Many people feel their employers could do more to support their mental and physical wellbeing, but Millennials are standing up and demanding more. What kind of support should organisations provide and what impact would that have on employees?
- Millennials are demanding more from their employers in terms of wellbeing support
- Millennials are more likely to invest in their whole self
- More than half of millennials are a flight risk due to work-related stress
- 85% are more likely to participate in health programmes if they are personalised
Now more than ever employers need to support their employees on mental health and life quality. As more people work from home, the work/life balance has become a blurred line and we all have a number of new stresses and worries to deal with. Younger generations now have a broader definition of health that includes physical, emotional, financial and social aspects.
A study into Millennials view of workplace wellbeing showed that more than 60% feel that everyone is offered the same resource. If employers provided more relevant support, 85% said they would increase participation in health and wellbeing programs. More than 40% of Millennials say that work stress is having a negative impact on their life. Over 70% believe employers are responsible for helping manage or reduce workplace stress, which highlights the importance of a total all round life quality solution.
Job Satisfaction and Health
A study of 783 young Spanish employees looked at job satisfaction and mental health as indicators of wellbeing at work. They looked to identify four patterns (i.e., satisfied-healthy, unsatisfied-unhealthy, satisfied-unhealthy, and unsatisfied-healthy) and some of their antecedents. The unsatisfied-unhealth pattern was the most frequent (33%).
Compared to previous generations, those born after 1982 are more likely to be in contractual work (such as part-time, temporary or self-employment). They are also more likely to be working fewer hours than they would like and/or overqualified, such as being a graduate in a non-professional or managerial job. Their experience of work may be putting their mental health and wellbeing at greater risk.
Millennials are more likely to leave their jobs within two years, partly due to their increased awareness of their wellbeing and value of work-life balance. Employers that do not provide millennials with an environment to grow will struggle to earn their loyalty. If organisations show that they genuinely care about employee’s wellbeing they are more likely to earn their trust and retain them for a longer period. When employees are satisfied, they will also perform better to achieve the organisations goals and their own goals.
Improving Workplace Wellbeing
It is clear that Millennials in particular expect more from employees than simple perks. There are some benefits companies can offer such as flexible working and unlimited vacations that can have a positive impact, but it is important to look at the whole picture. Employees want an organisation that values their wellbeing and implements more personalised support. Employee wellbeing is linked to employee engagement and productivity so your organisation will only become stronger when you start to make wellbeing a priority.
Encouraging mindfulness with employees can help reduce stress and improve focus. Guided meditation can lead to better sleep, improved metabolism, reduced stress and improved mood and cognition. It is important to look at all aspects of life quality across mental and physical aspects and support staff to improve in each of these areas.
By putting employee life quality at the heart of your strategy you will not only retain your staff for longer but will gain a more productive and engaged workforce.
Abdi, Tariku Ayana, et al. “Four wellbeing patterns and their antecedents in millennials at work.” International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 16.1 (2019): 25.
Thorley, Craig, and W. A. J. Cook. “Flexibility for who? Millennials and mental health in the modern labour market.” (2017).
Mayangdarastri, Sista, and Khanifatul Khusna. “RETAINING MILLENNIALS ENGAGEMENT AND WELLBEING THROUGH CAREER PATH AND DEVELOPMENT.” Journal of Leadership in Organizations 2.1.