Managing employee health and wellbeing is much broader than just managing sickness absence. There are many factors that impact on our health and wellbeing, including factors such as lifestyle choices and work-life balance.
Though many such choices take place outside of the working environment, many will impact employees at work, e.g. having too little sleep, being overweight, dealing with financial pressures. As a manager you cannot directly influence all the factors which will impact on the health of your staff, however you can create a positive environment in which your employees feel able to discuss some of these issues. This is an important element of supporting health and wellbeing and helping employees to feel valued.
This section deals with the appraisal process and suggests ways that you can broaden the discussion to include wider health and wellbeing issues providing some guidance on how you can do this.
You should use this section if you are supporting managers in having health and well-being discussions in appraisals or if you are a line manager and want to encourage a wider conversation about health and wellbeing in your appraisal meetings.
Your organisation may wish to include some specific questions in appraisal documentation to cover staff health and wellbeing.
A group in the Midlands and East developed questions for use in appraisals which are already being used by some trusts.
Suggested questions, which you may wish to use in your own organisation:
- Are there any barriers to the health and wellbeing of your staff?
- How do you believe your staff are feeling?
- How do you think this is affecting the work of your team?
- How can you work together to support the health and wellbeing of the team more effectively?
- Are you aware of team members that are showing signs of stress? What do you think you can do to assist them?
- Are you aware of the organisation’s health and wellbeing strategy and your role in delivering it?
- Have you assessed the health and wellbeing needs of your team? Do you know who to go to for assistance in doing this?
- Do you have a plan for improving the health and wellbeing of your team and have you shared it with them and discussed how it is to be achieved?
Each of the questions above is designed to begin a dialogue through which line managers can raise issues of concern about health and well-being and work towards answers that can benefit the whole team.