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HOW TO ENSURE A POSITIVE WORK CULTURE

Noor Anand Chawla

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This year has been tumultuous in many ways. As we enter its last month, we are in a position to better assess the monumental changes it brought upon us. One of the biggest life-altering transformations has been the concept of working from home, or working in reduced numbers with reduced socialisation, and even reduced salaries. Most of these measures have been put in place to safeguard the physical health of employees, but have unfortunately, wreaked havoc on the mental health of people. Hence, ensuring a positive work culture is now more important than ever before.

I recently learned of a company that addressed these grave issues by launching a complete mental wellness offshoot, not just for their employees but for the world at large. Indibni, the parent company of popular online gifting aggregator Indigifts, realised that to sustain its business it would have to do something out of the ordinary. It went digital, increased its sales and consequently began hiring people. Further, to ensure the happiness and well-being of its large employee base, it launched PehlaSukh, a wellness movement with multiple initiatives, through their CSR arm Indifamily Foundation.

The far-sighted and innovative PehlaSukh programme, is known for its 5P’s of Personal, Professional, People, Passion and Purpose. Inspired by this, I have penned 5 ways to ensure a positive work culture in your own work spaces:

1. KEEP THE PERSONAL CONNECTIONS ALIVE

Despite everything being run on digital mode, it is important to nurture personal connections with employees and co-workers. Some of the ways in which Indibni has done this is through the use of vernacular content on their websites, and crafting tailor-made programs for individual needs. There is a significant emphasis on leveraging technology to build relationships.

2. MAINTAIN THE BOUNDARIES OF THE PROFESSIONAL SPACE

While working from home, high stress levels and frequent overtime is fairly common, as the barriers between personal and professional space break down. Efforts should be made to maintain these boundaries by encouraging certain practices, including uploading credible wellness related information on websites and social media pages; being approachable through use of vernacular languages; organising frequent sessions with doctors, scientists and researchers in the mental wellness space; providing access to evidence based holistic health content; and having a smooth helpline to converse with experts.

3. GIVE AMPLE TIME OFF FOR PEOPLE TO REST AND RECUPERATE

Continuing from the previous point, it is essential to encourage proper time off to maintain a work-life balance. This can be encouraged by adopting measures such as no-work weekends or Sundays, adhering to regular office work hours and time off when required. Mental stress often leads to unhealthy eating practices which further cause lifestyle diseases. These can be prevented by taking necessary precautions.

4. ENCOURAGE AND APPLAUD INDIVIDUAL AMBITIONS

The pandemic does not have to be a time for individuals to push their passions and ambitions to a backseat. Through the use of support groups, companies can inculcate healthy habitual changes. They can encourage measures for people to share innovative ideas and plans and offer them an outlet to be heard.

5. PROVIDE ACCESS TO EXPERTS AND PROFESSIONALS

PehlaSukh, in particular, provides access to an ecosystem of medical practitioners, nutritionists, dieticians, entrepreneurs, professionals, corporate executives, health heroes and wellness champions dedicated to a methodology known as ‘CWC—Crack the Wellness Code’ by India Community Center; which embraces an evidence-based lifestyle, diet, wellness practices, preventive care, and technological analytics. Originating in the Silicon Valley across the San Francisco Bay Area, the ICC-CWC has many noteworthy initiatives which include gym services, Sevathons, Yoga, Fitness, Senior and Youth Programmes, etc. 

Apart from the five points I have highlighted above, the Indifamily Foundation’s PehlaSukh programme conducts free Zoom sessions across the country to help people. Their active usage of digital media and local languages to conduct these sessions is highly appreciated by the attendees. They prepare special programmes based on age, social backgrounds, professional associations and other yardsticks to ensure the best possible results.

It is high time that all companies took a leaf out of Indibni’s book and put similar measures in place to ensure a positive and healthy work culture, and the overall well-being of their professional families.

The writer is a lawyer who pens lifestyle articles on her successful blog www.nooranandchawla.com. She can be found on Instagram @nooranandchawla.

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On Monday, Arshad took to Twitter and shared the first official poster of the movie. In the image, he can be seen sporting a turbaned look as he poses with actor Meher Vij. “Really excited to become #BandaSingh for you all. All we need is your blessings,” Arshad captioned the poster.

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Taking to Instagram, Kartik posted a classy picture in which he can be seen holding the clapperboard of the film in a stylish fashion. For the picture, Kartik stands on the glossy, reflective floor of an elegant, white corridor. Adding a crown emoticon, he wrote the caption, “#Shehzada Shuru…”

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