Wellbeing in the workplace: Where do I start?

As Mind’s Silver award winner for the Workplace Wellbeing Index 2017/18 and one of Campaign Magazine’s 50 best places to work 2018, to say IAB UK care and continually think about wellbeing in the workplace would be an understatement. With a 30% employee turnover rate within the advertising industry and with 57% of millennials rating work-life balance and well-being in a job as ‘very important’, it’s crucial that companies respect, value and support their staff in any capacity possible.  

On Wednesday 18 July, IAB UK hosted a Wellbeing Seminar which encouraged companies to think more about the wellbeing services they could offer and exactly how wellbeing could benefit business. Happy employees work harder. They’re better able to deal with high pressured situations and come to work more focussed when

We asked our IABeers what they thought of the day and what they’ll be taking away from wellbeing:

‘’Fetch’s Kim Berkin discussed how many social activities within the workplace are based around alcohol and how this can be more detrimental than beneficial. After work drinks aren’t inclusive of pregnant people, those of different religions or diets, those who cycle home and those who simply choose not to drink. There’s a pressure to join and socialise even when it means compromising your comfort zone.

Team building shouldn’t start and end at the pub. If the only way you can socialise with your colleagues outside of work is by having a drink in your hand then perhaps more needs to be done in the workplace to bring you together. Alcohol can often be seen as an incentive and as a large part of the culture particularly within advertising. I hadn’t realised just how many of my previous roles had labelled alcohol as ‘the culture’ and the amount of pressure there is to attend weekly or monthly drinks or else be deemed boring and flaky by workmates’’.

‘’I really want to use my phone less, read more and stick to a better night time routine so I’m not lying awake for hours on end at night.’’

’The thing that surprised me the most was the lack of men in the audience, wellbeing seems to be a topic that women are more comfortable talking about. Jeff Archer from Tonic 365 explained he has to employ very different tactics to engage men in this space. Given the heart-breaking fact that suicide is the biggest killer of men under the age of 45 in the UK, I hope to see more men engaging with wellbeing activities and in attendance next year.’’

‘’A real highlight for me was hearing what the incredible Fetch are doing to support their employee’s wellbeing, in our industry there is a huge focus on pub culture and after work drinks, but as Kim Berkin so eloquently highlighted, this drinking culture isn’t very inclusive. Thus, Fetch have a cross-departmental team called Social ‘18 who plan all of their team activities inside the working day and with alcohol taking a backseat. They also work with the wonderful Sanctus who run a mental health ‘gym’ in their office, if you haven’t heard of Sanctus... definitely check them out. My pledge to myself after this seminar was to meditate every morning.’’

‘’I really enjoyed Erik Roddin from August Public asking the question ‘’If your life was a film, would you watch it?”. He really encouraged everyone to consider their lives and jobs and whether we drift because it’s easier than taking risks to do something we’d enjoy more’’.

If you'd like to learn more about wellbeing, check out these resources from our partner Mind. 

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