Leadership, Well-being, and Thriving
What is Your Call to Action?
This statistic may surprise you:
“Only 22% of U.S. employees are engaged and thriving, according to the landmark 2013 Gallup study on the State of the American workplace.”
In our lives and at work, we all share the human condition. Although contexts may differ, it’s safe to say most of us want to thrive in our personal lives and our professions – and many of us are not flourishing in our workplaces. How many people do you know who go to work each day, but feel little commitment to their organization or its goals?
When we feel well, we are more able to work well. Personal well-being is an essential ingredient for thriving. Well-being has a strong impact on leaders, employees, teams, and organizations at all levels. And many of us are leaders or aspire to become leaders, whether in our workplaces, our teams, as volunteers, in our families, or simply as leaders in our own lives.
What is well-being?
Well-being refers to overall quality of life; well-being is essential to personal and professional functioning. Based on social science evidence, components of well-being can be described using the acronym PERMA (Seligman, 2011, Flourish).
Positive emotions (feeling good, life satisfaction)
Engagement (connection, vigor, dedication)
Relationships (family, friends, co-workers, community)
Accomplishment (achievement, contribution, effort, fulfillment)
How important is well-being at work?
“When employees are engaged and thriving in their overall lives, they are more likely to maintain strong work performance even during difficult times.”
– Gallup, State of the American Workplace, 2013
It’s becoming clearer to leaders and organizations that well-being is a cornerstone of working well and living well. Gallup’s findings boldly highlight evidence that creating a work environment in which people are engaged and thriving is of great importance, and also quite uncommon. The high level of disengagement at work is a call to action that highlights prioritizing well-being as a vital resource. Ultimately, individuals and organizations have the greatest opportunity to succeed when people are engaged and thriving.
Personal well being is not only a human need, it is a strategic resource. When employees and leaders thrive, the organizations in which they work also thrive.
Here are a few questions I offer my clients and use myself:
- 1. How do you currently strengthen your well-being (PERMA) in your personal life and as a leader?
- 2. How can you improve on what you are already doing to thrive in your leadership roles, at your workplace, and in your personal life?
- 3. How are you engaging well-being as a strategic leadership resource?
What is your call to action? What is your next step?
Resources you may find useful:
- Cameron, Kim (2012). Positive Leadership: Strategies for Extraordinary Performance. Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Inc., San Francisco.
- Gallup (2013). State of the American Workplace. http://www.gallup.
- Moorefield, R. (2016). Thriving Leaders. Retrieved from : https://coachfederation.org/
- Martin Seligman’s Talk on Character and PERMA. (September 2015). Retrived from: https://www.youtube.com/
- Seligman, M.E.P. (2011). Flourish: A Visionary New Understanding of Happiness and Well-being. Atria Paperback, NY.
- Seligman, M.E.P. (2011). Authentic Happiness. https://www.
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