In today's fast-paced and digitally connected world, maintaining strong social connections is vital for overall mental well-being, especially in the context of remote work. Recent studies have shed light on the concerning decline in male friendships, which can have a significant impact on mental health and work-life balance. At Perspicuity, we are dedicated to championing male mental health and fostering meaningful friendships among our colleagues. We believe that the strategies we employ can also be borrowed and adapted by our clients to create a supportive and inclusive work environment for their own workforce.
The Decline of Male Friendships: A Growing Concern
As highlighted in many recent articles discussing male friendships and mental health, there are several reasons why many young men struggle to forge authentic connections with others. Societal pressures to conform to traditional notions of masculinity often discourage emotional vulnerability, making it challenging for men to “open up” to their peers. This can lead to a reluctance to express emotions and seek support, ultimately impacting their mental well-being.
Remote work further exacerbates the issue, as it limits opportunities for spontaneous interactions and camaraderie in the workplace. Studies have shown that remote workers, especially younger employees, are more likely to report having no friends at work, which can lead to feelings of isolation and loneliness.
Perspicuity's Commitment to Employee Wellbeing
At Perspicuity, we understand the importance of fostering a supportive and inclusive environment that promotes positive mental health and meaningful friendships among our employees. We have implemented several initiatives to ensure our team members feel connected and supported, regardless of their work location:
- All Hands Meetings and Team Briefings: We regularly hold all hands meetings via Teams, bringing the entire company together to foster a sense of unity and collaboration. Additionally, team briefings every morning and fun activities on Fridays promote camaraderie and encourage open communication.
- Regular Check-ins and One-to-Ones: We prioritise regular one-to-one check-ins between managers and team members, providing a safe space to discuss work-related matters and personal concerns.
- Viva Engage (formerly Yammer): Our Viva Engage platform allows employees to share not only work updates but also their interests, such as recommending movies, books, and local events, fostering connections beyond work tasks.
- Private Healthcare: We offer private healthcare benefits to support our employees' physical and mental well-being, ensuring they have access to professional support when needed.
- Online Mental Health Support: To provide a safe space for anonymous online discussions, we offer a Workspace, enabling employees to share their thoughts and seek advice without fear of judgment.
Embracing Viva Insights: A Path to Improved Work-Life Balance
As part of our commitment to colleague well-being, we recommend utilising Microsoft Viva Insights, a powerful platform that empowers both employers and employees to prioritise mental health in the workplace. Viva Insights offers a range of features that can help employees achieve a better work-life balance and minimise burnout:
- Praise Function: Viva Insights allows employees to send praise to colleagues, celebrating not only direct performance and KPIs but also highlighting the little things that contribute to a positive work environment.
- Daily Focus Plan: The platform helps protect employee time by automatically integrating with Outlook to schedule "Focus time" and apply an automatic "Focusing" status during those periods, encouraging uninterrupted work.
- Quiet Times: Viva Insights monitors interruptions outside of work hours, helping employees maintain boundaries between work and personal life.
- Headspace Integration: To prioritise mental health, Viva Insights offers an integration with Headspace, providing guided meditation and relaxation exercises to promote well-being.
Building a Supportive Work Culture
At Perspicuity, we wholeheartedly recognise the importance of male mental health and the need for meaningful friendships, especially in the context of remote work. By fostering a supportive and inclusive environment and leveraging tools like Microsoft Viva Insights, we are committed to prioritising employee well-being and promoting a positive work-life balance.
Through sharing this article, we aim to raise awareness of the challenges men face in making and maintaining friendships, particularly in the current world around us. We believe that by utilising the tools at our disposal, such as Viva Insights, we can empower individuals to support one another better. Together, let's break down the barriers that hinder male friendships and create a workplace that values and nurtures the mental health of every team member.
By embracing empathy, understanding, and open communication, we can build a work culture that fosters genuine connections and supports the mental well-being of all our employees. At Perspicuity, we stand committed to making a positive difference in the lives of our team members and the broader community.
Let's continue our journey towards a more compassionate and inclusive work environment, where mental health is at the forefront of our priorities. Together, we can create a workplace that not only thrives professionally but also nourishes the emotional and social aspects of our lives.