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Healthy mind, healthy body: AV & wellbeing

Following Covid, wellbeing has never been more relevant to employees and their employers, with awareness of its importance front and centre. Installation pulls together a monster of a roundtable to investigate

With World Wellbeing Week taking place during 27 June – 1 July, and mental health and wellbeing in even sharper focus as we all regroup after Covid – just as inflation soars (in the UK at least) and the world watches as war wages in Europe once again – we thought it was an apposite opportunity to ask the AV industry what it was doing to protect the health and wellbeing of its staff. Our extensive roundtable includes commentaries from 21 companies – and it makes for encouraging reading: if our group is representative of the industry as a whole, then wellbeing isn’t being taken lightly in AV circles. 

Wellbeing is a broad term that is both physical and mental, and can be broken down into someone’s physical, mental, medical, emotional and social health. It is more than just getting fit and healthy though. It is about individuals finding out what is important: their values and living life by them.

The Covid acceleration of the WFH revolution could, perhaps paradoxically, lead to a reduction in workers’ wellbeing. Many home workers are actually more stressed, mostly due to feeling guilty about taking breaks and also working longer than they should. Indeed, as has been reported, some employers are taking advantage of this. So whilst WFH has it’s obvious benefits – mainly reduced stress as a result of there not being a daily compute – other factors are at play, including poor diet and a lack of physical activity. In addition, there’s the added potential stress of increased bills, particularly during the winter months when home workers have to shoulder increased energy bills. 

As James Cooper, managing director of Flipside, professional lighting and sound systems integrators, told us: “[wellbeing is] being empowered to leave work at the door and prioritise your own physical and mental health over work.” But, of course, it isn’t easy to leave your work at the door when work is inside your house!

Encouragingly, BenQ managing director Royce Lye concedes: “As responsible leaders, we need to be mindful of the implications of the ‘always available’ culture… [as a result of] a hybrid working culture, where people are spending more time working from home, the lines between the working day and leisure time have become increasingly blurred.”

And Javier Barrera, managing director of LDA Audio Tech, is keen – like many of the companies in our roundtable – to confirm that his company was looking after the ergonomic health of its workers

“All our workers have access to the furniture and equipment necessary to carry out their work, regardless of their location,” he says. “We attend to any specific need and look for the best solutions to ensure that each member of the team can work comfortably and without material limitations.”

Ultimately, employees are responsible for their own wellbeing, but employers need to be place its importance front and centre, and – if they want to retain and recruit the best staff – make serious inroads to make it part of company policy. Generation Z won’t just demand the best tech and flexible working policies; they’ll be expecting baked-in wellbeing programmes too. Otherwise they’ll simply vote with their feet – or more likely fingers via a resignation email. 

Read on for an idea how AV is faring…   

Roundtable participants:

Art Walker [AW], CEO, Auton Motorized Systems

Javier Barrera [JB], managing director, LDA Audio Tech

Petra van Meeuwen [PVM], director of marketing and public relations at TIG

Isabelle De Wulf [IDW], director talent & organisational development, Barco

Royce Lye [RL], managing director, BenQ

Bob Michaels [BM], CEO, ZeeVee, Inc

Bryan Meszaros [BMes], CEO & founder, OpenEye Global

Marc Risby [MR], managing director, DigiBox

Ed Morgan (EM), CEO, DisplayNote

Jo Lawrence [JL], HR director, Exertis UK

James Cooper [JC], managing director, Flipside

Nancy Knowlton [NK], CEO, Nureva 

Magdalena Schönhuth [MS], head of people at HOLOPLOT GmåbH

Jeff May [JM], UK sales director at Konftel

Jim Wallis [JW], head of UKI market, Promethean

Samantha Buchanan [SB], marketing manager, Wyrestorm

Vangelis Mihalopoulos [VM], CEO & co-founder, Yodeck

Ben Thomson [BT], Communications manager, Midwich

Hannah Sharma [HS], sales & marketing director, TwistedPair Ltd

Antonio Cannata [AC], co-founder & strategy director, Red Raion

Andrzej Cebrat [ACeb], Blaupunkt

What does wellbeing mean to your business?

AW: “The reality is that life, not just work, happens between 8-5. For Auton, wellbeing is about maintaining that balance so our employees can be their best selves at work and at home because they are interdependent. We support this balance in a variety of ways: the option to work remotely as needed, company sponsored breakfasts and lunches, and recently introduced four-day work weeks.” 

JB “The wellbeing of each and every one of the people who work in LDA Audio Tech is key to achieving business objectives because it directly affects productivity. Each member of the team is important and as long as they feel good, they will transmit these good vibes both to their colleagues and to our clients.”

PVM “Wellbeing to our business means getting the best out of your people by encouraging their strengths and steering their best skills to fit their career. You want to have a workplace where people are happy and have a great level of freedom to achieve the desired results and their best potential. You also need to make sure you keep the communication lines open so you can pick up concerns or issues from your employees. Transparency is key. Wellbeing encourages motivation and is key in any organisation.

Barco energy session

IDW “Wellbeing at work means that the work our employees have to do and our workplace is safe, healthy, engaging and enriching. Investing in wellbeing is making sure our employees have the tools and the means to develop themselves, connect with each other, be at their best, are able to grow and continuously develop. We see wellbeing is part of sustainable employability. We invest in sustainable employability by creating the right conditions for our employees to have an engaging, enriching and healthy career at Barco. We do this by encouraging our people to learn and develop themselves and by ensuring a healthy working environment – both physically and mentally.”

RL “As a business, we believe that wellbeing must be led from a person-centred approach, however the opportunities and barriers for monitoring that wellbeing have definitely seen a drastic shift in the past few years. 

“Unlike many of the technologies we produce, our employees aren’t designed to run 24/7/365, meaning that the importance of mental wellbeing is something that as a company we regularly assess and develop strategies around.”

BM “Two things. We want to be healthy as a company, which is only possible if our employees—our most valuable asset in continuing our success—remain healthy.”

BMes “We are a small agency with a team of 9 so it’s a family atmosphere, essentially a work life balance. For us the wellbeing of everyone is critical to our organisation as it has an impact on our overall performance. The team’s happiness, safety and security is what I focus on.”

MR “We’re trying to move away from concentrating on physical health as we might have traditionally done, to looking at all aspects that might affect an employee that could include physical health, mental health, happiness, personal development and so on collected under the term wellbeing. In short, if people are well they are healthy, productive and happy which is where we all want to be.” 

EM “For us, wellbeing is that everyone in the team is happy with the work they are doing, they feel valued and respected and they are happy with the balance between work, life and family.”

