Culture change around engagement and wellbeing starts with leaders and their behaviour. But it is also about individuals taking ownership and responsibility to create a climate that enhances employee mental health for everyone, as Professor Beverly Alimo-Metcalfe explains in Personnel Today's, Occupational Health & Wellbeing Magazine.
So what are the implications for organisations? David Cooperrider, a founding author of the positive psychology movement, says: “Words become worlds.” That is, interventions to shift the dynamics of an organisation to be more innovative, resilient and open to change start, or end, with the language we use. We cannot afford to be complacent. Professor Beverly Alimo-Metcalfe suggests it might be useful to consider for a week or two how people speak around you. Are conversations typically negative in focus? Are expressions of cynicism and pessimism (including non-verbal) acceptable in team meetings and daily interactions? Is there some way that you can challenge and change the dynamic?
Addressing the factors described in this article will increase employee engagement and productivity. Culture change starts with leaders and their behaviour, but each of us shares some responsibility, otherwise we risk creating yet another “band aid” solution that could ultimately reduce, rather than enhance, positive employee mental health. The article is in the print edition of the Magazine and will be online in June.