The Proof Is In The POWR

There has been a massive increase in digital technology and wearable devices over the last decade and many of us are striving to reach that daily ten thousand step goal, even if this means doing laps around our bedroom just before bedtime. The buzz of acknowledgement when we reach our target goal is like getting a pat on the back from our very own 24/7 personal trainer and the sense of pride we feel before we rest up for the night is indeed very satisfying.

These little prompts and notifications really do help us to stay motivated and these days these same technologies can really help us set and achieve goals across a wide range of areas and activities, helping us more easily monitor our healthy behaviours over time.

This digital health technology boom now includes apps and online platforms providing interactive tools and information on wellbeing guidance, mood tracking and practical advice across a multitude of wellbeing areas including Life Satisfaction, Physical Health, Emotional Wellbeing and Social Support. POWR is one of these innovate platforms, leading the way and contributing to the wellbeing needs of employees across Europe, the US, Australia and the UK.

Over the last 3 years, Wrkit, the company behind digital wellbeing platform, have been developing POWR which has grown and evolved in response to the ever-changing landscape of wellbeing. The wellbeing of employees, ease of access to information, and effectiveness of online self-help tools are at the forefront of everything that POWR strives to provide. The user-friendly and interactive nature of the platform ensures that support is available at the click of a button and provides instant advice and access to hundreds of behaviour change plans, that have been created by a team of psychologists and health experts to specifically meet the needs of each employee, in a personalised way. These plans help improve wellbeing based on Self Awareness, Goal-Setting and ongoing Self-Monitoring and gives individuals the chance to take an active part in improving their overall health and wellbeing. Designed to recreate a professional health consultation experience, with a variety of ongoing supports.

Companies have always faced the challenge of effectively supporting employees to improve their levels of health and wellbeing and these challenges have increased significantly in recent times, considering the amount of employees now working from home. Research shows that the promotion of employee wellbeing in the workplace has many long-term benefits, not only for employees but also for the overall health of the organisation. From an employer’s point of view, it can be hard to monitor the mood of staff and to check in with team members who are away from the office, as they don’t have the same opportunities for casual chats or to notice visual signs of how colleagues are. The pandemic has certainly highlighted the need to be proactively supporting employee health and companies know that it is not easy to motivate their staff to engage in daily self-care and invest in on their wellbeing at work, however recent engagement statistics for POWR are showing that this can be achieved!

Within POWR employees are given the opportunity to not only track their mood every day but are encouraged to engage in the behaviour change plans which are specifically created to improve mood and wellbeing. These plans provide people with the skills to ‘Understand Worry’, to manage ‘Feeling Overwhelmed’ and ways to overcome being ‘Stuck in a Rut’, common stressors seen in the everyday lives of many employees during the pandemic.

The ‘Breathe’ and ‘Listen’ exercises within the POWR platform are particularly popular among employees across the globe according to our engagement statistics. Medical research shows that taking just a few minutes out of your busy work day to focus on your breathing, activates the parasympathetic nervous system which has been proven to significantly reduce stress levels! Employees can then go back and log their wellbeing after the completion of these exercises or having completed a plan and figure out which coping strategies and skills work best for them. POWR also provides short informative blogs and videos which include feel-good, educational pieces on a wide range of health and wellbeing topics, providing employees with the opportunity to learn useful ongoing health strategies.

Employee wellbeing is of the utmost importance during the ongoing challenges of a pandemic and as we spend one third of our adult life at work, POWR is an effective tool to help make it somewhere employees can thrive.

This year we are celebrating International Womens Day by showcasing women in leadership.

V is an experienced tech leader, presently leading and growing Slack Engineering teams in EMEA. She works in complex environments and thrives on bringing people from multiple disciplines together to create robust and resilient applications. Having previously led engineering teams in Spotify, she is passionate about leading and growing high performing teams and achieving the best possible results through collaboration and empowerment. She thrives on the ability to convert learning into tangible actions that lift team capability and is a champion for change. She consistently supports, educates and encourages her team through the change process.

Hi V, what advice would you give to women who want to be leaders?

Now is a great time to be or become a female leader. With so many companies embracing diversity and inclusion there are lots of opportunities to step up and into leadership. For companies today, inclusion is not just about getting the numbers right, it is about leveraging unique experiences, creating real opportunities for diversity and seeking out other points of view. Women have a huge amount to offer organisations, in leading teams at all levels and being actively engaged in company boards. The opportunities are far greater now than ever and women can confidently go for these roles.

What has helped you build your confidence in the workplace?