JL “Ensuring the best possible wellbeing for our people is paramount, and we place great importance on our people being able to ‘bring their true selves to work’. As part of a recent campaign by Mental Health First Aid England, we asked our employees to highlight their personalities; what makes them unique, and how everyone should be celebrated for their individual characteristics. We had a great response and we wholeheartedly foster the ideology that good wellbeing, and being able to be your true self, means that you will inevitably perform better.”

JC “We’d consider wellbeing to be a number of things. Firstly I’d say it’s job satisfaction and feeling like you’re working towards something you care about. Secondly I’d say it’s the presence of healthy boundaries, being empowered to leave work at the door and prioritise your own physical and mental health over work.”

Wellbeing at Yodeck

NK “Well-being is a state of being healthy, mentally and physically. It also includes being happy. It’s about the whole person – the individual, the spouse, the parent, the child, the knowledge worker, the caregiver.

“Staff well-being is at the core of our ability to perform. It means that staff are ready and able to contribute their best, without the burden of debilitating issues that distract and inhibit performance or even attendance.”

MS “Wellbeing at HOLOPLOT is really all about ‘whole health’ support. We do our very best to give our teams access to regular social interaction as well as the tools that they need to make informed personal decisions whether that be physical or mental health-related.”

JM “The mental health and wellbeing of individuals has become more prominent with more awareness and support now available.

“The pandemic brought everything into sharper focus especially when people were all working from home, often isolated with no face-to-face contact with colleagues. HR departments in general are now actively involved in wellbeing to provide greater levels of personal support as well as wider career-driven objectives.

“10-20 years ago it wasn’t as prevalent. Today there’s much more investment in support programmes.  Also, modern offices now have breakout rooms with pool tables for example and more places for people to relax. Yoga and meditation classes are other effective ways forward.”

JW “The wellbeing of our employees is a broad issue that we consider and incorporate into all of our working practices.”

VM “At Yodeck, we take wellbeing really seriously. A balance between work and personal life is the key to happiness and productivity. After all, you can’t blossom in one area while wilting in the other. That’s why we give teams the tools they need to thrive, as well as offer courses and training opportunities that might not be directly linked to their specific position, but helps them explore other areas of interest.”

BT “We recognise that promoting wellbeing can help prevent stress and create positive working environments. In turn, this allows colleagues and the organisation to thrive. Good health and wellbeing can be a core enabler of employee engagement and organisational performance.”

HSCreating an environment to enable our staff to be healthy and happy.”

AC “At Red Raion wellbeing means a stimulating environment that provides the best conditions for employees to thrive and always feel supported.”

ACeb “Wellbeing is about an individual feeling motivated and performing at their best not only in the workplace, but also in their private life. We truly believe that wellbeing should be approached from a holistic perspective by creating a culture of balance that is rooted in mutual trust and respect.”

What wellbeing initiatives does your business have in place?

JB “On the one hand, we want everyone to feel happy and comfortable working here, so we offer flexible hours according to the job position and the possibility of telecommuting. On the other hand, given that wellbeing often depends on interaction with other colleagues, we promote team-building activities as one of the pillars of our company culture.”

IDW “We have different global and local initiatives. On a global scale, in 2021 we organised global workshops and sessions on true connection, enabling employees to connect better with themselves, gain insights in their drivers and in how better to understand and connect with colleagues. On a local level, there are different initiatives. For instance, in headquarters we have an employee assistance program, they provide external psycho-social support where needed. We have a group of wellbeing ambassadors ‘Chief Energising Officers’, organising events on health and wellbeing, … Next to our corporate initiatives, we believe investing in hybrid work & tools is crucial too. As the new ClickShare thought leadership research says that employees are looking for employers that invest in hybrid work as a staggering 1 in 3 considers switching jobs because of issues with hybrid work. Investing in hybrid (policy, office design and tech) consequently means investing in happy employees, also for Barco.”

RL “Through the reliance on technology and the adoption of a hybrid working culture, where people are spending more time working from home, the lines between the working day and leisure time have become increasingly blurred. 

“As responsible leaders, we need to be mindful of the implications of the ‘always available’ culture. At BenQ we put extra emphasis on the wellbeing of our staff, ensuring that it is always at the forefront of our decision making.

“Within our display technologies we have long championed eye-care features such as a TUV certified blue light filter and flicker-free technology in our monitors and displays; meaning that complications related to extended use of monitors – eye fatigue, blurred vision, eye strain and headaches are dramatically reduced.

“Prior to the pandemic, both our corporate and education Interactive display ranges already encompassed a range of health and wellbeing features collectively called Healthcare+. In addition to the eye-care, this includes an air quality sensor, which monitors the amount of CO2 in the room, providing valuable data insight for employees and educators about the quality of the space they’re working in. 

“Air quality has hit the headlines since the pandemic and this feature which was one a ‘nice to have’ is now proving invaluable to many organisations who have been shocked by the readings and able to take instant action to increase ventilation.”

AV tech like Crestron’s AirMedia can help with home working

BM “During the pandemic, we valued internal communications more than ever. I personally called each employee every other week to check in with them during this challenging time. Some people I spoke with as a matter of course on a regular basis — such as our overseas team and salespeople, but, for everyone else, including our assembly and clerical workers and all other departments, they’d get a personal check-in call from me.

“The reason for this is that I wanted to make sure they didn’t feel like they’re out there all alone or only dealing with one or two people within the company over an extended period of time. With 16 months or so out of the office, our employees weren’t communicating as much as they typically would with their colleagues. It was important for me to take the time to answer questions and ask how their day-to-day work was going. I’d also provide updates on how the company was performing, where we were running into some hurdles and how their efforts were critical to overcoming these.”

BMes “We operate as a virtual business, never having an office. Employees have autonomy over their work day, meaning there is no “clock in, clock out times” and they have the freedom and flexibility to complete their tasks. We do not have a sick or vacation time policy in place, instead we rely on transparency giving them the ability to take time when they feel they need it. This allows for them to spend more time with their families. As a group we meet semi-annually to build culture and celebrate our success in the year.”

MR “We have an Employee Assistance Program in place that offers 24/7 access to confidential healthcare and counselling covering a variety of topics including psychotherapists, money management and family counselling.”

EM “We are just really beginning to tackle well being and wellness so at the minute we are currently reaching out to the team to get a baseline of where we’re at. That means understanding answers to questions like

JL “We’re proud to have 18 Mental Health First Aiders (MHFAs) across all of our UK locations to ensure that any colleagues with mental health issues have all the relevant support networks in place. MHFAs volunteer for the role and complete a two-day training session. The MHFAs are not counsellors, psychologists or experts; but simply first responder, non-judgemental listeners, who can signpost services and provide guidance. MHFAs are also trained to spot the early signs and symptoms of mental ill health and encourage individuals to access appropriate professional support or self-help.”

