioritizing employee well-being leads to increased productivity, engagement, and overall success for both individuals and organizations.
How much does stress, anxiety and burnout affect employees productivity?
Sometimes, individuals may not be aware of the challenges they face regarding their mental well-being. But the decreasing mental health actually creates a domino effect and impacts the life of an individual. It’s important to recognize that mental well-being not only impacts our work life but also our personal life. The pandemic resulted in increased physical distance between team members, now with the virtual offices and the “new normal” becoming the norm. This shift, combined with the pressure of work and the stress it brings, has further exacerbated the difficulties individuals face, leading to burnout and impacting their overall well-being in both professional and personal domains.
How does this disturbed mental state affect the working environment between employees?
The impact on mental health can make it challenging for individuals to concentrate and multitask, despite their intentions. It can lead to self-esteem challenges and strained relationships among employees. Consequently, this significantly affects the overall working environment, as productivity and harmonious collaboration may be compromised. Prioritizing mental health support and fostering a supportive work environment can help alleviate these difficulties and promote a healthier and more productive atmosphere for employees.
What are Organizations doing to address the mental well being of employees?
Organizations can take several steps to address the mental well-being of employees. Firstly, they can conduct anonymous surveys to gather insights into stress levels and employee comfort, enabling them to identify areas of concern. Introducing mindful activities such as Zumba or other wellness classes can promote physical well-being and provide a break from daily stressors. Annual health checkups that include mental health awareness exercises can help employees understand and prioritize their mental well-being. It is beneficial for organizations to appoint mental health counselors or coaches who can provide guidance and support to employees facing challenges. Fostering open communication, collaboration, competency development, and a safe work environment encourages employees to express their thoughts and concerns. By implementing these strategies, organizations can actively prioritize and support employee mental well-being.
How does coaching help in mental well-being?
Coaching is a highly effective and personalized intervention that operates on a one-to-one basis. It offers a confidential space where individuals can explore and develop the right attitude and excitement towards life. By working closely with the coachee, coaching aims to enhance tolerance, resilience, and a solution-driven mindset. The success of coaching depends on the individual’s willingness to open up and engage in the process, ultimately building their capacity for personal growth and development.
How important is it to develop a coaching culture in the organization?
Developing a coaching culture in an organization is crucial for several reasons. Firstly, it creates an environment where individuals feel supported and empowered to reach their full potential. By promoting early intervention and identification of challenges, a coaching culture can address issues proactively and prevent them from escalating. Additionally, it fosters mental health awareness, ensuring that employees’ well-being is prioritized and supported. A coaching culture also enhances employee engagement and productivity, as individuals receive personalized guidance and support to excel in their roles. Moreover, it contributes to the development of managerial and leadership skills, empowering leaders to effectively guide and inspire their teams. Overall, establishing a coaching culture is instrumental in creating a positive and thriving organizational environment.
What is your opinion on ‘Coaching should be available to all the employees and not only restricted to the CXO level’?
“Coaching is unlocking a person’s potential to maximize their own performance.” – Sir John Whitmore
The opinion is that coaching should not be limited to the CXO level but made accessible to all employees within an organization. It is believed that coaching has the potential to unlock the performance and potential of individuals at every level. By extending coaching opportunities to all employees, organizations can foster personal and professional growth, enhance overall performance, and drive success. However, it is also important to emphasize that the key lies in how organizations adapt coaching to their specific context and needs. Leaders need to recognize the value of coaching and be willing to provide support and guidance to employees across all levels. By embracing coaching and tailoring it to their unique circumstances, organizations can cultivate a culture of continuous improvement, collaboration, and empowerment, ultimately maximizing the collective potential of their workforce.
Mental well-being and a positive working environment: How deep is the connection?
The connection between mental well-being and a positive working environment is significant and deeply intertwined. A positive workplace is characterized by:
- supportive leadership
- effective workload management
- employees feeling a sense of belonging
It fosters a culture of support where employees feel psychologically safe to share their ideas and concerns. Building strong relationships and social connections at work further contribute to a positive environment. Recognizing and providing feedback on employees’ contributions, as well as promoting work-life balance, are essential elements that reduce mental health challenges. When organizations prioritize creating a positive working environment, they actively contribute to the mental well-being of their employees.
uExcelerate – a Digital Leadership Coaching Platform
uExcelerate, a Digital Leadership Coaching Platform, offers a comprehensive set of solutions to support organizations in building a coaching culture and fostering personalized talent development. Through our SaaS platform, we provide customized and holistic approaches to help organizations scale their coaching initiatives.
Our product offerings include:
- APPRAISE – Coaching Culture Maturity Model: This tool enables organizations to assess their current stage of coaching culture maturity based on our 7C framework. It provides valuable insights to guide the development and implementation of coaching initiatives.
- DISCOVER – Coaching Marketplace: Connect your employees with a diverse pool of experienced and certified external coaches who can cater to specific coaching requirements within your organization. This marketplace allows for personalized coaching engagements.
- SYMPHONY – Coaching Platform: Launch on-demand one-on-one and/or group coaching programs by leveraging internal leaders as coaches and employees as coachees. This platform facilitates effective coaching engagements within your organization.
- PACE – Coaching Programs: We offer a range of coaching programs, including leadership development, DE&I (Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion), mental well-being, and high-performance acceleration. These programs address key areas of growth and development for leaders and employees.
Through PACE, employees have the opportunity to engage in one-on-one coaching sessions with certified coaches who specialize in mental well-being. These coaches provide personalized coaching, support, and strategies to help individuals manage their mental health effectively, build resilience, and develop coping mechanisms.