The formula for creative employees: Set them free ⏯️ (5/6)

The wrong formula: work – eat – sleep – repeat. 

The right formula: work – play – entertain – learn – eat – sleep – repeat and not in this order. 

As explained by Leah Marone, mental wellness consultant and psychotherapist:

Taking time away from work does not just serve as a reset, it also encourages team members to revitalize relationships, rekindle dormant hobbies, or ignite a passion. These things should continue to be nurtured and integrated in some capacity into the work week, not just reserved for time away. Avoiding a perpetual cycle of burnout begins with highlighting values and non-negotiables. If leaders are not prioritizing their health, maintaining boundaries, and taking time off, their team members will be hesitant to do the same. Cultivating a culture of wellness begins with a leader team. There will be stressful weeks, but fueling a culture of non-stop urgency and productivity seems to only result in resentment, breakdowns, and inauthentic collaboration.

Leah Marone, Performance Psychology Expert

So you have to do more than tell your employees to take breaks: you have to work the breaks into their routine. 

Create experiences

One way to lead by example is to encourage other interests while at work, as team exercises. 

Volunteer work

Find a cause that is relevant to the company’s mission, and suggest a day of volunteering. 

Team building

Find an activity that everyone can enjoy, and organize a day away from the office, or even an overnight retreat with activities. 

In both of these examples, the most important thing is to find a role for everybody. Everyone on your team won’t enjoy or be able to do the same activities. Whatever you decide to do, make sure everybody has a specific way to contribute, and a role that they are happy to play. 

Respect work boundaries

Productivity is never about hours at work. It’s about what gets done with those hours. 

Track your employees’ performance by productivity rather than by the time they spend at their desks. You’ll be more open to work hours being flexible.

Be aware that people have other responsibilities too.

Encourage external interests

You need work boundaries because everything else has to happen outside of work.

And the point is: you want your employees to give time and attention to those things. 

Just like you, your employees have hobbies, obligations, interests, distractions, pursuits, and concerns. 

Back at work

Allowing the above will 

  • Reduce stress and the risk of burnout
  • Increase trust and satisfaction
  • Improve creativity 

By allowing employees to use their bodies and their brains in different ways. 

What next

Do your employees know their personal mission statements? For a 2-hour workshop to train them to connect personal and business missions, let’s talk