“Our MHFA initiative is part of a wider programme of support in the workplace for Exertis employees. We offer a complimentary Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) through MetLife who provide assistance in a number of areas to help balance everyday life with the requirements of work and home. We also work with Health Assured who provide a number of wellbeing services including a 24/7/365 helpline, up to six face-to-face counselling sessions and access to financial, legal and health support.”

JC “We’re a really social company: we regularly have little outings to the pub after work, celebrate new jobs confirming with a takeaway and have the odd night out together. On top of that we’ve always found personal directions to be a big thing. Whenever we have employee reviews, the bulk of it is talking about their goals and directions in life and how we as a company can help and support them to move in those directions.”

NK “Well-being in our work environment comes from a number of things. They are not initiatives so much as they are fundamentals:

• Having a good role with excellent working conditions (i.e., salary, benefits, supportive teammates, a professional environment)

• Having a caring and professional manager who both challenges and supports staff in their learning and work

• Having an Employee Assistance Program with on-call professionals to support individuals and families to manage issues as they arise

• Having a Flex Spending Account allowing staff to receive financial support for activities and things that matter to them – fitness, education, joining sports team, etc.

• Offering financial support for good at-home furniture to support the right work environment.”

LDA keeps employees happy and rested with karting sessions

PVM “At TIG we are working on internal marketing and HR initiatives in the form of an internal portal where people have been able to talk about themselves, not just relating to their role. The international nature of our business with so many employees in different countries combined with lockdowns meant that some newcomers were never physically introduced to others so we have put in place an internal portal where people post videos about themselves to introduce themselves to their peers. We also have a great transparent HR structure in place where people can always go to. We pride ourselves to continuously improve our communication lines internally to make TIG a happy place to work.”

MS “We have partnerships in place with Nilo Health and Urban Sports Club. On mental wellbeing, in particular, It’s essential that we remove barriers and normalise the conversation. Doing this with a digital platform like Nilo Health fits nicely with our existing approach to agile/hybrid working. The platform is accessible online and gives a safe space for our colleagues to explore subjects of their choosing whether professional or personal through 1-on-1 counselling sessions or clinically-backed online tools.

“As a team we’re always looking to build processes and routines that support wellbeing. During uncertain times like this, we’ve especially found that a mix of weekly company updates and all-hands meetings, social gathering where possible both for the whole company or departmentally, 1-on-1s, and employee surveys have been vital. These may seem like smaller points but when viewed together we believe they provide the basis for a healthy, supportive working culture.”

JW “We have a variety of wellbeing initiatives that come under the umbrella of ‘Ignite’. This includes a dedicated page on our intranet that offers a range of tools, resources, and information to support employees in six dimensions of health and wellbeing: Intellectual, Emotional, Mindfulness, Financial, Occupational, and Physical. 

“In addition to the practical tools, we further support wellbeing with our volunteer programme. This allows employees to take two paid days off to undertake volunteer work, with a cause of their choosing. We also offer all employees a day off for their birthday and a further floating day off to enable the observation of any cultural event.”

VM “We offer our employees a lot of choices that help them keep a healthy lifestyle. From nutritionist sessions to gym and personal training, a day at Yodeck is all about healthy choices and balance. Except for our bodies, we also take care of our minds. For everyone that’s interested, there are foreign language courses, seminars and guest lecturers. The pandemic has made our lives a bit difficult, but we still try to keep the teams bonded and in high spirits. We never miss the opportunity to organise kart racing, an evening at an amusement park or a weekend trip just to unwind.

BT “Providing our colleagues with regular wellbeing initiatives is vitally important. In practical terms, we introduce a new challenge every 3 months which follows a consistent theme. Our current ‘Healthy Body, Healthy Mind’ initiative combines fundraising for our chosen charities, a physical activity challenge, and competition – the overall aim is to have a positive impact of the mental health and physical wellbeing of our colleagues, promote team togetherness, and raise vital funds for our worthwhile charities. 

“We also select national days throughout the year as a vehicle to recognise and support the physical and mental wellbeing of our staff. We invested record levels in 2021 on these initiatives which included mental health awareness day, Employee Appreciation Day, and wellness week.

“It’s worth noting that we have invested significant funds in providing people with private medical insurance (PMI), permanent health insurance and life cover. For our staff to know they can access PMI and be seen by a medical specialist quickly, rather than joining the NHS waiting list, provides peace of mind.  

“We hope our colleagues never need to use these employee benefits, but knowing it’s there, reduces the financial burden and worry.

HSAs a business we offer webinars and information sessions to support our staff with positive wellbeing practices, this includes everything from physical (not just going to the gym but taking walking one-to-ones instead of being sat in a meeting room), mental support (use of apps like Calm, Headspace, etc) to nutritional to educate our staff how to fuel their bodies and minds for the work ahead of them.”

ACeb “Our company sponsors additional health insurance, subsidised gym memberships, meal vouchers, and has a process in place to offer more ergonomic desk solutions, just to name a few. We also encourage our employees to take all their vacation time and allow additional time off for things like continued education, moving houses, or getting married. We find that when our employees feel that their health, wellbeing, and time are respected, they are happier at work.”

Have these been introduced since covid? What was in place before?

JB “We have been building a solid company culture for years, so when covid broke out, these well being measures were already in place. But it is true that as a result of the pandemic and the personal cost that it has had for everyone, we have taken special care to ensure that they are complied with, reinforcing internal communication channels and enabling access to these measures for all members of the organisation.”

IDW “It was already in place before Covid, yet during covid we did some pulse surveys to capture feedback of our employees on how they were feeling and based upon this input, we gave extra attention to initiatives on health and connectedness.”

RL “All of our Healthcare+ initiatives predate the pandemic but a greater importance is being placed on them by end users as we have all become more aware about the importance of preventing the spread of germs.

“We have a germ-resistant display surface built into all our RM, RP and CP Series interactive displays which ensures that the touchscreen surfaces are safe for multiple users to interact with. This specially engineered coating prevents germ cell replication, minimising the risk of spreading pathogens via the display. This is particularly important as touchscreen displays are often overlooked as a potential source of bacteria and viruses, and we have definitely seen an increase in demand for these products throughout the pandemic.

“The need for reassurance around these issues is paramount for us as employees return to places of work. The AV industry has a responsibility to ensure that technology supports this aim of keeping people safe. At BenQ, we’re proud to be at the forefront of that shift for the last 20 years. 

