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COLLATERAL BENEFITS OF A HEALING-CENTERED WORKPLACE

WRITTEN BY:
ALEXANDRA BERRYMAN

By weaving healing-centered principles into everything we do, we’re not only helping our team heal and thrive, we’re also discovering unique strengths that benefit the business as a whole.

At the Freedom Business Alliance, we’re big on healing-centered workplaces. But it’s not just about making staff feel good—it’s about transforming whole organizations to be agents of healing.

We believe that Freedom Business is just good business and it’s good for business!

By weaving healing-centered principles into everything we do, we’re not only helping our team heal and thrive, we’re also discovering unique strengths that benefit the business as a whole. In this article, let’s dive into these “extra benefits” that come with embracing healing at work.

But first, let us consider – what is a Healing-Centered Workplace?

As the 5th Commitment in the Freedom Business Code of Excellence, a healing-centered workplace is “demonstrated by fully integrating knowledge about trauma and recovery practices into its policies, procedures, and practices, seeking to actively reduce the possibility of re-traumatization of Personnel, especially those that have previously experienced Human Trafficking”.

As Freedom Businesses, we recognize our unique position in the lives of survivors of human trafficking. We have the ability to positively impact the recovery of employees who have experienced significant trauma by consciously implementing healing-centered workplace policies, practices, and procedures that support the healing journey.

But how does it impact the organization as a whole?

Collateral Benefit #1 – More engaged staff

By taking into account a person’s history, we can create a concept called “Psychological Safety”. Popularized by research conducted at Google, Psychological Safety refers to an environment where individuals feel safe to take interpersonal risks, speak their minds, and express their ideas without fear of repercussion. When employees feel psychologically safe, they are more likely to:

  1.  Share Ideas Freely: In a supportive environment, individuals feel comfortable expressing their thoughts and opinions without fear of judgment or rejection. This open exchange fosters creativity and innovation within teams.
  2. Take Calculated Risks; Employees who feel supported are more willing to step out of their comfort zones and take on new challenges. This risk-taking behavior can lead to personal and professional growth, benefiting both the individual and the organization.
  3. Seek Help When Needed Rather than suffering in silence, employees in a supportive workplace are more likely to reach out for help when facing difficulties. Whether it’s seeking guidance from a supervisor or accessing mental health resources, this proactive approach can prevent issues from escalating.

Collateral Benefit #2 – A healthier workforce

Beyond the immediate impact on job performance and morale, a workplace that prioritizes understanding and safety can also yield significant health benefits for employees.

Numerous studies have linked supportive work environments to:

  1. Reduced Stress Levels: Chronic stress can take a toll on both physical and mental health. By creating a supportive atmosphere, workplaces can help employees better manage stressors, leading to lower cortisol levels and improved overall well-being.
  2. Improved Mental Health Outcomes: Mental health disorders, including anxiety and depression, are prevalent in today’s workforce. A workplace that acknowledges and accommodates individuals’ needs can serve as a protective factor against these conditions, promoting resilience and recovery.
  3. Enhanced Physical Health: Constant states of stress can have an adverse impact on an individual’s health. By prioritizing employee support and understanding, workplaces can contribute to better overall health and reduced absenteeism due to illness.

Collateral Benefit #3 – Boosted Team Functioning and Morale

Perhaps one of the most significant benefits of fostering a supportive workplace culture is the positive impact on team dynamics and morale. When individuals feel valued, respected, and understood, they are more likely to:

  1. Collaborate Effectively: Trust and mutual respect are essential ingredients for successful collaboration. In an environment where past traumas are acknowledged and accommodated, teams can work together more cohesively, leveraging each member’s strengths to achieve common goals.
  2. Build Stronger Relationships: Empathy and compassion are key components of a supportive workplace culture. When colleagues understand and empathize with each other’s experiences, it strengthens interpersonal connections and fosters a sense of camaraderie within the team.
  3. Increase Job Satisfaction: Employees who feel supported and valued are more likely to derive satisfaction from their work. This increased job satisfaction translates into higher levels of engagement, productivity, and retention, benefiting both individual employees and the organization as a whole.

So, what’s the bottom line?

Healing-centered workplaces not only support employees who have lived experience of human trafficking, but the culture that’s created promotes healing from all forms of trauma and ultimately the organization as a whole benefits. By prioritizing healing and empowerment, we’re not only boosting morale and productivity, we’re also fostering a culture of support and growth that pays dividends for everyone involved.

As Freedom Businesses, we have the opportunity to show the wider business community the true potential of business operations. Businesses that restore, heal and thrive.

Additional Resources:

Learn more about the Six Commitments to Freedom Business, including a healing-centered workplace by downloading the Freedom Business Code of Excellence.

Join the FBA as a member and receive access to the latest training and research that equips your business in the creation of a healing-centered workplace.

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