Mental health & well being at Zego

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We at Zego take wellbeing and the health of our team seriously. That’s why we’ve built it into our culture from day one.

Why should a company care?

Nowadays a work-life balance is an outdated concept. Today’s work is no longer the traditional 9–5 in an office space; our products are specifically created for those moving away from conventional methods of work. Likewise home-life isn’t separated from the working day either. With social media and new ways of working, it gets jumbled together — deadlines, pressures, family, relationships — we’re all constantly dealing with these, which can have a profound impact on our work.

At Zego, we don’t just care about people while they’re working for us in the day. One of the ways we support our team is through our mental health and wellbeing initiative.

How do we do this?

We take a two-pronged approach to supporting our team in their mental health and wellbeing:

1) A set of initiatives we run (the big stuff)

2) Everyday life at Zego (the little stuff).

The big stuff

When we started thinking about our vision for Zego’s culture, one of the first things we did was to sign the Sanctus Pledge. For those who haven’t heard of the pledge, it’s ‘a commitment employers can make towards creating an open environment where mental health is supported, and people can bring their full selves to work.’

This comes with 10 commitments around creating an environment where people feel comfortable talking about their mental health and wellbeing. These are bold statements, but we wanted to go above and beyond to be clear on how we want to people to feel whilst working at Zego.

To encourage conversation around mental health and wellbeing, we have a quarterly workshop open to everyone in the company. Last time we learnt about how stress manifests itself and how we can take steps to handle it better. These are great opportunities for people to talk openly or just listen whilst people share their own experiences and tips for coping during difficult times.

Getting people to feel like they can talk about their mental health is one thing, but knowing what to say to them is something else entirely. That’s why we have created the role of a mental health first aider, in the theme of treating mental health the same as physical. This means that we can navigate this subject confidently and point our team in the right direction to get the professional support they might need.

We have also partnered with Blackwood Consultants for therapeutic coaching. They combine coaching and therapy to offer a wide range of support to our team. Whether they want to learn to be better at public speaking, or want to talk to someone about something more personal, such as a relationship breaking down. We cover the cost of 12 sessions a year and people can use these however they like. It goes without saying, but these are completely confidential — we never hear about anything that is discussed in those sessions.

The little stuff

We don’t think it always requires a big initiative or support programme to make a difference. That’s why we focus on the small, everyday things as well.

For example, we make sure to have a range of snacks and drinks available to all employees, suiting all dietary requirements.

We have an open plan office as we value open collaboration between teams. However that doesn’t suit everyone, so we provide noise cancelling headphones and have a designated quiet space for people to get away from the hustle and bustle from time-to-time.

People also bring their dogs into the office regularly and the atmosphere changes instantly and with good reason. It’s proven that having pets around can improve mood and every time we have a dog in the office we can see it.

We also support and encourage healthy lifestyles, running a weekly yoga session on site, giving everyone the opportunity to stretch out and focus on mindfulness. We frequently partake in group sessions, from boxing to squash we’re always encouraging our team to try something new. Recently we held a Sports Day in the local park and next month we have an all-company rounders match.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, in every 1–2–1 our managers have with their team, they check in with how people are — not just the stuff going on at work, but the stuff happening in their personal lives too. It gives everyone the opportunity to talk about anything that might be bothering them and bounce ideas around about how to deal with it. Managers get a fuller picture of the people in their team and can make sure they get the support they need.

We at Zego are firm believers that people make a business and that they do their best work when they feel their best. Our continued investment in the health and wellbeing of our staff is a testament to our commitment of embedding it within our culture as we grow.

If you fancy learning more about life at Zego, please check out our careers page.