“We offer all of our staff the choice of whether they want to work in an office or remotely, and most staff do a maximum of two days in the office a week. By offering this flexibility to our staff, it allows them to craft a work routine that best suits their styles of working, reducing stress and burnout. We think that it also demonstrates to our employees that we trust them.”

Yodeck doesn’t mess about with staff bonding sessions!

BMes “These have always been in place for us. Covid has not changed how we operate our business.”

MR “Covid has definitely accelerated our plans and I think that one of the few good legacies from this horrendous time will be an increased awareness of wellbeing and mental health in all aspects of our lives.”

EM “Covid has been the mirror that has made us look at ourselves and ask questions like: why are we doing what we are doing, are we making a difference, does anyone care. Before Covid we had nothing in place that you could say was deliberate or intentional when it came to wellbeing.”

JL “Due to the priority that we place on employee wellbeing, these initiatives have been in place pre-covid.”

JC “These have always existed, to be totally honest Covid was somewhat chaotic. We fumbled around for a while as the situation developed. Personally my top priority for the first six months of Covid was making sure people still had a job and could put bread on the table, not easy with the initial uncertainty around support and the fact the CBILS loans were assessed on historic declared profit (speak to any growing small business and they’ll tell you why they tend not to declare profits).”

NK “No, well-being elements have not been introduced since the beginning of Covid. All of the things that we offer pre-date Covid and are part of our perspective on staff well-being.

“During Covid, we have become much more sensitive to how staff are feeling and reacting to their circumstances. We spend time actively listening to what they are telling and asking us.”

PVM “Covid has definitely made us realise that we needed to do more to keep the team spirit going. The first initiative was monthly videos to all staff by the CEO to update them on the business and business initiatives that were taken. These are still in place and are very well received. I think Covid has made us realise the importance of feeling part of something and brought on creative ideas to enhance the team spirit and togetherness which every organisation is.”

MS “Nilo Health was a new addition to our employee initiatives in 2021. The HOLOPLOT team has been scaling up consistently for several years and 2021 was a milestone moment where due to the size of the team, introducing more formal initiatives made complete sense. On top of that, due to working restrictions, the ability to go digital was a must-have. 

“What I can say, is that as a result of Covid, higher prioritisation has been given to smaller departmental gatherings to ensure social interaction remains in line with local restrictions.”

JW “All our wellbeing initiatives were either in place before Covid, or already in the pipeline of wellbeing improvements. So, we are proud to say that wellbeing has always been a priority for us, it was never a reactive response to the challenges created by Covid.”

VM “All of the activities and benefits mentioned above were all in place before the Covid era, and most of them during the pandemic too. We continued our aerobics and yoga sessions via Zoom calls! For now, it’s hard to imagine a world without restrictions and fear of infection, but we definitely plan to keep everything as it is now and introduce even more activities and initiatives in the future.”

BT “These have always been in place; they form part of our working culture at Midwich.”

HSMany of our initiatives have been introduced or heightened as a consequence of Covid as we found people were becoming disengaged with the organisation or adopting routines and work patterns which could cause serious health implications if left unaddressed.”

ACeb “Since the start of the pandemic, we have offered flexible work-from-home solutions. For employees who need to or choose to come to the office, we offer a spacious desk solution for social distancing, company sponsored masks, and company sponsored quick antigen tests. These are all efforts to help individuals feel more comfortable regardless of the location they choose to work.”

The psychological factors that have a negative impact on health and wellbeing are lack of support, isolation, poor social networks, low self-esteem, low perceived power; loss of meaning or purpose; high self-blame/imposter syndrome; abuse – how are you helping your employees with any of these situations?

JB “LDA’s structure has been further strengthened to make teleworking easier and precisely avoid the incidence of these psychological factors that have been greatly worsened during the pandemic. We have equipped ourselves with the best technological tools to make communication with the rest of the team as easy as possible and ensure that remote work results just as well as face-to-face work: use of real-time voice chat, virtual meeting rooms, training for the use of the tools, etc. And since the use of these systems necessarily implies the implementation of adequate control systems, at LDA Audio Tech we have designed them carefully so that they are not intrusive but based on the responsibility of the people and their degree of involvement in the project, in our purpose as a company, which in turn conveys a message that generates more confidence and motivation.”

Working environments are also important. (Image courtesy of Shure)

IDW “As mentioned, we organised different pulse surveys to sense how people were doing and feeling and based upon that, we organised both global and local initiatives to work on well-being, support, breaking isolation, … We believe in bringing employees together in formal and informal settings, both online and live to work on the connection, on networking, … We learned from the pulse surveys, that the Barco employees remained engaged and willing to go the extra mile. Our own ClickShare research unveils that 71% of workers experience stress in hybrid meetings. Which is showing a Hybrid Working Paradox. Many people are happy & productive working hybrid, still they encounter stress & challenges… 80% prefer hybrid over full-time presence at the office, 44% is more productive even.”

RL “We really feel that as business leaders it’s important to make sure that all of our staff are thoroughly supported and don’t feel isolated or work. We encourage staff to communicate and collaborate on projects as much as possible, and ask people to check in with one another using Slack. 

“Throughout the year we have several team activity days, ensuring that all team members have the opportunity to come together and reinforce those colleague relationships. We also try to make training, kick offs and opportunities for get-togethers as regular as possible in the safest possible environments. 

“For us it’s about enabling employees to build friendships, as we know that this has a direct positive outcome on the workplace experience and environment as a whole.”

BM “Our ramped-up company communication was also aimed at making sure people had what they needed to work from home, which was a new experience to many of our employees. It’s not an easy transition. We’re a small company, so it matters that each and every employee is doing their job. These calls helped us make sure that people understood that their individual efforts were still critical to our common success.”

BMes “The “flexible” work environment that we created has helped each employee deal with various situations. We have a culture that is based on open communication where employees can freely express how they are feeling and what they are experiencing.”

MR “Firstly we had to start the conversation with our team to bring wellbeing to the front and centre of our business. We want people to be able to talk, particularly about mental health, and feel that they are in a safe environment to share so that we can help if required. As part of this we trained three staff as mental health first aiders and are running workshops to bring the language and discussion around mental health into the business as a whole. It was very much a new concept for most people!”

EM “While we are just getting started. We are doing a number of things to help with all of the above. Meaning and purpose is a big one – we have always been excellent at promoting what we do externally to customers, prospects, partners but now we promote what we do just as much internally – any feedback from customers and users we make sure to promote that to the teams that make these things happen just to make sure everyone can see the difference they are making to presenters, educators and learners across the world. We meet as an entire team every quarter to ensue that vision, direction is communicated and clear.

