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Corporate Wellbeing: “No Longer A Band-Aid But A Clear Focus”

Corporate Wellbeing

If corona has taught us one thing, it is that people’s resilience is not infinite. The number of people off work with a long-term illness has never been this high. Belgium alone counts 450,000 and the number keeps rising. It is crucial that companies focus on corporate wellbeing more than ever before. Three businesses under the umbrella of Golazo, Energy Lab, Better Minds at Work and Peak4, are joining forces to support companies in their search for greater wellbeing for their employees.

Ked Klein Titel
This radical change in the future way of working creates extra mental strain, which requires more agility, so you better make sure that wellbeing has been finetunedElke Geraerts - CEO Better Minds at Work

“Until very recently, many companies only felt any urgency to deal with wellbeing when there were a couple of cases of burn-out. This has now changed. Companies no longer see investing in wellbeing as a band-aid. They are keen to look ahead and pay more attention to caring for their employees”, says Elke Geraerts, CEO of Better Minds at Work. “This radical change in the future way of working creates extra mental strain, which requires more agility, so you better make sure that wellbeing has been finetuned. The hybrid context of work is very demanding for employees. Working from home is not friendly on the brain. A lack of recuperation, numerous back-to-back video meetings. Stress and burn-outs are on the rise. 

We have to make a fresh start, a complete reset post-corona. Many employers understand this. We too have adapted what we can offer. We are now providing workshops, keynotes and webinars dealing with hybrid work: how can you stay more focused at home, how can you manage your people remotely, how do you keep your team motivated remotely. What we have noticed is that we have to work more on an individual level, more coaching. We need to look at what someone’s specific role can be, what that individual’s dynamic is, we are more made to measure than before.”

Kristof De Smet, CEO of Energy Lab: “It is fighting a running battle. We started fighting a long time ago. Resolving issues and going for resilience. Now, businesses are turning to us more and more  because they want to know how they can adjust the constant stream so that their employees’ bucket does not overflow anymore. In the past, companies already used to say that they were people-centric, but corona has emphasised once again the added value that people bring to their company. Wellbeing has stopped being a corporate value on a poster on the wall and is now a true value that is of paramount importance.

The employers that were attractive in the past are not the same anymore. The crux is not whether you get a laptop or a car. Committing to better wellbeing for your employees, is now more than ever an important carrot for attracting new talentDirk Loots - CEO Peak4

Dirk Loots, co-founder of Peak4 describes it as follows: “The employers that were attractive in the past are not the same anymore. The crux is not whether you get a laptop or a car. Committing to  better wellbeing for your employees, is now more than ever an important carrot for attracting new talent. If a company does not do that, they are doomed. The first question applicants ask from a potential employer is: ‘You do not work with a system of set holidays, do you?' Or: ‘How many days a week can I work from home?’ In this narrative there is no divide between wellbeing at work and at home. We are striving for a world in which optimum wellbeing and high performances go hand in hand.” 

Kristof De Smet agrees: “It is no longer a nice to have but a must-have. There has to be a balance. Wellbeing is linked to energy on all levels: be it physical, emotional and mental. That is also why it is so worthwhile for our three companies to work together more closely. We each have our own strengths. By combining 30 years of expertise, we can support business even better. Energy Lab has a stronger footing in the world of sport and exercise, but the desire to connect that with mental and emotional aspects is constantly growing. The alliance with Better Minds at Work and Peak4 is so interesting because they are active in those other areas. Moreover, there is a great need among companies that have been taking well-intentioned, ad hoc initiatives until now to integrate those in one big goal. This is not empty talk anymore. Connecting the dots. Linking initiatives. And making that policy measurable.”

E2021 0312 Energy Model Tekengebied 1
Our own model, in which the three energy domains are connected

"That's why we started thinking about our own model, in which the three energy domains are connected, both on an individual and organisational, and social level. At the core of your wellbeing lies your purpose, your passion, surrounded by your mental, physical and emotional energy levels, which should be connected and in balance. Only when these energy levels are optimal will you be able to flourish fully and project that within your company and your environment. We believe in this human energy and purpose, which is what makes our companies and society move. We are currently also working on refining our own offering: how can we integrate the various energy domains even more fully into the programmes we offer."

“The workplace is built up of many different generations, and each of them has a different concept of what wellbeing is for them”, says Dirk Loots. “Managing has shifted from command and control to connecting people and steering groups in a different direction. If there is a lot of absenteeism, you need to take a candid look at your leadership. Leaders who are hidden away somewhere high up in the business structure and never show their faces on the shopfloor will have limited impact.”

This is not about return on investment, but about value on investment, it comes from the conviction that wellbeing and performance go hand in handKristof De Smet - CEO Energy Lab

Kristof De Smet concludes: “Some studies state that for every Euro you spend on wellbeing, you get rewarded 4 to 8 times. But it is important to not just look at the figures, you should do this because you firmly believe that people are the capital of your business. This is not about return on investment, but about value on investment, it comes from the conviction that wellbeing and performance go hand in hand. Investing in wellbeing is no longer a separate HR project, but has to be a central focus on the agenda. Otherwise there is no sustainable future for your business.”

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