We’re cajoled, nudged, and sometimes even nagged about the importance of annual health checks. There’s no doubt frequent check-ins on how our body is running lets us nip issues in the bud early and maintain our health in the long run. But when was the last time we put that kind of spotlight on our mental wellbeing at work?
Amidst the overwhelming adaptations forced worldwide due to the recent pandemic, it is no surprise that the Mind Share Partners’ 2021 Mental Health at Work Report reports that mental health concerns have increased over the past two years. Work-life balance, boundary setting, and avoiding burnout may be at the top of mind for many when thinking about enhancing workplace wellness.
As such, we’re welcoming an era where a company’s health is measured beyond its revenues and returns, but also the mental and emotional wellbeing of the people powering it. So what are some available avenues to promote a positive work culture amongst ourselves? Here’s our 4 workplace habits that are sure to kickstart some positive change
Pick up a new skill
It goes without saying that picking up a new skill – whether within or outside work – always packs a good serotonin punch. At work, upskilling doesn’t just feel good, but is also directly beneficial to employees’ careers, boosting motivation and increasing adaptability amidst a rapidly changing world.
Upskilling can take on different forms. Employees can pick up new skills to help them develop in their current career track. Increasingly, people are seeking skills that can help them make lateral career shifts instead, expanding their knowledge to create value within their company, beyond their current department and know-hows.
When it comes to Sephora Asia, both are equally celebrated, with career progressions and mobility being highly encouraged. Owing to such positive responses towards lifelong learning, it’s not surprising to hear of people who began their careers specialising in e-commerce expand to leading omni-channel retail teams, such as Vikas Gupta. Sephorans like Pamas Limpiwatana, Training Manager at Sephora Thailand, get to see firsthand how her efforts to upskill her team members keeps them engaged and motivated, “especially when new skills can be applied in and outside of work”, Pamas adds.
Sephora Asia has a dedicated internal job posting platform that advertises what is available across Sephora and LVMH Worldwide, an example of infrastructure that supports internal career mobility. Hear your people – or yourself – out. If they feel stuck in their careers, it’s time to give upskilling a serious go.
Everyone benefits from the innovation, empathy, and creativity that an inclusive workplace breeds. People from a wide range of backgrounds and experiences colour everything from everyday interactions to top-level executive decisions with new ideas, approaches, and perspectives. Insights into attitudes about diversity at work has revealed that two-thirds of job seekers consider diversity an important factor when evaluating potential employers, according to research by Glassdoor.
The importance of Diversity, Equality, and Inclusion (DE&I) is highlighted in every new Sephorian’s onboarding experience, including mandatory Unconscious Bias training to recognize and challenge biassed thinking. Nonetheless, DE&I isn’t just another performance metric – it’s important for leaders not to simply pay lip service but listen to what their people need. Surveys are a great way to do regular pulse checks, and for Sephora Asia, the inclusion of its Disability Pillar in 2022 reflected how insightful feedback can lead to tangible DE&I initiatives.
Set the precedent for DE&I by being reciprocative to discussing topics and embracing changes that’ll lead to a healthier workplace.
Find the Beauty Beyond work
Giving back to society shouldn’t be something employees can only do off the clock. Satisfaction and motivation can rise when people are given the chance to work on socially impactful projects.
It’s not surprising, given that Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives pull a double shift in creating happier workplaces. They help companies to address social or environmental issues, while letting employees know they are working for a company that is making a positive impact on society.
The Sephora Asia team are no strangers to finding that beauty beyond work. Now into their 9th year of partnership, the Sephora China team works with the NGO Smiles Action to enable children and teens to undergo cleft lip surgeries. Beyond setting up a donation system, the partnership sees employee volunteers travelling onsite annually to engage with beneficiaries too. Employees championed the cause so much so that in 2022, Beauty Pass members across all SEA markets could donate their loyalty points and have the opportunity to follow the Sephora Asia team to on-site trips.
Companies also have the option to give back to society by committing themselves to sustainability, just as the Sephora Clean seal does. The seal makes selecting environmentally conscious options easier, with products that are vegan, cruelty-free, and free from a certain list of chemicals being awarded the seal. The campaign has since expanded to become the Sephora Clean + Planet Positive campaign, which includes sustainable brands that make a positive impact on the environment.
Provide Platforms for Creativity
As much as companies need a strong and united identity, tapping on the creativity within each individual is an efficient way to stay relevant and innovative. Companies need to curate platforms to showcase individuals’ creativity accessible and encouraged.
These could look like accessible feedback frameworks/platforms for employees, frequent opportunities for career shifts into new departments, and to express their individualities, amongst others. Sephora Asia has its LVMH DARE program that encourages employees to propose innovative ideas that solve a business challenge. Shortlisted participants across the globe are invited to pitch their ideas and get funding à la Shark Tank.
Separately, Sephora launched its global employee value proposition in 2020, where they celebrate 4 key behaviours highly valued and embodied in the company. These value propositions, – Beauty & Beyond, Creativity Unleashed, Endless Evolution, and Boldly Authentic – encompass a range of principles designed to benefit every leader, manager, and employee at Sephora Asia as much as possible. To reap the benefits of something has intangible as creativity, it’s up to leaders to innovate and employees to utilise infrastructure to foster it.