“We’ve just rented a villa that anyone in the team can use for remote working, family holiday, or rest and relaxation. Last August we took every Friday off and that worked really well and its something we’ll look at doing again.

“We also use a little bot for Slack that allows anyone in the team note a colleague’s achievements, contributions and appreciate the little things in work life that too often go under the radar. Teams can then turn these karma points into tangible rewards: day off, voucher, new gadgets.”

JL “We’re continually reviewing and updating our initiatives to ensure that Exertis is a great place to work. We’re a DCC business and this means we have the benefit of learning and sharing best practices with other entities across the Exertis Group.

“We’ve previously hosted webinars surrounding men’s mental health, Autism Awareness Week and LGBTQ+ History Month. We also host employee pulse surveys to get regular ‘temperature checks’ of how our people are feeling.”

JC “I think (and hope) that the big focus we place on people’s personal directions answers many of these points. Certainly I feel like everyone at Flipside has no qualms about being extremely open and honest with me or each other about any struggles they may be having both inside and outside work.”

NK “We openly declare that we have an open, inclusive and supportive work environment, allowing staff to be open and direct about how they are feeling and how we can help them succeed. Throughout Covid, we have tried to be creative about activities that engage and support people. Even though we are on WFH orders (and have been for a prolonged period of time), we are sympathetic to staff who feel isolated and crave going into the office.”

PVM “Having the CEO address the people from the beginning has definitely been seen as a positive initiative. It is very important that apart from running a business, a CEO creates transparency and is approachable to everyone, we are human after all).”

BenQ is doing more than most to ensure staff wellbeing is front and centre

MS “We look to provide strong and accessible leadership as well as a culture of open, honest, feedback and communication. Provision of Nilo Health which gives employees the opportunity to address personal topics in a safe environment. We aim to provide regular team lunches, team events and offsites and even have a growing HOLOPLOT band and a football team on the way!

“In the initial periods of lockdown and local restriction we placed a strong emphasis on 1on1 meetings in HOLOPLOT to ensure meaningful interactions and to make sure managers got to know how people in the team really were. This was an essential part of navigating the potential isolation caused by WFH.”

JW “As Promethean is a global company, all employees are well versed in communicating via Microsoft Teams. However, we encourage our managers to connect with their employees on regular basis and organise team sessions. 

“We have quarterly ‘All Hands’ meetings to keep everyone up to date with the business. More recently, our offices are open to a maximum of 30% capacity to ensure that there is a safe environment for employees to come to if they want/need to, whether that be to get out of their house or to connect with colleagues and improve social interactions.”

VM “We have an open door policy when it comes to employees reaching out regarding any challenge they might be facing – personally, professionally or with family members. We also provide philosophy sessions – with a philosopher in residence – where team members can discuss ways of approaching life. In the future we are thinking of partnering with a psychologist to address mental health wellbeing more proactively and in order to offer help to anyone who needs it.”

HS “We have a counselling and mental health support offering provided by our private health scheme which is available to our employees. This offers specific support into many of these areas and is provided by a third party company which offers complete confidentiality to our employees. We’ve had great feedback from this service since it was implemented last year.”

AC “As a company we believe we have a responsibility to help prevent our employees from experiencing negative effects on their health and mental wellbeing from the offset. The company’s values reflect support, inclusion and collaboration and these values are put into practice daily by all levels of leadership across the company. Team leaders are responsible for promoting these values within their teams to help maintain a healthy, balanced and positive working environment.  

“Our HR manager periodically checks in on teams and individuals and is freely available for those who need or would like to discuss their wellbeing.

“Should an employee feel as though they are experiencing negative effects on their wellbeing due to work, we aim at supporting our collaborators in the most appropriate way, for example through a one-on-one with HR or through our health insurance policy.”

ACeb “Our management and HR have always had an open-door policy and work with employees on a case-by-case basis. Our comprehensive health insurance offers affordable options for seeking professional help, which can be done if needed.”

What is in place to help individuals manage their stress?

IDW “We offer support and workshops on how to balance your energy; we provide people leaders with workshops on how to manage remote teams, we have confidents in place in case people want to talk in all confidentiality.”

RL “With the Vitality Programme, each employee is enrolled with an optional membership to HeadSpace, giving access to hundreds of mindfulness and meditation sessions. But one of the most effective practises is arranging regular one-to-one meetings between managers and employees. By encouraging this open, frequent conversation, issues are addressed earlier and staff feel more supported.”

JL “Last year we converted meeting rooms into quiet rooms at two of our UK sites, providing a safe space for colleagues to pray, have a quiet place to think, combat stress and take time out of daily life. 

“To recognise ‘Time to Talk Day’ in 2021, we sent a pack in the post with a biscuit, coffee sachet and tea bag to all of our people and encouraged them to get ‘chat-tea’ to help reduce stress, enhance relationships with colleagues and help end the stigma of mental health issues.

“Also, as part of the support we offer through our Mental Health First Aiders and our Employee Assistance Programme, our people have provision and advice to help deal with stress through those means.”

JC “This can be a very high stress environment, the nature of the work we do means we can face a lot of pressure in the form of clients, tight deadlines etc. I’d say the number one thing in place is the feeling of community and the knowledge that everyone is in it together. People will often jump in to support other teams/people with projects etc.”

​​NK “The Employee Assistance Program offers a great level of support as do other benefits that are available.”

LDA soccer tournament

PVM “All employees have a direct line manager where they can share at any given moment any issues. During lockdown, we also emphasised that home working means more flexible working hours and we encouraged people to go for a walk or do exercise.”

MS “This is where Nilo Health comes in as an app and service that provides mental well-being support for everyone at HOLOPLOT. We think it’s important for employees to engage as much or as little as they like with the support Nilo offers, which includes things like 1-on-1 video sessions with experienced therapists and psychologists, self-guided development tracks for mental wellbeing, and daily meditations. A one size fits all approach to mental health doesn’t work, but being able to offer everything in one place has been great for us. It’s still early days but we’re very happy so far with how the initiative has been utilised.”

JW “We have a global Employee Assistance Programme service that provides advice, guidance, and counselling on a 24/7, free and impartial basis. We also provide tools and resources to assist with practicing mindfulness and improving emotional wellbeing. Through a third-party global wellbeing platform, we provide access to apps such as Calm and Headspace, as well as discounted breaks at Champneys Spas.”

