The British Safety Council considers wellbeing to be a vital part of any person’s health and that it is significantly influenced by work. And with almost half of UK employees experiencing a mental health problem at work, urgent action is required.
There are different ways to define wellbeing. Professor Dame Carol Black says simply that it is ‘contentment.’ In the context of work, contentment is made up of physical and mental health and, crucially, a sense that the place you work is a good place to be. A place you trust and want to be in.
Various drivers affect wellbeing at work and operate in any sized organisation, including:
- Leadership from those at the top that demonstrates they care about their worker’s wellbeing.
- A Board that considers the wellbeing of their workforce (for those organisations with a Board) as much as the finances.
- Line managers trained in people skills that includes general training in how to spot mental health issues and signpost people for help.
- Involving staff in activities, listening to their views and acting on suggestions are all good ways to build a positive experience of work and enhance wellbeing.
The British Safety Council will be promoting activities and offering training as well as showcasing research and the benefits of wellbeing over the coming months and years. Currently we are:
- Running a poster competition on the topic of wellbeing. Images of wellbeing.
- Offering training in the field of mental health and wellbeing. Mental health awareness training.
- We are a founder partner for Mates in Mind, the charity devoted to tackling mental health issues in the construction industry and beyond.
- Funding research into how work might in the future challenge our wellbeing and a review of literature into what drives wellbeing and its benefits.
- Producing campaign videos and regularly write articles on the topic in Safety Management.
We need to support the staff we’ve got to have good wellbeing and enable them to be a resilient and positive workforce. Our health and productivity depends on it.