When mapping out the customer journey, small business owners lean in hard on improving customer experience. And, although putting customer needs first is beneficial, many miss the secret ingredient to excellent customer experience — improving employee wellness.

No matter how great your employees can be on the job, if their well-being isn’t taken care of, it’ll catch up to them. Happy customers begin with happy employees. Implement these simple tips on how to improve employee wellness so they can deliver quality service to your customers.

Foster a Culture of Communication

Part of addressing the issues plaguing your employees is to have an open line of communication. That begins at the top. By being the employer who listens to employees’ problems, whether personal or professional, you allow for effective communication.

3 in 5 employees are not receiving adequate support from supervisors to help manage stress.

When your employees can’t resolve their issues, it can trickle down. And when frustration rears its head while communicating with customers, it’s bad news for your business.

Imagine your most helpful employee, burdened with life problems. Suddenly their email responses to customers now have a defensive tone, and they’re missing key details that could solve simple issues.

By keeping an open flow of communication, your employee would’ve felt comfortable enough to come to you when their childhood friend passed, allowing you the chance to give them time off to grieve and mentally reset before returning with a more level head.

These situations aren’t a quick fix. Offering time off to grieve requires having a healthy and helpful team step up and step in, which is when work wellness comes full circle.

Create Healthy Boundaries

Let’s talk personal information — actually, no. Let’s talk about not discussing personal information. HR is the safe place for employees, but sometimes they’d rather not disclose life’s details. Often they feel like it is the only route to getting the support they need. You can be the change.

About 20% of the time, depression interferes with a person’s ability to complete physical job tasks.

When it comes to your employees taking personal time off, reassure them there’s no need to share why the time is needed. Sharing a private problem can be triggering and run an emotional toll on a person.

Not asking for the details when time off is requested shows that you trust them to make the right decisions and not take advantage of the policy.

At the same time, it allows you to show your employees you have their back and their best interest at heart.

Integrate Technology Where You Can

Give more time back to your employees by using technology. Automating repetitive tasks gives your employees more time to spend building genuine relationships with customers.

92% of employees say having the technology to do their job efficiently affects their work satisfaction.

Streamlining your processes also means your employees get a second to breathe. Now they can take a 15-minute walk to give their brain a break and release tension. Or have a full-hour lunch break to enjoy a healthy meal, as opposed to a drive-thru combo.

Want to Do More?

When you’re not sure what to do, finding a professional is the way to go. Other ways to offer support to your employees include:

    • Making mental health self-assessment tools available to employees
    • Offer clinical screenings for depression from mental health professionals
    • Provide access to life coaching, counseling or self-help programs
    • Have materials like brochures and videos available as a help resource
    • Offer quiet spaces for employee use
    • Allow employees to contribute in decision-making that impacts them

Committing to excellent employee wellness will have a positive impact on the quality of service your customers receive. It isn’t always an easy process, but the reward can be huge for your employees, customers and your business.