BT “We offer regular coffee mornings hosted by our 11 qualified mental health first aiders. We also encourage all managers the opportunity to become an ‘Everymind Champion’ – The Everymind Champion is an interactive online course that equips our staff with the tools to support themselves and others in the workplace, alongside giving them practical suggestions to improve mental health within the business.

“If a member of staff doesn’t feel comfortable approaching a colleague, or if the individual needs professional help, they can access our Employee Assistance Programme which is a 24-hour confidential service to support them through any of life’s issues or problems.”

VM “We encourage team ping-pong and foosball tournaments so people can let off some steam and have a laugh during breaks.”

HSWe have offered webinars by specialist third party wellbeing consultants on ‘managing stress and anxiety in the workplace’. As leadership we also are encouraged to adopt different styles of working to support different team members with their stress, for example, walking one-to-ones, being in the fresh air or around nature to help reduce stress and anxiety. 

AC “Our team leaders and HR department are available around the clock to discuss stress and work management. Team leaders are responsible for preventing work overload and ensuring a balance for individuals.”

ACeb Above and beyond the fact that we encourage employees to take all their vacation days and encourage them to power down for the day. We also allow employees to take personal health days if needed and allow for medical appointments to be taken.”

Any initiatives in place to help improve physical fitness? 

IDW “In 2021, we organised workshops on physical fitness behind your desk. Those were well attended, in our Norway offices they do a joint workout twice a week virtually – so from wherever you are working.”

RL “We currently have the Vitality Programme in place for all of our employees at BenQ. We felt that this programme was a really good fit for our employees, as it not only gives them the opportunity to understand and improve their overall health and fitness; but also provides rewards for their commitment. 

“We have also extended our lunch break to allow employees to have extra time to stretch their legs, head to the gym or just have a stroll around the local area. We really feel that by putting these initiatives in place we are making it easier for our staff to access healthier choices and as a direct result we have seen employees returning to the desk feeling physically and mental refreshed, and they are more productive.”

BM “We have a gym in our offices and we encourage people to go there and use it. We encourage running and staying active in general.”

EM “Free gym membership and health rewards for being active – eg Apple watch for x activity per month.”

JC “Currently no, though systems integration is a physical job. It would be brilliant to be able to offer things like free fitness memberships, therapies like massage etc. to our employees, but unfortunately we’re not really in a position too since COVID. If the government ever offered support to SMEs for things like this we’d jump on it… but I’m not going to hold my breath.”

NK “Our Flex Spending Account allows people to spend money each quarter on fitness related equipment, memberships and activities. However, people do have more time now in the WFH mode to apply to physical fitness should they so choose.

“No directive or group activity or challenge is in place. We are always very careful to not intrude into people’s personal space and individual choices about how they live their lives.”

PVM “There are at any given time, charity initiatives by individuals in the company that require physical fitness and preparation. We have done group initiatives for Cancer Research and other charities in the past but these had also stopped in lockdown sadly. We keep looking for opportunities!”

Barco distributed breakie when staff were allowed back after lockdown

MS “Urban Fitness is our initiative of choice here. Just as with mental health, offering people a wide range of options to physical health is also important. Urban Fitness provides this by offering users a range of sports activities all across Europe through its app, from Yoga to bouldering, to HITT and more. We’ve been really pleased with the response to this initiative and the opportunities it gives our team.”

JW “Throughout the summer we ran a global ‘Get Moving’ challenge in which over 150 employees took part globally. This resulted in a huge prize draw for all those that took part in some amazing, health-related prizes. Our global wellbeing platform rewards all kinds of physical activity.”

VM “We have a nutritionist and personal trainer who offer one-on-one counselling, and there’s an on-site gym. We also provide healthy snacks, such as fruit, nuts and salads. But, we also organise one cheat day per week to order some junk food and enjoy a juicy burger.

HSWe have a subsidised gym membership provided by the business to encourage our workers to keep fit and healthy. During the pandemic we also offered fitbits to our staff for tracking steps and keeping active so that people didn’t just stay behind a desk for 12 hours but were encouraged to walk and talk or take regular breaks.” 

AC “Our headquarters has a gym which is available for everyone to use for free whenever they would like to.”

ACebWe offer every member of the team subsidies on a gym membership that includes personal training. Employees are encouraged to use this gym membership before work, during breaks, or after hours. We also sponsor our employees’ participation in local runs or marathons, often including 1 companywide event where every employee is offered a place in the same 5k race.”

The WHO has said that this pandemic is going to lead to many chronic illnesses in future due to poor working environments. such as incorrect desk set up, reduction in physical activity as employees feel guilty about taking breaks. How does your business ensure your employees are set up to work safely from home?

JB “All our workers have access to the furniture and equipment necessary to carry out their work, regardless of their location. We attend to any specific need and look for the best solutions to ensure that each member of the team can work comfortably and without material limitations.”

IDW “We provide information on ergonomics (desk set up, …) and physical fitness (taking regular breaks, …). As an employer, we decided not to impose things on the employees (for instance not permitting the sending of emails after working hours) because we are a global company on the one hand and we believe in offering the tools to employees to be self steering in their mental and physical wellbeing. Of course, you need the correct working environment, where people can express their needs and their boundaries.”

RL “As part of our wellbeing we encourage all employees to complete workstation assessments to ensure that their work set up meets their requirements. As previously mentioned we have all extended lunch breaks to make sure that employees make time for physical activity in the day.”

BMes “We provide a stipend for each employee to improve their work at home setup to help with productivity and create a safe and comfortable environment. We have created a culture where each employee has the freedom and flexibility to take a break when needed. There is an understanding and mutual respect to stay on task and respond to emails / messages in a timely manner.”

MR “This is something that we jumped on immediately as we moved more people to home working. We ensured that people had additional monitors, keyboards and mice and suitable desks including standing desks to encourage activity.”  

EM “We’ve made it easier for anyone to get the things they need for day to working – essentially we made a budget available for everyone to get what they need without having to get permissions.”

JC “We made sure our employees had the equipment and setups they needed to perform their duties remotely and safely.”

More LDA Karting fun

NK “We have provided a monthly allowance to staff to spend in whatever way they choose to travel to the office or outfit a home office, have a holiday or engage in fitness pursuits. 

“We also have no negative messaging that is intended to guilt people into working unreasonably long hours or not take a break from work. In fact, we have taken pains to message that staff health and well-being during the pandemic are to be prioritised.”

PVM “All our employees who didn’t have the right set up had a monetary contribution to improve this. They would get the same as in an office environment.”

JW “All employees have access to complete online DSE assessments and can work with our Head of Safety, Health, and Environment to ensure their workspace is suitable.”

