By Karen Moseley

This week, two pieces of guidance were published for employers that are navigating how to equitably manage the new ways we work and mitigate any negative effects they might have on employee well-being. HERO members can now access the proceedings from our Winter Think Tank (March 3-4) on “Changing Boundaries, Changing Benefits: How employee well-being approaches are adapting to the new ways we work.” And a special “journal report” section in the May 19th Wall Street Journal, titled “The New Workplace,” provided insights and tips from a variety of workplace researchers on new approaches to hybrid work.

In addition to personal tips on resumes and onboarding ‘buddies’, the WSJ articles provide concrete takeaways such as the need for “rules of the road—when to be together, how to communicate, and how to respond to emergencies” and the recommendation to assign a “meeting buddy” for remote participants to facilitate connection and close communication gaps. I was pleased to see the obvious, but often forgotten, “ask employees” what they need and value. It’s a key piece of data that will also help to inform efforts to address the social determinants of health impacting employees. And I commend the WSJ authors for connecting to themes of diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging throughout the section, and a central article on “Why Some Minority Employees Prefer To Stay Out of the Office.”

The HERO Winter Think Tank proceedings provide an accessible and concise summary of the two days of expert presentations and member discussions on workplace re-design (referring to both the built environment and the organizational culture), holistic measures for worker well-being, and tips for people managers as “boundary keepers” and how to address workplace conflict in meaningful and supportive ways. Workplace leave policies are a prime target for review and revision now, especially around time off for family, caregiving, and emergency situations. A few of my favorite quotes from this Think Tank:

  • “Change the workplace – not the worker.” ~Lisa Berkman, PhD, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health
  • “If we keep repeating autonomy, we need to get clear on accountability.” ~ Paul Terry, PhD, HERO Senior Fellow
  • “We can’t always choose our reaction; we can choose our response.” ~Cheryl Persigehl, MBA, Organizational Effectiveness Consultant & Executive Coach

I’m grateful to be part of an organization that continues to spot the trends and connect research and practice.

Read the Winter Think Tank Proceedings today!



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