Knowing my strengths really well and relying on them. One of the key strengths that I know I have and that others have acknowledged in me, is that I am a relational person. People and connection are really important to me. This has helped me be a strong collaborator, as I seek out my team members’ ideas and opinions, and I rely on their feedback, as well as looking to others who have experience and provide input and guidance. Often I am not the most experienced in the room on a certain topic, so I look to my other members to chip in and I help support their growth and confidence to do this – whether it is presentation skills, critical or strategic thinking etc. So another key strength is openness and a willingness to learn, sometimes then being in a support role as a leader.

Amongst the women you’ve worked with, what are some of their traits you admire?

I really admire women that are inclusive of difference, kind to others in the workplace and supportive of other female leader journeys. I am particularly interested in the support and growth of other women leaders as I have experienced this in my leadership journeys. Leaders who were willing to take a chance on me and to provide a guiding hand when needed, to speak up for my competence. These female leaders help bring our voice and influence to the table.

Can you name a woman who has inspired you the most?

Cliche I know, but I would have to say my mother. She came from a difficult background, worked really hard and made me feel like I could be or do anything in life. Like the female leaders I admire, she actively encouraged me and did not put obstacles in my way. She helped facilitate me and my sister being the first in our family to go to university.

Another inspiration to me is former Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg. I loved how she could articulate issues of diversity so well and so clearly, with the skill of keeping the dialogue open, non-threatening and moving forward.

What is the biggest lesson you have learned as a female leader?

In my role I am learning all the time, as it is a fast paced ever changing landscape, so I have learned to be myself. With so much rapidly changing and with Covid being a good example of needing to be able to adapt quickly, I have learned to rely on my own abilities. I don’t shy away from or apologise for being a woman. I openly share my challenges and experiences as a woman in tech. Openness and vulnerability is a strength and I trust that whenever I am honest and vulnerable with my team they are there for me, as I am for them.

What are some strategies that can help women achieve success in the workplace, especially in male-dominated industries?

Seek out mentors. Consider a more senior male from your company as a mentor. They can help you navigate the internal landscape and help you unlock your impact. In return, you may open their eyes to some of the struggles women face and help them by becoming an ally for other women. With other female leaders I encourage them to also be a good ally for other women along the way, so more women are encouraged into leadership and the numbers get better.

What do you think are the biggest challenges ahead for the next generation of female leaders?

The biggest challenge I see is women trusting their own inner voices and embracing the unique aspects of female presence, female experience and acknowledging them as both personal and organizational assets.

Can you recall any biases or assumptions made about you?

I have seen times when I am held to a higher standard than my male counterparts or when I feel like I have to prove myself over and over again. Sadly, I have seen this play out around project assignments – e.g. This project is tough. We better give it to Bob. Although this may be happening unconsciously, it is an impediment to female leaders as they need to be given a chance to show what they can do. Leaders, whether male or female, need to open the doors wider to give women that chance to prove themselves. When we do this more often, I believe the culture will be enriched for our doing so.

October Wellbeing Workshops

Globally 2020 has been the most significant Wellness focused year of all time

In this year full of COVID Challenges, Wrkit is here to help. This October celebrate human health and wellbeing with Wrkit, as we focus on a variety of wellness events and workshops in connection with World Mental Health Day.

A leading employee benefits provider, we can help you arrange speakers, supports and events to celebrate not just Mental Health lone, but a whole spectrum of human health.

Workshop Series Topics (Interactive Webinars, each lasting 40 – 60 minutes)

  • Covid Mindfulness
    Learn to appreciate and practise calming techniques during episodes of COVID worry
  • Anxiety Management
    Learn how to recognise and manage worrying or anxiety provoking thoughts
  • Reframe with a Positive Mindset
    Explore ways to look at life during a challenging time differently, with a positive mindset
  • Coping with Uncertainty
    Manage the uncertainty of reopening of schools and workplaces with some practical psychological tools
  • Setbacks and disappointments
    Learn to manage a variety of disappointments related to COVID with a selection of mind enhancing techniques

Contact Details

Jason Brennan
CTA in Psychotherapy, BA in Psychoanalysis, Certificate in Humanities, CBT practitioner’s cert, Member: IAHIP, TAI, EATA, ITAA

Tel 089 6127812 | Email jason.brennan@wrkit.com | Web wrkit.com

Jason Brennan is a coach and psychotherapist with over 20 years of experience. He supports clients suffering from anxiety, depression, stress, grief & loss, trauma, relationship issues, short and long-term therapy, obsessive thinking, lifestyle, work, and life stage challenges.

He authored his first book Win: Proven Strategies for Success in Sports, Life and Mental Health with friend and mental health advocate Brent Pope – having worked with corporate and sports teams of all levels providing training, workshops, and coaching.