Boosting your team’s self-esteem through physical activity

Team Exercise - Via Shutterstock - Team building
Team Exercise – Via Shutterstock

Many companies already understand the importance of wellbeing among team members, and they’re seeing a fantastic increase in productivity, creativity and collaboration.

More importantly than any perks, though, the backbone of a happy, engaged team is sincerity. Your policies must be real and tangible, with the team around you embracing the value of wellbeing and seeing it shine through in the values you hold strong as a business, every day. Nurturing wellbeing is good for an organisation’s long­term value ­ it leads to lower attrition, absenteeism, attracts new recruits and has a positive impact on overall company growth goals and GDP.

I believe that if you encourage people from being sedentary to doing some form of activity, it will have an impact not only on the individual and their self­-esteem, but in turn will make them more productive at work, which will naturally have a positive effect on society and GDP.

Encouraging your team to take up physical activity is a great example of this – it’s key to overall wellbeing and gives people the ability to deal with a number of life’s demands.
Research by Exercise Psychologist Dr Sarah Edmunds has shown a direct link between exercise and self­esteem. A brighter outlook is associated with valuable characteristics such as resilience, independence and adaptability, which are all of value to businesses and wider society. Even gaming sensation Pokemon Go has had an unforeseen social benefit, with users saying that it’s helping their mental health and wellbeing by encouraging them to get outside and exercise!

Within the office, there is so much you can do to encourage your team to get outside; walking, cycling, swimming, running and playing team sports have all been proven to improve not just physical health, but job satisfaction as well ­ great news for employers and managers of large teams. We recently held a company game of rounders (with a tasty bbq) to get everyone outside and active in the sunshine and it was a fantastic evening of team bonding.

As with all tasks set in the workplace though, it’s important to remember to set realistic goals and reinforce good performance. Everyone is different and will have their own strength and weaknesses so look to introduce activities, such as running and cycling clubs, for all levels and local charity fun runs that allow people with various levels of abilities to participate.
So embrace the true value of self­esteem and its role in healthy wellbeing. For me, it’s about employers helping their team unlock good feelings; the more people across the team who believe in this, the better positioned the company is to make a measurable difference to society and the economy.

Ultimately, from an employer’s perspective, nurturing wellbeing is good for an organisation’s long-term value. Whether you’re looking at a reduction in absenteeism and attrition, making it attractive for new recruits to join, impacting an organisation’s growth goals ­ or aiming for all three!

Debra Charles is founder and CEO of Novacroft, a Northampton based smartcard technology company. Through their Ucando­it social action reward and recognition programme, they are revolutionising the way the public sector, businesses and charities work together to promote the wellbeing of citizens impact UK GDP.

Novacroft’s thought­paper ‘Building self­esteem and wellbeing through physical activity’, by Dr Sarah Edmunds, Senior Lecturer in Exercise Psychology at the University of Chichester, is available to download now at www.novacroft.com/resources

Inspirational Woman - Debra CharlesAbout the author

Debra Charles is founder and CEO of Novacroft, a Northampton based smartcard technology company. Through their Ucando­it social action reward and recognition programme, they are revolutionising the way the public sector, businesses and charities work together to promote the wellbeing of citizens and impact UK GDP.

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