As we spend a large proportion of our life working, both our work environment and how we interact with it play key roles in our wellness.

Michelle Bondesio, a behaviour design consultant and wellbeing mentor based in the North West, shares why putting your people's wellbeing at the centre of your business is good for your bottom line.

“Simply put, our people are our number one asset. If they aren't doing well, this impacts on our business.”

Yet, not doing well at work is an issue that's on the rise.

The quarterly Qualtrics Employee Pulse announced in November 2017 that around 50% of employees in the UK are struggling with work-life balance. The survey of over 4000 people also suggests that the situation seems worst in the North West of England.

The Stevenson Farmer "Thriving at Work" government report was also released late last year. Covering mental health at work, its findings highlight that employees in SMEs are at particular risk. Although 99% of businesses in the UK are SMEs, only 1 in 10 of them offer some form of occupational health support, as opposed to 8 in 10 at larger companies.

Whilst addressing workload issues is critical, Michelle Bondesio believes there are other ways to help support your people too.

"Our work habits and behaviour can affect our ability to work effectively. This includes how we handle our workload and the pressure associated with it; and how we interact with our work environment and our work tools while doing so. By supporting personal development within a more aware work environment, we can help our teams learn how to help themselves."

Work-life balance is unrealistic

Michelle also suggests that the concept of work-life balance is misleading, as balance is both a static state and something we're realistically unable to maintain for long periods. Instead, she motivates her clients to replace that notion with the more attainable and manageable idea of "work-life cadence”. It involves a change in mindset, adapting to the rhythm of our lives rather than seeking static balance.

“Creating work-life cadence involves building resilience, making self care a priority, and developing our awareness and emotional intelligence. These “soft” skills help us to cope better with the typical ups and downs of our environment.”

Thriving people equals a thriving business

Michelle believes that focusing on your team's wellbeing and personal development is also a key differentiator and success metric for your business. She cites the School of Life's meta-analysis of various studies as proof. Their findings suggest that happy, healthy people at work are 31% more productive, make 37% more sales and are three times more creative, no matter the challenges they are facing.

She says, ”When we help our people become better at being themselves, then they bring more of themselves to everything that they do.”

Michelle concludes "The bottom line is clear. If your people are happier and healthier at work, this helps you create a more effective, sustainable business producing better results. So, why wouldn’t you make that a priority?”

For more information on how you can activate potential in your people and business, visit or contact Michelle Bondesio at