Audrey Abbott, an Associate Consultant within our Strategic Transformation and Planning team, introduces our new health and wellbeing initiative and explores our continued work towards a healthy workplace culture.

Health and Wellbeing has become much more of a focus in recent years in both the public and private sectors – and rightly so. In the NHS, healthy staff means better quality and effective care for patients. In our own organisation, this translates to our team being better equipped to manage large-scale and often difficult transformation projects, which will improve services for the public.

Earlier this year we were named 10th in the Sunday Times 100 Best Not-for-Profit Organisations to work for list. We’re very proud of this result and have worked hard to get there; building a strong team culture with hot-desking, flexible working and a focus on training and development.

One of the things that we took from this achievement was a sense of not wanting to become complacent. The hard work does not stop here as improvements can always be made. After a suggestion from a team member to organise in-work health and wellbeing activities, other members of the team took the initiative to organise the first TU Health and Wellbeing week. It’s a testament to our culture that we’re empowered and are given the time to organise something of this scale for our colleagues.

To do this effectively, but with minimal cost, most of the activities we’ve planned are free and will be led by members of the team, giving them an opportunity to share an interest or hobby. The activities planned include mindfulness, a charity quiz, bouldering, board games club, yoga, walking and running clubs.

These sessions have been organised over lunch breaks and after work to best accommodate the team’s personal commitments. Everyone in the organisation will also be allowed an extra half hour break each day that week to fit with these planned sessions. These activities are not mandatory and people will have the opportunity to choose sessions that interest them or be empowered to spend that extra time in a way that personally suits them (for example, going on a walk on their own or meeting a friend for lunch). The most important thing for our organisation is that our team are given protected time to focus on their health and wellbeing in the best way for them.

Over the course of the week our team will be given the opportunity to share their experiences on social media and provide feedback, ensuring we can continue to improve these initiatives and provide sessions which truly meet the needs of the team.