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Healthy Workplaces

July 3 2012 - Six key elements of extraordinary organizations around the world were identified recently by the The Health Work & Wellness Group. The group describes itself as a 'dedicated group of organizational health professionals who are passionate about creating a better place to work.'

According to Deborah Connors, the founder of the group:

"The common elements that make organizations extraordinary also future-proof them for economic and demographic changes. The key is engaged and healthy employees who are motivated to help the organization succeed."

Noting that over half of Canadian organizations are interested in improving employee wellbeing and working experience, Deborah Connors said:

"Extraordinary organizations cost less to operate and succeed more often because they have an empowered workforce. "That alone gives them the ability to adapt faster than their competition when there are changes in the marketplace or the economy."

The six elements of an extraordinary organization identified by the group:

  • A Continuous Process - a high priority, ongoing process rather than a race to the finish is required to create a better workplace
  • Linked to Strategic Goals - to be effective, creating a better workplace should be part of overall business strategy rather than a one-off program.
  • Visible Leadership - employees are more likely to help create a better workplace if their leaders provide a positive example.
  • Supportive Culture and Values - people need a culture that truly values and supports their well-being to work at their best.
  • Health Promoting - the most successful organizations create environments that promote positive mental, emotional and physical health rather than solely focusing on preventing illness and managing disability.
  • Fulfilling Relationships - relationships that are trusting and respectful are a significant cornerstone for employee well-being.

Deborah Connors added:

"Creating a better workplace is not a one-size-fits-all situation. Each organization has to approach it differently, but knowing what to strive for to be successful is a good starting place."

The 16th annual Better Workplace Conference takes place in Vancouver, BC from October 16 to 18, 2012 at the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver.

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