Social wellness focuses on building and nurturing meaningful and supportive relationships with individuals, groups and communities. It supports you in your communication, trust and conflict management skills. Social wellness also includes showing respect for others, oneself and other cultures. Social Wellbeing is used to describe how a member of staff feels they are connected to and included within a work setting.
Social Wellness is about:
• Relationships and how we interact with our colleagues
• School values and ethos
• Workplace Culture
• Participation in social networks
• Increasing self-esteem
• Providing a source of safety in difficult times
• Reflection on social needs
• Making the effort to keep in touch
• Participating in groups
• Feeling valued as a person, colleague and employee
• Reflect on yourself and your social needs. What are the aspects of your social life that you enjoy? What parts would you like to improve?
• Participate in group discussions and practice active listening.
• Make an effort to keep in touch with supportive friends, family and mentors.
• Join a club or organisation.
• Participate in study groups.
• Volunteer in the community.
Why does social wellbeing matter to organisations?
When staff feel a sense of belonging within the workplace, they are more likely to be happy, form relationships with colleagues and develop their careers. These are all very important aspects of a positive school culture and normally driven by the school's ethos and core values. An employee who feels valued by their employer will be driven and will want to be proactive in the workplace. If you value your staff individually and support them appropriately, you will gain higher productivity, good quality teaching and more likely to retain your staff.
• Consider flexible working and policies. Do you encourage staff to balance home and work responsibilities? Do current policies reduce heavy administration tasks and cut down on time spent working outside of school?
• Raise awareness of various diversities and different communities amongst school staff
• Encourage a buddy system with peer to peer support
• Regular appraisals with mentors
• Regular success celebrations used to recognise your staff contributions
• Creating social areas within the school for staff to interact
• Regular career progression conversations with mentor and supporting with appropriate training
• Develop coaching, learning and job-shadowing opportunities
• Ensure policies on bullying and harassment are in place
• Encourage lunch and learn events with staff
This 5 step guide to improving your social wellbeing and the Social Wellness toolkit can be a good place to start.
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