Where do your staff sit?
We all know the challenges for staff in schools and Trusts - workload, recruitment, retention, finances to mention a few. Yet the level of global staff engagement across all sectors, including education, is just 15% (Gallup ‘State of the Global Workplace Report). It isn't just schools that are having problems, though we know teaching is in the top 3 most stressful occupations.
Even more worrying is the figure of 18%. That’s the percentage of staff who are actively disengaged globally.
Why should this concern you?
These staff members spread negativity, monopolise the time of managers and colleagues, and damage your results. I’m sure you know some of them as they hold court at the coffee machine or in the staff room!
This leaves the other two thirds of staff as simply not engaged. They are willingly or grudgingly compliant or even apathetic. They will put in time, but lack energy, passion or fail to give discretionary effort. They are often waiting for the weekend.
Sadly, the news gets even worse, with the UK figures showing just 11% of staff are engaged across sectors and 21% actively disengaged.
Yet the same measure shows that top performing organisations reach 70% staff engagement. Imagine the impact on performance? Internal relationships, staff absence and retention, effectiveness, student feedback, costs, accidents, and of course school results. They all move significantly in the right direction.
What’s going on?
For engagement in schools we can use wellbeing and while many staff will acknowledge the work that is going on in this area, they don’t see enough of it addressing their frustrations. Many Trusts and schools rightly want to support the health of their staff. But providing free fruit, treats, a wellbeing day, mindfulness or resilience training will not reduce stress, improve wellbeing or create an engaged workforce.
These tend to address symptoms rather than causes of poor wellbeing and while they should form part of your long-term Health and Wellbeing strategy, what is really needed is a Wellbeing and Health strategy.
Starting or focusing on any of the above is like building a house and starting with the first and second floors rather than the foundations! See Figure 1: House of Organisational Wellbeing).
Does a day of activities, healthy snacks or a gym workout create a better everyday workplace or employee experience?
It’s why we recommend starting with a narrower focus on employee wellbeing (well-BEE-ing). It’s all about creating the Best Employee Experience.
Start with the foundations
Wellbeing foundations are about your culture and largely cover two key areas:
- The beliefs, attitudes and behaviours of senior leaders and line managers, including their rituals and stories.
- Support systems and processes.
Get these right and do it consistently. This also helps to make a shift from dealing with issues, including mental ill-health, to preventing them.
The biggest impact comes from line managers and their lack of social and soft skills. Making sure they are all aware of and role model those competencies proven to prevent and reduce employee stress and tackling the specific causes of workplace stress should be your starting point.
If you want to know more about these competencies, how your leaders compare to them, where to start in tackling workplace stress and improve wellbeing, then get in touch.
Introducing the Acceleration Academy
Are you interested in:
- A fast track process that helps line managers put staff first and raises student outcomes?
- An evidence backed way to measure staff wellbeing and focus on those things that have the biggest impact in your school?
- Supporting line managers so they understand those behaviours and competencies that have been proven to reduce staff stress and improve their wellbeing and performance?
- Reducing costs and spending more of your stretched budget on the things that matter to you?
Answering yes means the Acceleration Academy is for you. It’s an on-line platform with wellbeing measurement and a growing resource base, designed to make it easier for schools and Trusts to tackle this important area.
You can find out more, register for a free account or invest in an affordable solution.