We need to measure the success a nation on its level of wellbeing rather than GDP.
This is the argument from Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, who used a TED talk to emphasise the need for equal pay, childcare and mental health.
“GDP measures the output of all our work,”she said. “But it says nothing about the nature of that work, about whether that work is worthwhile or fulfilling.
“The objective of economic policy should be collective wellbeing.”
The same could be argued about how business success is measured.
Wellbeing policies are measured in terms of productivity, or lost working hours because of employee absence.
Many business owners will be pleased if they see absence levels are falling. But is there an underlying reason for that?
Is there a culture of ‘presenteeism’ within the organisation, where employees are afraid to admit they’re struggling with high workloads and stress?
Looking at mental health in this way fails to address the issue, and only concentrates on how profitable people are.
This only makes people more stressed in time. It’s ultimately unsustainable.
The key to a resilient workforce is skilled leadership and well-designed work.
It’s about being able to communicate well, building trust, and providing measurable, achievable goals.
It’s about employee engagement, giving employees a voice, and then acting on that information.
There are many areas in an organisation where wellbeing strategies can be adopted. But which ones apply to your business?
You can find out with our free workplace wellbeing questionnaire.
Once you’ve taken the five minute quiz, you can start building your Workplace Wellbeing Strategy.