Leader-led wellbeing – it’s the only right and smart way ahead

By guest contributor Audrey McGibbon, Co-Founder Eek & Sense & Co-Author GLWS

As a 30-year veteran wellbeing and performance coach, an occupational psychologist and an experienced behavioural change professional, my critical eye can’t help but notice there’s a lot of very slick pop psychology out there right now.

I’m torn.

Part of me is probably a wee bit jealous of the clever marketing, and I do love that they get the conversation started and engage people in thinking about their wellbeing.

The bigger part of me worries that they’re putting the proverbial Band-Aid on an unclean, festering wound and hoping it’ll all clear up. (It won’t.)

For some people, a quick little celebrity video on how to improve your sleep, team check-in, 30-minute Q&A on resilience, mindfulness app or delivery of fruit from the boss provides inspiration and/or at least some momentary comfort – but for most people they’re not enough, and for a growing number they are counter-productive, increasing the risk of triggering further decline.

The magnitude and severity of mental health problems are now at least twice as prevalent as they were in pre-pandemic circumstances. In Australia, the prevalence of clinically significant depressive symptoms is running six times higher than that usually found, with an eightfold increase in suicidal ideation.₁

In my view, helping the decision-makers and budget-holders in organisations to prioritise employee wellbeing in ways that will bring proper and lasting change is going to constitute the most important work that people like you and I will do in our entire careers.

Here’s a snippet of my thinking around how we can be more strategic in ‘fixing’ employee wellbeing.

₁ Mental health of people in Australia in the first month of COVID-19 restrictions: a national survey. Fisher et al. Published online: 10 June 2020 in Medical Journal of Australia

To hear more from Audrey on cultivating a wellbeing culture, you can tune into the recording of her recent Q&A blockbuster in The Hub.

Audrey McGibbon, Director Eek & Sense

Audrey is a registered psychologist, researcher, author and speaker with 30 years’ experience of helping leaders reach, maintain and sustain peak performance, and to do so without having to make unacceptable trade-offs with their wellbeing, mental health or personal lives. Audrey has conducted extensive research into the factors that drive leaders’ wellbeing and performance and shares these insights via the Global Leadership Wellbeing Survey (GLWS) which comprehensively measures the multi-dimensional, subjective and dynamic nature of wellbeing.

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/audrey-mcgibbon-psychologist-employee-wellbeing-expert-researcher/

Email: audrey@glwswellbeing.com

Web: https://www.glwswellbeing.com/