By Gary Young, Founder of The Mindful Enterprise
Over the last three or so years since the launch of The Mindful Enterprise, we’ve had the pleasure to work with a number of well-established Scottish and UK businesses to support employee wellbeing agendas, with Bruce Stevenson being among them.
The services have covered a range of topics including mindfulness, stress management, resilience, mental health awareness, and more recently, managing fear, uncertainty, loneliness and isolation.
Whilst there has been a tangible increase in momentum around mental health awareness and a gradual shift in attitudes, my overriding feeling is that many organisations are still only scratching the surface of what needs to be done to truly evolve company culture.
The result is that while more people are talking about mental health, which is great progress in helping to break the stigma, there is still some reluctance to adequately invest in meaningful interventions that can open hearts and strengthen minds. It’s these initiatives that then provide the catalyst for changes to working conditions, greater openness and connection between employees and an increase in psychological safety.
One organisation that have bucked the trend are Bruce Stevenson.
We began working together in 2018 and I’ve been impressed with the commitment the leadership team have made to their people. They have made a range of initiatives available to help create a mentally healthy culture and support staff in their everyday lives inside and outside of the workplace.
Over the last few years, we’ve provided a series of wellbeing and resilience sessions, mindfulness and personal development training with supporting resources, a regular monthly wellbeing hints and tips feature and more recently, a 12-week block of online mindfulness and wellbeing sessions which have been recorded for repeat use.
Mindfulness in particular can be a vehicle for personal transformation and can really bond a team together when delivered in a group setting. The teachings and insights can be profound and provide the tools for individuals to better manage their wellbeing and how they perform. Learning how to deeply listen, develop empathy and a greater level of emotional control are also by-products of an integrated mindfulness practice and these can have a hugely positive influence on team cohesion and culture.
Gary with our Turriff office colleagues
In addition to psychological safety, as mentioned earlier, one of the key indicators for creating a happy, healthy and high performing workforce is when people feel that they can bring their whole selves to work.
Concealing parts of our identity or thinking that we can’t express how we truly feel, in case we may be judged or overlooked for career progression, can be exhausting and burn a lot of energy which in turn can impact our focus and how we behave. Creating training, learning and one-to-one environments that are safe spaces for employees at all levels of the business to share openly is another important step on the journey to creating a mentally healthy culture, and these are environments we’ve been working together to create at Bruce Stevenson.
Evolving culture and making it sustainable takes time; it requires an appropriate level of investment, open-mindedness and commitment from all concerned to evolve individually and collectively.
It is pleasing that Bruce Stevenson have made fantastic strides on their journey and I look forward to following their continued success.
‘As a business, we continue to evolve our mental wellbeing strategy. Throughout this journey, Gary Young’s sessions and mindfulness updates have been a key component.’