Is Your Workplace Healthy?

Is Your Workplace Healthy?

Businesses face challenges from numerous angles, and leaders are tasked with understanding and addressing them. Many resources and case studies have helped leaders learn how to deal with things like competitive analysis, gaining market share, employee engagement, cost reduction, and manufacturing efficiencies. But a hidden challenge has made itself more prominent in recent years, and much of it goes unacknowledged by management: the mental illness of employees. Data continues to show that the mental health of an organization’s staff is critical in determining how well an organization functions. Weakened mental health is a silent enemy, and it takes a keen understanding of its nature, causes, and solutions to address it effectively. According to the Johns Hopkins Mental Health in the Workplace Summit, mental illness is the leading cause of disability for U.S adults under the age of 44. Many leaders unknowingly run organizations hampered by employee disability due to mental illness. Some leaders don’t see it, others don’t want to. It is a very real issue that inhibits organizations, yet many in leadership fail to address. But with the proper approach, leaders can effectively help their people recover and maintain their mental health. The Cost of Mental Illness Studies show that people are greatly affected by their work environment. Their experiences, pressures, and failures take a toll, often chipping away at their mental health. As technology accelerates the speed of commerce—and as a result, its demands and shortcomings—a greater percentage of the workforce is squeezed in the vice we call progress. It has become a chronic problem. The World Health Organization posted in a recent publication that worker mental...
Building a Strong Culture

Building a Strong Culture

Some companies prosper and draw the business world’s attention. They continuously grow, innovate and impress. In contrast, others struggle, never breaking through to reach their desired success. The latter must deal with downsizing, financial shortfalls, market-share losses and tarnished reputations. The disparities are glaring. While leaders of prosperous companies garner industry admiration, those who head besieged organizations wonder where they went wrong. They search for explanations as to why their operations haven’t fulfilled their potential. Research in social science and organizational behavior points to a critical quality, one that most directs every company’s future: culture. A strong culture consistently leads to robust performance, while a weak culture suffers ongoing failures. Leaders who discount the importance of culture are apt to bear predictable consequences. They must define, assess and strengthen their organizational culture to thrive. Culture’s Impact Culture is to an organization as personality is to a person. Personality describes how we think, act and respond to the circumstances we face. Similarly, an organization’s culture determines how people act or work, what they believe or stand for and how they respond to pressures and challenges. Every company, without exception, has a culture. Leaders unfamiliar with the concept of corporate culture or organizational behavior are out of touch with the daily workings within their walls. They fail to realize that culture drives: How well (or how poorly) teams function Whether customers’ needs are being met Whether employees’ needs are fulfilled Company health and well-being Future outlook Leadership expert John Coleman describes Six Components of a Great Corporate Culture (Harvard Business Review, May 6, 2013): A unifying vision or mission that fashions...