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Posts tagged ‘engagement’

Employee engagement versus employee wellbeing

May 11th, 2012

Heather Johnston


Central to my positive psychology approach to Organisational Development and Coaching, is looking at whether an individual is flourishing in their work and their wider life. By focusing on helping an individual explore their strengths and helping align these with their work there can be a win/win in terms of an individual’s happiness and wellbeing as well as an increase in individual and organisational productivity.

An interesting article, written by Dr Bridget Juniper and promoted by Action for Happiness, about the downfalls of traditional productivity orientated employee engagement measurement, argues the case for employee wellbeing becoming more central in workplace productivity measures and quotes

…the top 10 drivers of employee engagement, identified by Towers Watson – ISR, show that, of 75 possible areas, the one that was rated the most important was the extent to which employees believed that their senior management had a sincere interest in their wellbeing.

The research goes on to ask employees whether or not they think their senior management actually exhibit this behaviour, with only 39% believing this to be the case. By contrast, the second driver relates to employee development, which is more often associated with conventional engagement measures.

In these times of uncertainty and strain, even more consideration needs to be given to employee wellbeing both for the benefit of the individual but also for organisations and society as a whole. By creating leadership strategies and working practices that help to enhance wellbeing, we will be helping all of us to remain resourceful, happy, healthy and productive.



OD- happy, healthy and productive workplaces


Research shows that developing a supportive organisational culture is as important if more than important than just focusing on individual employee interventions e.g. health and wellbeing days and training.

As part of our Organisational Development offering we will work with you to think about the wider culture that your Leadership, Management and people policies and practices create within your organisation. Through a consultancy approach, informed by wellbeing and staff survey metrics, we will look to help inform your wider people, health and wellbeing strategies, considering the lifecycle of where you are as an organisation; the natural lifecycle of employees within the organisation and the different evidence based elements that combine to create flourishing organisations.

Consideration will be taken of how ‘joined up’ your approach is, its sustainability, employee happiness, organisational culture, structure, policies and context and the impact of external influences and growth. Through taking a stock check of current practices we can work together to think about how this influences employee engagement within the organisation and work with you to build on best practices to support your organisation’s and individual’s positive future growth and wellbeing. Some of the work that I provide includes

  • Top team strategy workshops and team awaydays/retreats tailored to team needs
  • Review and/or writing people strategy
  • Writing a tailored wellbeing strategy
  • Working closely with your inhouse or other consultants to provide joined up people practices that are aligned to company values and culture and have staff wellbeing at their heart
  • Tailored workshops and facilitated sessions around eliciting company values and business strategy
  • Tailored workshops and online learning focused around healthy management and employee wellbeing
  • Team wellbeing reviews and specialist people reviews to provide objective feedback to inform your action planning and strategies
  • One to one coaching
  • Strengths based learning interventions
  • Mindfulness

Case studies

Perrywood-LogoI have been working for 18 months with Perrywood and award winning family run garden centre based in Essex and Suffolk . They have grown considerably with their success and needed help in crystallising their people strategy, finalising their values and implementing an approach to support staff wellbeing. The work started with running a happiness at work survey to establish key areas of focus and then writing and implementing a people strategy as well as a wellbeing strategy. We have taken an iterative holistic approach that looks at both the structure, policies and processes as well as culture, L&D, staff feedback and involvement as well as establishing partnerships with occupational health and EAP providers.

mind.logo.blueI have worked with two branches of mind on looking at their own staff happiness at work through an all staff  evidence based happiness survey. After completing the survey I then debriefed the results to the top teams and also to staff. Both organisations then used the results of these surveys to inform their people strategy going forward.


pmi-logoI worked with the Pensions Management Institute to design and facilitate a whole organisation business planning and values day ahead of the introduction of auto enrolment. These types of days are a great way of bringing teams together, to gather views of everyone on organisational strategy and values so that people feel included and heard. My approach is to add a bit of creativity in the mix so you won’t see hours of powerpoint slides!