VM “We urged our teams to take with them all the equipment they require that was previously part of our on-site setup, so that their comfort is ensured. Business is important but so is mental and physical health. That’s why we suggest to our employees to take breaks off screens, during the working hours. A walk in a nearby park, a 30-minute nap or a family lunch can change your day to day life and boost your productivity.”

BT “We are carrying out regular staff feedback opportunities to ensure that every colleague has the required home setup. Other than supplying a desk, we have duplicated some of our employee’s office setup within the home office space to ensure continuity (for those that choose to do hybrid working). We have also supplied staff with additional equipment for medical reasons – ie, sit-down, stand-up desks.”

HSAll staff conducted a health and safety report of their home working environments and additional equipment was provided to those without suitable home working stations to add second screens, mice, keyboards etc so that best practices could be achieved.”

AC “Red Raion has sent every employee a training programme explaining the best way to work safely from home. The programme includes information such as a correct desk set up to promote good posture and how to ensure a safe working space such as correctly managing electric cables. Also, our collaborators are encouraged to take regular breaks.”

ACeb “We have a more personalised approach with desk setups because ergonomics is not going to be a one-size-fits-all solution. In one example we provided an individual working hybrid with two ergonomic chairs, one for the office and one for their home office. They also were provided with a desk modification that can allow for both a comfortable seated work or it can transform into a standing desk.

“The company also provided monitors, printers, cables, and other desk items as needed for personalised work-at-home set-ups based on associates personalised needs.”

Hybrid working is here to stay. But humans are social creatures and need healthy interactions and relationships with others. What is your business doing to assist in this? How is your business helping new starters build relationships with their colleagues and teams?

AW “Many of our employees work from home a couple days a week, as needed. We have encouraged employees to stay home when they don’t feel 100%, but if they can, they can continue to work remotely so they don’t lose income during that time. We also try to promote camaraderie in the workplace and between our factory and office staff by providing donuts or bagels once a month as well as hosting bimonthly lunches. It’s a great time for everyone to take an extended lunch break while enjoying conversation and a healthy meal together.” 

Barco proves that wellbeing doesn’t require tech!

JB “Our staff is made up of young professionals full of interests, not only professional but also personal. This generates a high level of social interaction that we like to encourage because it greatly improves day-to-day work dynamics. So when we welcome new colleagues who will adopt hybrid work dynamics, we encourage socialising and team building activities inside and outside working hours, to establish those personal ties with the rest of the team that are so important in the long term. Roleplay dynamics, sports competitions and online recreational activities are some examples of what someone who joins LDA Audio Tech can find.”

IDW “New starters are invited to the office (as long as local measures allow it) and receive an extensive onboarding program. This onboarding program consists of both local (face-to-face) and global (online) welcome sessions, eLearnings, etc. They receive a buddy or coach, helping them find their way around the office, getting them in touch with the main stakeholders they need to meet. All of this is set up in order to support each new hire to easily find their way around. Research done by Stanford economist Nicholas Bloom also shows that not all impacts of remote work are positive. He believes creative get-togethers or brainstorms are crucial to grow and stimulate new ideas. To bring back innovation in corporations and development, companies will need to strive for hybrid collaboration that is as intuitive and seamless as face-to-face collaboration.  This research shows that people require physical presence most in these types of meetings: creative brainstorms (31%) and personal conversations (42%). That’s why we’re actively rolling out wireless conferencing in our office meeting rooms to make hybrid meetings seamless (with ClickShare Conference), to enable simple collaboration and stimulate creativity no matter where employees are located. We’re using our own technology to reach out to our employees.”

RL “When there is a new member of the team we also try to get all the staff together for lunch. This really gives employees from all over the business a chance to meet new people and create those vital relationships with their colleagues and teams. Externally we’ve also introduced a meet the team campaign, which focuses on introducing our industry peers to the fantastic people behind the scenes of BenQ.”

BMes “We have our weekly online meetings and occasionally do get together as projects come up in addition to our annual weekend summit.”

MR “As things return to normal we naturally expect people to return to the office in some shape. Our business is very much a people business, trade shows, demos and events make up a large part of what we do and there’s a pent up demand to get back to business as usual.”

EM “We are doing a mix of the physical and virtual, such as making a villa available to anyone that wants it, organising in person events. We had started to organise in person events which paused due to Omicron but we’re now looking at getting up and running again.”

JL “We plan to continue with the hybrid work patterns that we introduced last year, working some days at home and some in the office.  Managers will continue to work with teams locally to maximise collaboration opportunities and to provide work patterns suitable for both the employee and the business. 

“Part of my role is ensuring that managers have the tools they need to get the best out of people, and that we have a strong offering to help our people be the best that they can be. Managers are encouraged to prioritise building relationships as just as much of the onboarding process as training.”

JC “We’re all in the office more days than not. Seeing as our job involves working with equipment both on and off site hybrid working days are in the minority. Also most people here just don’t want to work from home.”

NK “During the tight lockdown periods we have had a collection of social engagements including themed get-togethers over video. When things loosened up a little prior to Christmas, a number of teams connected in person – at least the people who felt comfortable doing so.

“We have a fully built-out onboarding process that welcomes and informs people. Then the team takes new staff under their wing, making sure that they are welcomed as well as supported in their early years.”

PVM “We have started coming together again in the office for meetings and work. We also have an excellent onboarding process in place with great initiatives such as the HR portal where newcomers post videos so their peers can get to know them, albeit from a distance.”

Wyrestorm is big on work-life balance

MS “We have an onboarding process that due to hybrid working is now more important than ever. In addition we are welcoming high numbers of new employees each month. We arrange a series of exciting department walkthroughs where our leadership team give face to face introductions to the HOLOPLOT mission and values. Our weekly team lunches, when possible, continue to be an invaluable opportunity for team members to build social connections.

“Beyond this we offer funding for self-organised team activities. Hybrid working and WFH has been incredibly powerful for us in terms of offering flexibility and ensuring work efficiency. That said we do ensure face to face whenever it can add real value. We have found that nothing quite replaces the energy and excitement of a company All-Hands where we can congregate as a group.”

JM “Hybrid working is here to stay and this brings many advantages such as greater working flexibility and less travel time. Equally it’s important to have a balance too so that people don’t feel isolated a cut-off from colleagues.

“Konftel operates globally and I personally work in the UK where there’s a mix of working from home and being out meeting customers and contacts.

“In Sweden our headquarters have been quite empty with most people working from home. But throughout we held on-line coffee stops at set times (Fika as it is known) so anyone could just join in a conference to say hi or just interact socially. We recently held a special open day where everyone returned for one day to meet up with colleagues they hadn’t seen for a very long time. It was quite emotional. Going forward people will work more in the office and also at home, depending on their roles.

