Emerging from the pandemic, empathetic companies changed their perception of the workplace and learned how to treat their employees better. Workers, seeing the devastation caused by the virus outbreak, realized how precious and fleeting life is. People decided they couldn’t put up with disrespect, low pay, and capricious dictates like being forced into an office every day after two years of demonstrating that remote work worked.
Large, empathetic companies have intuitively noticed this shift in mindset. These organizations have established new policies and programs to elevate and empower their teams. They pay special attention to the mental health, emotional well-being and happiness of their staff.
The Director of Wellbeing
Frank Giampietro has been appointed Chief Wellness Officer at EY, the leading global accounting, auditing, tax and advisory firm. Indicating the importance of the role, the EY board was involved in creating the inaugural C-suite position. It’s not just a feel-good act. There is a strong business case for creating the position of Director of Wellness.
Leaders recognize that to stay competitive and excel, they must attract, recruit and retain top talent. To do this, they must stand out from their rivals. In an interview with Giampietro and Ginnie Carlier, EY Americas Vice President of Talent, they discussed the move and rationale for the newly created position and what it entails.
Carlier led the charge on the mission to ensure EY is a caring place to work. The goal is to improve and maintain the mental health and well-being of its employees.
It is not an easy task. We live in volatile times. Workers not only have to worry about their jobs, but also have to deal with the effects of geopolitical events, such as the Russian invasion of Ukraine, runaway inflation that dramatically raises the prices of everything from food to gasoline, the devastating school shootings and a politically toxic crisis. climate in the United States where people bicker constantly.
These problems, and other serious ones, are taking their toll. Carlier and Giampietro are working hard to take care of their people in these turbulent times.
Make people happier
Happier workers who feel empowered, respected, and trusted by managers are likely to perform better because they value trust and autonomy. Their positive attitude will help create satisfied customers. This should lead to revenue growth and everyone benefits.
One of the ways to make employees and their families happier is to offer a flexible work style. A person could decide for themselves whether they want in-office, remote, hybrid, or another way of working, depending on what is best for them and their family.
Carlier shared his thoughts on the future of work in a LinkedIn post, writing in light of World Mental Health Day: “Our employees are under increased pressure at home and at work due to the current crisis – health, economic, social, racial and mental. Consequently, our role as an employer has changed. Managing the physical and emotional health and well-being of our employees needs to be at the top of every leadership team’s priority list every day, not just on World Mental Health Day. Companies can and should do more to support the mental health and well-being of not only their employees, but also their employees’ families.
The installation of an empathetic and respected executive leader in this position demonstrates that the company is passionately dedicated to improving and improving the working lives of its more than 312,000 employees in more than 700 offices and 50 country.
How EY takes care of the mental health and emotional well-being of its employees
Giampietro said he had the best job in the business. He will focus on cultivating a climate of caring that holistically addresses the emotional, physical, emotional, financial and social well-being of his team. Prior to this role, he was a leader in people consulting services, talent management and culture transformation.
The accounting, auditing, tax and management consulting firm had been active in this field for a long time. Quite recently, in early 2020, EY launched a $2 billion investment in total rewards for its team members, which involves compensation, bonus programs and wellness benefits.
Highlights of EY’s new programs
The accounting giant is increasing its free mental health counseling and coaching sessions from five to 25 a year. This will include both the worker and their family members. EY’s thought process is that what happens at work is brought home. If you are well treated and taken care of in the office, you are in a good mood, which will improve the attitude of the whole family when you return home. When a family member struggles with unresolved mental health issues, it will likely impact the worker’s state of mind and performance. Proactively focusing on the family and the worker helps improve everyone’s emotional well-being.
The company added to its annual welfare fund from $500 to $1,000 per person. Funds will help cover a wide range of expenses, such as vacations, travel, game consoles, fitness classes, ergonomic home office equipment, meal delivery services and fitness equipment outdoor physics. The company doubled the benefits of child and adult support programs, extended rescue care from 12 days to 24 days, and offered tutoring resources.
The company has implemented the EY working method (WOW). The program gives employees flexibility in where and how they want to work. EY WOW encourages teams to collaborate to formulate what combinations of remote and in-person interactions, as well as team-building exercises, work best.
To create more conviviality and connections, the company launched the EY WOW transition fund. It encourages leaders to actively engage with their teams and reimburses all expenses related to hybrid team building activities, such as travel, dependents and pet care.
The well-being index
EY tests a well-being index. By analyzing data from new programs and policies, the company can gain insight into what is working and determine if it is achieving its goal of improving employee well-being. The results will help indicate if changes need to be made or if interventions are warranted to help people in different ways.
As companies begin to implement hiring freezes, layoffs, a slowing economy and a declining stock market, pandemic fears are coming to mind. By instituting a progressive wellness program, he will help people cope and thrive, despite uncertainty and turbulence.