Bob SelleComment

Make a lasting impact on someone in 2018

Bob SelleComment


Happy new year from bob the hr guy,

I am going to seize the opportunity to prey on leaders looking to strengthen their influence  in the new year.

How? By ensuring  you, as a leader, truly understand your impact on your team. After conducting a great deal of research and carrying on many conversations, I came to realize the profound impact managers have on their team’s health. If you survey your managers and asked them - What impact do you have  on an individual's  well-being,  as a manager? Would they know? Would they be able to tell you about the impact they had on an employee’s well-being?

It took me a little while to gather all the pieces to tell the right story, but I have found that managers have an impact on employee well-being. I can tell you this is a focus for my organization in the coming year.

As leaders, we know every employee has  basic needs. These include:  

  1. Feeling of belongingness

  2. Feeling their thoughts and opinions count

  3. Feeling appreciated for work well done

  4. Trusting managers are committed to their development

Many of us know work can cause stress for their teams. We also know the world of work today happens at home and the office. I know, through experience and data, that addressing stress can impact many of the highest risk medical categories, from weight, blood pressure,  and diabetes, to depression.

Three  articles focusing on employee well-being were particularly intriguing. The first was a HBR on loneliness at work. Here is a snippet from the article:

One of the reasons why work comes up as a possible antidote to loneliness is that we spend so much time there. It’s often the place where we have the most social contact with other human beings. Even if you have very few one-on-one interactions with people, if you feel that you understand and trust them, it reinforces a sense of belonging and alleviates that feeling of loneliness.


Another was published in the McKinsey Quarterly in October. Below is a piece that stood out to me.


The Person you report to at work can be more important to your health than your doctor. 75% of people say their boss is the cause of stress in life. We want to send people home safe, healthy, and fulfilled- all three dimensions. Employers are in a unique position to be a good influence on health and general well-being. After all working people spend more of their waking time on the job than anywhere else.

All of this has implications for companies. It stands to reason that if lonely workers are less healthy, they’ll be less productive and less engaged. Many studies support this correlation, including one suggesting that one-third of all sick days result from mental health issues. Research also shows that employees who report higher well-being miss fewer days, get better evaluations, and are more productive.


The final article is from Gallup. The title is eye catching  “ The No. 1 Employee Benefit That No One's Talking About”. Gallop points out something many of us know, but sometimes forget. The manager is the key to success for our teams. Below is a sample from the article.


"Having a bad manager is often a one-two punch: Employees feel miserable while at work, and that misery follows them home, compounding their stress and putting their well-being in peril."

It’s a new year and a chance for a new you. Make this your new year's resolution to get yourself, your teams, and if they are not already, your company focused on employee well-being. It is not hard; it’s simply giving others what you have most likely received as you progressed through your career. None of us are so busy that we cannot make time for the people we spend most of our day with. The payoff is too significant for any of us to ignore it.

Where would a company start?

  1. Begin with on boarding. A well planned transition to a company alleviates stress.

  2. Assign a buddy to your new hires or those new to the team.

  3. Help people find a friend at work. Studies show retention climbs when people have a friend.

  4. Don’t miss touch bases. If your person is a new hire, make all of them count and ask how they are doing.

  5. Schedule monthly team meetings and encourage participation.

  6. Encourage development and learning. Create dynamic working teams so team members meet like minded thinkers.

  7. Invest in teaching managers and supervisors. This trend that is happening - where no reviews are conducted and others go around bad managers - will catch up to companies.

  8. Lastly, show appreciation and listen. A simple hello, or how was the weekend, goes a long way.

For more go to

Be Well,