Building A Healthy And Happy Work Culture After Coronavirus

Stephanie Steele Thursday, 11 June 2020

We have a full Masterclass on this topic, of building a healthy and happy work culture, with industry professionals and case studies from business owners who have felt the struggle of the dreaded work-life balance. However, as the Covid-19 pandemic hit and we were forced indoors, we kept up to date with newsletters, podcasts and Instagram stories for ways in which businesses, individuals and teams were surviving in isolation. Away from studios, apart from each other, and potentially without familiar stable surroundings, we look to resources that may offer respite.

On the other side of this chaos, the learnings from the experience both emotionally and professionally should put us in good stead to be more flexible in future should something dramatic (or a second wave) occur again.



The Inhabit book from the DO series may in reality be a coffee table book (that talks about coffee table books), and one that gets you procrastinating with home styling rather than working - however, we all know that glorious cathartic feeling after a good clean or sort out. This small read has pick-up tips, like going on a wild walk and bringing the finds back for your shelves, to help you see your space in a new way.

The Good Trade is a daily newsletter that simply without fuss gives you an update on music, listening, looking and reading, providing you with varying perspectives. They created an article on 99 Ways To Add Mindfulness To Your Day, that splits up mindfulness techniques into morning, routine, work and outside, with others, and without tech. It includes simple gratitude check ins, to the helpful list-making, to shutting down your computer early.

When we return to shops, restaurants and offices, the space is going to take on a different vibe, with safety precautions necessary and contact with each other limited. This infographic from Raconteur was created in 2017, but will give you an idea of employee perspectives of wellbeing strategies. In our interview with Liz Earle, she explained that it is the team that makes everything.

“Your team and the people around you are your number one business asset. You need to really protect and look after them”. - Liz Earle

When considering your businesses' wellbeing priorities, this infographic could signal some drivers you might not have thought of, or remind you of what should be reassessed before you return.

Clerkenwell Workshops, London by Toa Heftiba

Adriene Mishler's YouTube channel has massively increased in followers over lockdown. In these short snappy yoga sessions, Adriene will guide you through varying sessions with handy titles to help you focus on how you're feeling and what you want to get out of your time. We particularly appreciate that they are on average only 20 minutes long and yet you feel a sense of achievement and movement. Adriene's practice isn't like what you'd get in a studio - it is simple, quirky and easy. This meditation practice for anxiety will guide you in creating a relationship with your breath.

The Courier Daily podcast was a wonderful way to stay up to date with how businesses were mutating and staying afloat; it was an authentic conversation and along with their weekly newsletter, can provide you with modern business case studies and tools to inform your own model and strategies. The podcast has now reverted to its weekly placing now that lockdown has eased, but is no less impactful (and gives you chance to check in with other listening). We also wanted to highlight this article, Founders: How Are You Really Feeling? from Courier written a year ago, investigating how and why founders let the check in with their own mental health slide as their business grows.

Another Raconteur infographic, but this one about boosting workplace productivity. It aims to help you understand how time during the day is usually spent, where and how communication occurs, impact of space and place on workers, and productivity of flexible working hours.

We haven't vetted this list of online learning courses, but there are well-known companies on this list - from a small payment per month, to an almost degree-price. Future Learn is missing, which is a shame as this is something we've used ourself and is mostly free. We would of course also recommend our very own platform, for holistic guidance and expert advice on the responsible fashion industry.

Smarter office buildings, energy efficiency and interesting yet familiar materials can create workplaces that will embed the value of your responsible business, while attracting "talent" who would be proud and happy to work for your company. This article from Raconteur tells you more.

Second Home Workspace

This Happiness Lab podcast episide focusses on "good and bad screens", and especially how the pandemic has had us reaching for our phones, laptops and tablets perhaps more frequently than normal as our other leisure outlets have been taken away. Dr Laurie Santos says,

There’s nothing inherently wrong with looking at our screens, there’s no need to be critical or restrictive for the sake of being critical and restrictive

but instead it's about understanding how to make sure the time that you are spending on these devices is making you feel productive; "what part is necessary and what part is making me feel good and connected"? We need to start paying attention to how these screens make us feel, and be intentional with our screen time, strategically using our screens to boost our wellbeing rather than increasing worry and limiting sleep. Create goals and principles, set a screen time budget: like how you’d protect your money, you should protect your time. Listen in to learn more.

Photo: Gilles Lambert, Unsplash

We could recommend many episodes from the Ctrl Alt Delete podcast, hosted by writer Emma Gannon (who also has a great fortnightly newsletter The Hyphen) but it's worth you checking in to see what stands out to you. It covers all types of business owners, and specifically looks for those working with a side hustle. Emma is also an author of a few books: Sabotage, The Multi-Hyphen Method and The Multi-Hyphen Life about how you can learn to balance more than one passion.

Rebecca Solnit reflects on how mutual aid is imperative as we emerge out of the coronavirus pandemic. With volunteers rushing to help the NHS, food producers working to keep doors open to provide community meals, and makers working late in their homes and studios to produce masks and visors using machinery and tools usually set aside for their businesses, it is clear that community is key for long-lasting change.

A husband and wife making protective visors with 3D printers in their home garage in Calabasas, California. Photograph: Robyn Beck/AFP via Getty Images

To dive in to the Masterclass on Building A Healthy And Happy Work Culture, become a Professional Member today. We'd also love to know any resources you've been using throughout the pandemic that could help others as life resumes some normality - let us know via Instagram @sustainable_fashion_collective or via email [email protected]