Show Employees You Care About Their Well-Being. Here are 5 Ways. 'Well-being' isn't just about physical health. It's how employees envision their future, goals, overall outlook and attitude.

By Heather R. Huhman

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When we hear the term "well-being," most of us imagine physical health. But well-being holds a much bigger significance in the workplace -- how employees envision their future, goals, overall outlook and attitude.

Related: Commit to Employee Well-Being and Your Team Will Grow the Company

In the November 2015 Impact of Excellent Employee Well-Being study of 2,363 employees, conducted by the O.C. Tanner Institute, employees rated their life at work at the middle point of a 10-point scale. In five years, they said, they didn't see that well-being improving much.

That's not good: With well-being affecting turnover, performance and the overall health of organizations, it's necessary for employers to begin changing these statistics. Here are five ways to change how your employees view their well-being in the workplace:

1. Improve their social well-being.

Let's face facts: Many employees spend more time with their coworkers than they do with family. So, having a positive attitude toward their role and future at the company has got to weigh heavily on their interactions with fellow employees. Employers who recognize this will actively focus on team-building and establishing healthy coworker relationships.

To do this at your company, plan events around building teamwork skills and communications. Try coordinating monthly planning meetings where employees can brainstorm ideas for the coming months. Designate a chat room where employees feel free to express to one another work and personal issues. Establish a special team-volunteering day.

2. Look to the future.

It's imperative that employees see how their paths can continue within an organization. Offering them a clear visual will motivate them to strive for goals and see possibilities for personal growth.

So, be specific when showing employees their their future at the company is bright and includes them. Use one-on-one meetings to understand each staffer's expectations and goals. Sometimes, it's hard to remember which goals were set, and on what time line; so keep track by utilizing a tool like Workstory, a personal accomplishment journal.

Above all, be transparent so each individual can see what steps need to be accomplished to reach their ultimate goal.

Related: How You Can Improve Employee Engagement (Infographic)

3. Focus in on emotions.

When emotionally drained or stressed, any of us will are going to find it impossible to achieve our highest-quality work. Work-related stress is an enormous factor in mental well-being. Employees who have a natural drive may find it difficult to unwind and take care of that well-being.

Unfortunately, only 63 percent of 828 employees surveyed said they believed that company leaders cared about trying to create a more human workplace focused on employee well-being. The source for this data was The ROI of Recognition In Building a More Human Workplace study released in November 2015 by Globoforce.

Encourage employees to take time for breaks, especially those involving exercise. Relieve pressure by ensuring the organization is properly staffed, and ensure that employees and leaders are on the same page about expectations of goals and hours worked.

4. Offer educational opportunities.

Leaders who provide educational opportunities are showing employees that their goals and future at the company are important. Fifty-five percent of 600 U.S. employees surveyed by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) in November and December 2015 rated opportunities to use their skills and abilities at work as a very important contributor to their job satisfaction.

Give employees a chance to perform at their highest quality and contribute to the betterment of the company. Providing these opportunities will show them that the organization is invested their future.

5. Recognize hard work.

The overall outlook and attitude of employees has a trickle-down effect from leadership. The way leaders interact and acknowledge accomplishments affects the overall well-being of both employees and the company as a whole.

Related: 10 Examples of Companies With Fantastic Cultures

Letting team members know management is aware of their achievements will promote a healthy and positive outlook throughout the organization. Use recognition software to build up employee confidence, and don't forget peer-to-peer recognition.
Heather R. Huhman

Career and Workplace Expert; Founder and President, Come Recommended

Waldorf, Md.-based Heather R. Huhman is a career expert, experienced hiring manager and president of Come Recommended, the PR solution for job search and HR tech companies. She writes about issues impacting the modern workplace.

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