Reflections on Health, Work and Wellbeing at the Conservative Party Conference
05 October 2011
If we are to create a healthy workforce, we need to identify the structural issue in the organisation that may inhibit this, whether a long hours culture or glass ceiling for women or a bullying management style. This can only be done by carrying out wellbeing audits (e.g. using instruments like ASSET), by training line managers to be more socially sensitive to the needs of their subordinates and by ensuring that we understand fully why people are suffering from stress-related absence and developing absence management policies and procedures based on this understanding. We are in an economic situation now that means there are less people with more work to do, that job insecurity is high leading to a presenteeism culture, and that many manager are managing more by command and control and less by engagement.
These are the issues that we have to tackle in work environments, if we are to enhance the wellbeing of working people and get the kind of productivity we need for the future to be more competitive.
Professor Cary L Cooper is founder of Robertson Cooper and Distinguished Professor of Organisational Psychology and Health at Lancaster University. He recently contributed to The Work Foundation's fringe event at Conservative Party Conference 2011.