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Building a Workplace Culture of Compassion

Natalie
Stein
November 6, 2019
Building a Workplace Culture of Compassion
Lark

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Workplace culture is more than a soft attribute, and should be more than a second thought. Your workplace culture influences recruitment, productivity, and retention. Not only is building a workplace culture of compassion the right decision from an ethical standpoint, but it is also the right decision for the company’s bottom line.

What Is a Culture of Compassion?

A culture of compassion is a workplace that fosters caring and empathy in a pleasant environment. Elements of compassion may be evident at and between all levels of a company, from the CEO on down: It includes everyone in the company and fosters mutual respect and caring.

A common aspect of a culture of compassion is support for, or emphasis on, employee health and well-being. A truly compassionate approach provides aid targeting individuals with different health statuses, health goals, and levels of willingness to make health changes. Everyone, whether they’re living with a chronic condition like Diabetes or Depression, or at risk for a chronic condition with Prediabetes, deserves compassion from their employer. 

Our motto at Lark Health is “because everyone deserves care and compassion”, and our goal is to enable HR and Benefits leaders like you to offer 24/7 compassionate coaching for individuals with chronic conditions like diabetes and hypertension, as well as those at risk of them. Lark’s programs also provide access to coaching for general wellness goals such as weight loss, stress management, and quitting smoking.

Employer Benefits of a Culture of Compassion

But why should you consider building a culture of compassion? A culture of compassion could potentially improve your bottom line, with stress reduction and health improvement driving proven savings.

Stress is known to be detrimental for businesses. Various estimates have shown that stress lowers employee productivity by 10%, and employees with the highest levels of stress have 46% higher healthcare costs compared to those with the lowest levels of stress. Similarly, those with higher stress have 26% more general practitioner visits and 27% more specialist practitioner visits. What’s worse, it’s not all outside of work: Work-related stressors may be responsible for 16% of overall health care costs.

Access to compassionate coaching may lower stress. More compassionate interactions are proven to lead to bonding and a greater sense of contribution to society, which in turn drives productivity. Foster them, and they may take on a life on their own.

How do you encourage a compassionate culture?

Small-seeming efforts can go a long way towards building a culture that can improve employee health, well-being, and satisfaction, leading to better productivity and lower costs of healthcare, employee turnover, and lost work days.

Employees may thrive when they have more control. For example, when given the choice of sitting or standing while working. Being flexible about employee hours to allow for time to run errands or pick up the children can also boost productivity. 

Employers may want to consider the benefits of employee choice when offering a wellness or chronic disease management program. Lark fits into this type of culture by being available anytime, anywhere. Employees can manage chronic conditions and get support as they work towards achieving their specific health goals at their convenience, with no appointments necessary.

Along with improving health and being available on employees’ terms, Lark is consistent with a culture of compassion in other ways.

  • Inclusivity. Lark is available for those with hypertension, diabetes, prediabetes, and other wellness goals.
  • Personalization. Just as this positive culture encourages coworkers to get to know each other better, Lark gets to know each user better, through artificial intelligence (AI), to offer a personalized experience that only gets more personalized as time passes.
  • Success. Lark celebrates successes and helps overcome setbacks.
  • Open door. Employees in a culture of compassion have a habit of listening, and so does Lark.

It is necessary to do everything possible to success in today’s business climate, and that may mean...being nicer. Evidence is mounting that building a culture of compassion in the workplace can lead to a better bottom line for employees, and it does not take much to improve people’s lives, health, and productivity. Lark can be part of the solution when supporting employee health and well-being without being invasive or dipping far into financial or human resources.

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