Well-being in the workplace: utopia or new deal?

Has corporate well-being become an obligation? It cannot be said, but one only has to look at the many companies that have been created around this theme and the flowering of books and training courses on the subject to tell oneself that it is considered a real challenge for businesses. Trend or fashion effect, we cannot say it even if the consequences of confinement have highlighted new realities which must absolutely be taken into account.

Employees who have been abused for a long time

Well-being in the workplace, a few years ago: we didn’t talk about it and seemed to have little importance. The main thing was the remuneration, the job if it was interesting or rewarding or the position in the hierarchical pyramid. The arrival of new technologies and in particular the Internet has profoundly transformed companies and has had a considerable impact on the payroll and on mentalities. It must be said that the performance of the tools, which have replaced a good number of humans, have led to the mistreatment of employees and their positions being called into question. Many professions, some of which could be proud of thanks to their know-how and experience, have become obsolete and the employees in these positions have repeatedly been put in difficulty. They had to start from scratch and often with redundancy plans that humiliated many of them with inhumane HR policies. The multiple lawsuits, which often took place sometimes for 20 years to finally win, engendered a fear that is the opposite of well-being. According to the Edelman Trust Barometer 2021, 84% of employees feel concerned about losing their job, and 53% are afraid of it. In addition, 56% of respondents are worried about an accelerated replacement of their jobs by artificial intelligence solutions following the pandemic.

The devaluation of repetitive work

In addition, repetitive work has also experienced a devaluation. Most often associated with lower pay, it is above all perceived today as work that does not necessarily require you to solicit your intelligence. However, it often requires a lot of attention because mistakes can be costly and it is common for those who have made a mistake to be singled out by their managers and the departments in which they operate. If in the past, work was valued as such, it must be noted that many now have a real contempt for certain professions. And it must be noted: leaders or colleagues who are sometimes perverse, temperamental or moody have contributed to this consideration. It is clear that the famous “there is no stupid job” took for his rank.

Work now based on skills

Skills have become a reference and the norm, but they add a competitiveness that is often badly experienced. If in the past skills were definitively acquired, today we see a race against time because each skill can be called into question due to innovations, new processes and mean for some… the closet (or a resignation which will not only impact the employee in question but also the whole company). Rumors that are rife sometimes sound like a warning to teams “A good hearer, hello”.
Admittedly, many training courses have been put in place, but from now on the employee must have the desire to train almost permanently. However, the human is not always able to be in this disposition and some employees allow themselves to be overtaken. The training then takes on the appearance of a scarecrow and it is difficult for them to acquire the content under this pressure. It was therefore necessary to propose to take the human into account so as not to put it in a dead end. From this observation and for a little over a decade, companies have been training their managers to lead their teams. They have understood that the productivity of employees depends on benevolence and respect for the dignity of each person’s life. They have therefore become an essential dimension for business success.

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Well-being in the workplace: utopia or new deal?


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