Just as technology, mental health, wellbeing issues and the climate crisis are forcing a radical rethink of workplace culture, the global pandemic has accelerated the change. Wellbeing is now definitively at the heart of the agenda, for management at all levels, employers, employees, consultants, suppliers, HR professionals, and the growing cohort of mental health officers, wellbeing leaders and champions.
The overriding question is: ‘How do we support wellbeing while delivering productivity, profit – and happiness – in the new world of hybrid work?’
The Watercooler is a groundbreaking event from Make a Difference Events (the founders of the MAD World Summit) and the Evening Standard which draws a new map for this shifting and unfamiliar landscape. Traditional attitudes and values are turned on their heads as companies, from FTSE 100 highflyers through to humble SMEs and the smallest start-up, create and sustain a collaborative culture of care. Not to say that profit and productivity lose pride of place – far from it.
From the vast body of research through 2020 and ongoing in 2021, we are finding a fragmented picture where diversity is the only constant. Age, location, home circumstances and hyper - or hypo-sensitive preference for contact or concentration all impact on productivity. There is no ‘one size fits all’ solution.
And there is no shortage of ideas – which is where The Watercooler comes in. A groundbreaking exhibition-with-content format, created to generate the same focused but occasionally random creative serendipity of ‘the watercooler moment’, will give a variety of platforms to thought leaders in the ‘five pillars’ of mental, physical, social, financial and environmental wellbeing. Lectures, presentations, interactive workshops and head-to-head interviews will all deliver practical takeaways that you can apply at work.
Our hugely successful sister event, The Mad World Summit, broke the mould; shifting attitudes from stigma to solutions, and raising a loud voice for investment in employee mental health and wellbeing. Employers, managers, employees: gather round The Watercooler. We need a break.