“It is particularly tough for new starters who are based remotely, particularly those new to the job market. Companies need to ensure they reach out to these employees and help them with structure and routines to ensure their days are productive. Education will be a massive requirement with on-line training tools used throughout, but critically companies need to ensure there is a human contact available to help with any questions and queries. Open days at the office should be encouraged, just as we arranged during lockdown.”

JW “Local offices are open to a capacity of 30% to provide a safe space to socialise and work alongside colleagues as and when they wish to do so. New hires are encouraged to start their training in the office to meet people and build relationships.”

VM “We want our new team members to feel welcomed before they even arrive on their first day. That’s why we created a Welcome Box that includes gifts and gadgets that represent what’s important to our company and our team members’ wellbeing, such as a smartwatch and seed bomb. We also include fun stuff, such as a thermos, bluetooth earbuds and more. Moreover, we have established a buddy system, so that any new employee has someone in the same department to rely on for support, guidance and any other questions or concerns they may have. 

“At the same time, we encourage team members to be open about what needs improving and any problems that arise. All managers want to help team members succeed, thrive and most importantly be happy working for us. In order for that to happen, open and honest communication must be actively nurtured, respected and acted upon.”

BT “We have introduced regular ‘All in Days’ whereby all staff work from the office on the same day. On these days we run numerous activities to promote fun, physical activity, togetherness, healthy eating and free merch!!!   

“This is as well as our hybrid working 3-2 policy meaning staff are required to work in the office a minimum of 3 days a week. However, the office remains open for staff to work five days a week if they would like to.     

“For new starters, we have a comprehensive induction programme covering an overview of each department in the business. For this programme, staff are doing this face to face and can then choose to do hybrid working.”

HSWe are currently trialling a hybrid working software to enable better collaboration and ‘water cooler’ moments to incorporate those who are remote. This also eliminates some of the isolation felt by employees during break times, etc when often people eat at their desk and do not interact with their colleagues, peers and friends. The hope is that this also removes some of the barriers of communication which can occur when team members are constantly on the phone and/or zoom calls and brings them back into the business and accessible even when remote.”

AC “We have a flexible hybrid working policy in place at Red Raion, which means that everyone can choose when they would like to work from the office or from home.

“We also have a ‘virtual office’ on a digital platform which includes virtual meeting rooms for work-related activities as well as off-topic channels for things like music. This space is designed to create an atmosphere that encourages people to comfortably share what they would like to and maintain ‘human’ relationships outside of work.”

ACeb “We have always had a Monday morning coffee meeting. A tradition that has moved since the start of the pandemic from the conference table in our office to GoToMeetings. During this time new employees are introduced, team members can discuss their weekend and week ahead. We also have a program in place where new members get time to interact with everyone on their team within the first month. Currently, about half of those meetings occur online, while the other half may still take place in person. We also have options for safe in person meetings or lunches in our office which employees can choose to take advantage of daily.”

Employees are working longer hours than ever before, what is your business doing to ensure good work life balance?

AW “While we acknowledge that employees are working longer hours, we’re just as committed to ensuring they’re maintaining a healthy work-life balance. One happy effect of the pandemic was moving to a four-day work week. We have found that our employees tend to be more productive over four longer days versus five shorter days. Then this gives them a three-day weekend to enjoy.”

IDW “As already mentioned, we are not patronising our employees by deciding for them when and how they can work. As a global company, it is true that there is always someone working… Yet, we believe in providing the tools to employees & in creating a working environment in which employees can have a healthy work-life balance or know where to go to when things are not going well.”

RL “BenQ has worked hard to create a culture where stigma around mental health and wellbeing has been eradicated. A key part of this is encouraging a healthy work-life balance. We ask that employees limit overtime and turn off notifications at the weekends and evenings, whilst also ensuring that they use their allocated holiday time.”

BM “We don’t expect our people to live to work and so we don’t demand a lot of people’s time on weekends or nights. Sure, there are times when weekends or nights are needed to meet a deadline but all in all, we’re pretty flexible. Thankfully, we’re a company of solid professionals with whom we are comfortable giving a high degree of freedom and flexibility. To my knowledge, no one in our company took advantage of this.”

EM “This is an area we hope to formalise in the coming weeks and months once we get a sense of where the team are at when it comes to work-life balance. That’s step number 1 – getting a true picture of what our team really experience and then decide on the steps we need to take and how big those steps should be.”

Barco again proving that wellbeing is an attitide

JL “We are continuing to review our working patterns on an ongoing basis, sharing best practices across teams. An example of a recent wellbeing initiative is that we recently took part in ‘Time to Talk Day,’ where we encouraged our people to take time out of the office, go on a group walk and have a discussion about mental health.”

NK “We offer a large number of vacation days and actively encourage staff to take their vacation days throughout the year. We close the office (and don’t work from home) during the Christmas/New Year’s week, which gives us all a good break. We offer an extra paid day off for the four stat holidays in the summer, which again gives us all a great time away at the same time.”

PVM “We encourage our people to make healthy choices and make time for exercise and outdoor activity. We have some great role models in the company).”

JW “Hybrid working has assisted with supporting work-life balance. Being a global business, it is more and more difficult to align to a 9-5 working day. However, working from home empowers our employees to manage their work and personal time.”

VM “We always make sure that work is challenging but not stressful, rewarding but not exhausting, so that unhealthy business hours just don’t happen. And of course we emphasise the need to log off, unplug and spend time with friends and family as one of our core values.”

HSThe business invested substantially on our office break out space which includes table tennis table and a darts board to encourage banter, relationship building and some healthy competition as well as encouraging longer breaks and a chance to blow off steam. This has been a great initiative for the business and has built a positive balance to the office. There’s still work to be done on the remote personnel as this is harder to measure and manage.”

AC “We are careful to ensure that the amount of work given to an individual is kept to a manageable level. If a team or an employee finds that the amount of work exceeds this level the HR department is committed to supporting them, often this is through recruitment.”

ACeb “We believe that every employee is unique and that there should be a relationship built on respect and trust. We have noticed that some of our employees like to start their workday early, so that they can be home to greet their children when they get home from school. Meanwhile, other employees prefer to work slightly later hours and accomplish some errands before they start work. We believe that this flexibility allows employees to achieve their professional goals.”

With thanks to health and wellbeing champion Rachael Hamilton, AVIXA Women’s Council UK Committee member and founder of I AM RACHAEL, the AV business and marketing consultancy.