By Moonsail North
June is #ProfessionalWellnessMonth, a time to celebrate employee well-being and build positive work environments. Professional wellness not only improves employee satisfaction and motivation, but can also attract talent, increase employee retention, and drive organizational success. Check out these tips from #TeamMoonsail’s Administration and Finance Director Nicole Bagwell for balancing wellness in and out of the workplace!
Establish a culture of recognition
Recognizing team members for big and small contributions is essential to strengthening employee relations. Not only can recognition build important bonds through gratitude and appreciation, but it can also motivate and inspire team members in profound ways. It should be intentional, specific, and consistent for maximum impact – changing a general “thanks so much” to a specific “thanks so much for your creativity on this project” can amplify the appreciation.
At Moonsail North, we like to thank our coworkers often, whether it’s with a funny meme over Slack, verbal appreciation in a meeting, or special gifts for birthdays, anniversaries, and other life milestones.
Reflection: How do you thank and appreciate the people in your life? What can you do to show more specific appreciation at work?
Create an atmosphere of inclusion, acceptance, and belonging
Allowing employees to bring their fullest and most authentic selves to work signals that it is a space of psychological safety, support, and acceptance. Bringing the “whole self” to work cultivates connection, trust, and engagement.
At Moonsail North, we spend the first part of our weekly all-team meetings going over bright spots from the week, both personal and professional. Hybrid teams often have to be more intentional about creating space for “water cooler conversations” – ours cover everything from current TV show binge watches, hilarious pet photos, or recent eats we’ve tried. (As a team of foodies, we even had to create a Slack channel dedicated to sharing new recipes!)
Dedicating time to forge personal connections fosters an overall sense of belonging and community. By inviting team members to share their personal life, interests, hobbies, experiences, aspirations, and talents, you open up space to celebrate one another’s individuality and understand each other holistically.
Reflection: What are your team’s water cooler conversations? How can you more intentionally facilitate them?
Understand the multifaceted nature of well-being
Well-being spans more than just career happiness – it involves social, financial, physical, and community well-being. Each of these areas of wellness require attention, care, and proactive responses from employers. This will help employers understand what might be acting as motivation or an obstacle for an employee. In turn, they can tailor a diverse set of solutions and opportunities, which may include professional development and educational opportunities, flex-work arrangements (remote/hybrid work), voluntary benefits, and accommodation (such as disability, religious, and mental health accommodations).
To promote community well-being, #TeamMoonsail members can donate to an organization/cause of their choice on behalf of the agency on their birthday. Employees are also encouraged to volunteer and be active contributors to our communities, and references and resources are provided to connect with those fulfilling opportunities.
Reflection: How do you practice your personal well-being beyond the workplace?
Celebrate the importance of rest
Agency life moves quickly, and it can be difficult to shut off the productivity and creativity of our exciting client projects. However, rest is fundamental to our function. By encouraging both physical breaks (where we step away from the computer to take a walk, grab a coffee, or get lunch), and mental breaks (where we put work-related thoughts aside), we can make invaluable improvements to work-life balance.
Clear work-life boundaries are encouraged and practiced at Moonsail North by utilizing all vacation time, and disconnecting from work devices when out of office. During the work day, it may be helpful to set alarms for several short five-minute breaks from the screen to restore productivity. Some of our team members spend the first half of their lunch breaks eating lunch and the second half on a walk.
Reflection: What’s your favorite way to take a break? How can you improve work-life balance?
What professional wellness practices work best for you in your workplace? Share with us on social media!