Well-Being Management Playbook
The way we work matters for our well-being.
This playbook is about blending workplace health and wellness (well-being) with project management.
In order to achieve sustainability for well-being, to be well today, but also tomorrow, integrating well-being practices into ways of working and managing projects is a must.
This is how we create a culture of health whereby “that is just how we do things around here!”
The Well-Being Management Playbook does not solely place accountability on the individual employee, or team member, and rely on their motivation for well-being. Rather, the playbook shares what can be done for organizational accountability through project management practices so that team members are given the time, space, support, and opportunity to go about their well-being in a work context.
Well-being can be integrated into the following 10 work and project management practices. This integration is not a start and end program, nor do all 10 practices come with a mandatory cost, data, or technology requirement.
By integrating well-being into work and project management practices, more often than not, the root cause of work stress leading to adverse well-being can be addressed as a systematic approach. This is why the Well-Being Management Playbook can be an input for psychological safety and total health management.
1. Quality Management Plans
The insertion of sections into quality management plans dedicated to highlighting well-being principles which are of utmost value for successfully completing the work or projects, such as: cognition, endurance, strength, creativity, togetherness, or problem-solving. Organizations can then look at well-being factors such as psychological safety or the built environment and healthy building principles to help support the identified well-being principles vital to the work or projects
2. Communication Plans
The implicit nuances of communication, a contributor to social well-being, can be referenced in communication plans. When creating communication plans, reflecting on team member well-being in the sense of personality types, can create awareness about not only what is said and when, but how it is said. In addition, this information can be shared with vendors involved in procurement.
3. Schedule Forecasts
When looking ahead to plan work or projects, what can be taken into consideration for designing schedule forecasts is well-being through work-life balance, productivity preferences, and energy patterns. If the holistic lives of team members can be considered, to best position team members for high performance and excellence, the conditions of work or projects are that much more favourable for team members.
4. Lessons Learned
Upon the completion of work or project milestones, reflecting on lessons learned in terms of team member well-being can act as an indicator for keeping a pulse on team member well-being. Lessons learned can be logged in a Postmortem Report or Corporate Knowledge Base, and be in terms of sources of stress, along with the physical, emotional, or behavioural responses to stress of team members.
Including mentions of well-being in work or project meetings at the individual, team, or company level, reiterates a culture of care. Conversations in and of themselves can be a form of well-being. It isn’t about managers, or anyone for that matter, having all the answers or recommendations; but rather, active listening, and mentioning supports or resources which may already exist. Input and feedback for well-being from team members can also be gathered in this regard through meetings.
6. Team Charters
Team charters can detail well-being philosophy’s and where the line can be drawn about sacrificing well-being for the work or projects, such as: not deliberately skip meals, no work being done at 3:00AM (industry-specific), and a pre-identified means to pursue early conflict resolution. When this information is mentioned in team charters, it can symbolize permission for team members in that it’s okay for team members to take care of themselves and to prioritize well-being in specific regards.
7. Stakeholder Registers
In order to be inclusive of all stakeholders involved in the work or projects, a stakeholder to make apparent for their impact on the work or projects is the team member who others can reach out to for well-being support. Further, for well-being through the lens of the Culture of Health model, a reference to Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health which contains the pillars of employee, environment, community, and consumer health, stakeholder registers can help identify stakeholders for each of these pillars.
8. Risk Registers
Well-being, whether it specifically be navigating emotions or joint pain, is dynamic. The bodies and minds of team members may not feel identical today to tomorrow, which can have an effect on the term ‘human capital’. Therefore, the assumptions put into team member well-being can be revisited through the inclusion of well-being items in a risk register for the work or projects. That way, the cost of doing nothing for well-being can begin to make sense, and a risk management strategy for well-being can be put into place.
9. Change Request Forms
Change is inevitable, and at the same time, change is not always a close friend of well-being . When change does arise for the work or projects, team members can acknowledge well-being within change request forms so that team members are considerate of the well-being of each other in response to change. This can include acknowledging the additional time, effort, and physical or mental capacity, to go about the change. When team members can express this human-centric acknowledgment of change management, other team members can feel cared for and supported.
10. Business Cases
Well-being can be integrated into business cases for work or projects from the perspective of thinking about the triple bottom-line (profit, people, and planet). Incorporating environmental, social, and governance (ESG) factors could be leveraged within business cases as well. Doing so connects well-being practices with sustainability practices. In this way, the work or projects can in and of themselves be included in sustainability and social responsibility reporting, serving as an input for feelings of team member purpose and morale, and an indicator of long-term organizational health for investor relations.