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How saying thank you can reduce stress

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The Naters senior center has held the “Friendly Work Space” label since 2013. Employees benefit from flexible working models, appreciation and various health offers.

This is paid content brought to you by Health Promotion Switzerland

At the Naters senior center in Valais, it’s all about balance. proverbial. Because recently there were even slackline courses for the employees. These were part of the health days with the theme “ergonomics and balance”, as Sonja Schwery says. «Ergonomics and balance are not only important for work, but also for leisure time.»

She is alluding to the importance of company health management (BGM), which goes beyond working hours and is intended to guarantee a good work-life balance. This is because the employees are “the most important resource for the company. It is important to take care of them », as emphasized on the website.

That is why the Naters senior center has had the “Friendly Work Space” label from Health Promotion Switzerland since 2013. The basis for this is systematically implemented company health management according to the six quality criteria, which range from company policy to aspects of human resources and work organization to the social responsibility of the label companies.

As part of health management, Sonja Schwery ensures that the employees of the senior citizens’ center remain physically and mentally fit – and that the corresponding offers such as sports, courses on the subject of mental health and events are known and used.

Opportunity to have a say promotes health

Schwery has also been visiting the individual teams regularly since last year. “These are smaller groups of 10 to 15 employees with whom I exchange information. That goes down very well.” In addition, the opportunity to have a say also helps to anchor the importance of health promotion in the teams.

The direct feedback gives her clues as to where the shoe pinches, says Schwery. In addition, WHM is also part of the annual employee appraisals. She attaches great importance to soft skills, says Schwery, for example that employees are given the following: “You are important. Only if you are doing well, the team is doing well too. » Because the shortage of skilled workers in the nursing and housekeeping sector increases the pressure on the employees. Corona has exacerbated the situation.

“Appreciation is important to us”

“Health promotion must be constantly evolving,” she emphasized several times in the interview. She pays attention to the input from the teams. New ideas are also generated at the health circle held every two years, in which employees from all areas take part. “We then follow them up and check what can be implemented, and how and when,” Schwery explains the processes.

The cooperation with Health Promotion Switzerland, but also the opportunity to exchange ideas with other label companies at events such as the annual community event or the label award show Schwery again and again about new possible measures.

In addition to classic offers such as courses, sports promotion or key topics, the senior center also focuses on appreciation. “This is extremely important to us and is also anchored in the mission statement,” she says. Be it flowers for the teams or chocolate for all employees, accompanied by a personal letter with words of thanks.

This is Friendly Work Space

The “Friendly Work Space” label sets the Swiss quality standard for systematically implemented company health management (BGM), which is supported by the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (Seco) and the Federal Office of Public Health (BAG). The label is issued by the Health Promotion Switzerland Foundation, which is supported by the cantons and insurers and has a statutory mandate.

«Systematically implemented company health management is also financially worthwhile for a company due to the preventive effect and measures to quickly reintegrate employees. WHM and especially the label ‘Friendly Work Space’ also have an attractive effect on job seekers, which is an advantage for companies when it comes to recruitment. With Apprentice, Health Promotion Switzerland offers vocational training to promote the mental health of learners,” says Thomas Brändli, Project Manager Communication BGM.

The “Friendly Work Space” label sets the Swiss quality standard for systematically implemented company health management (BGM), which is supported by the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (Seco) and the Federal Office of Public Health (BAG). The label is issued by the Health Promotion Switzerland Foundation, which is supported by the cantons and insurers and has a statutory mandate.

«Systematically implemented company health management is also financially worthwhile for a company due to the preventive effect and measures to quickly reintegrate employees. WHM and especially the label ‘Friendly Work Space’ also have an attractive effect on job seekers, which is an advantage for companies when it comes to recruitment. With Apprentice, Health Promotion Switzerland offers vocational training to promote the mental health of learners,” says Thomas Brändli, Project Manager Communication BGM.

Improving the work-life balance

In view of the fact that 91 percent of the workforce is women, the compatibility of family and career plays a special role. That is why the senior center is particularly flexible when it comes to part-time work and shift models. Even with low workloads, it is possible to select fixed working days. Management positions can also be exercised with a 50 percent workload. A challenge for a 24-hour operation with 160 beds and over 200 employees.

A survey by the canton on the topic “How family-friendly are Valais companies?”, in which they took part, brought new input in this regard, Schwery looks back. This leads to further improvements. That is why it is anchored in the mission statement that “we pay attention to the work-life balance”.

Of course, the trainees also benefit from the measures, and the trainers at the senior center are trained accordingly. In addition, the Valais vocational schools offer a coaching app for young people with the “ready4life” project.

With Apprentice, Health Promotion Switzerland offers a special offer for the healthy development of learners, which is available to vocational trainers. Special attention is paid to the challenges of young people in the transition phase from school to working life. There is also working paper 55 “Young employees – working conditions and health”.

If the staff is doing well, the residents of the senior center also benefit.

High employee satisfaction

As WHM manager, Sonja Schwery reports to the management of the senior center. Health management is managed by the WHM Commission. They exchange information regularly and have to report annually to the Board of Trustees. This also approves the budget for health promotion measures. Whether the effort pays off is measured regularly.

One clue is the absence rate, which is supplemented by the insurance company’s semi-annual report and shows in detail why they were absent, explains Schwery. But she also looks at the feedback from the teams and the participation rate in the health courses.

In addition, the employee survey conducted every two years gives it a good benchmark. “In this way we can see where we stand in a Switzerland-wide comparison of employee satisfaction,” she explains. Thanks in part to the “Friendly Work Space” label, the Naters senior citizens’ center was classified by the employees as a top employer.

Presented by a partner

This post was created on behalf of a client. The content is journalistically prepared and meets Ringier’s quality requirements.

This post was created on behalf of a client. The content is journalistically prepared and meets Ringier’s quality requirements.

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