How can leaders contribute to developing both performance and well-being?
Performance and well-being are often viewed as incompatible. Organizations tend to reinforce thisnatural tension by dealing with these two subjects separately.
For Renault’s International HR Convention, Patricia Fouache, from Labor Relations wanted to introduce new QWL dimensions and go beyond the standard organizational aspects. She was looking for an innovative approach, capableof making the link between performance and QWL, while being publicly acceptable among HR managers.
As a result of SOL’s “Body at work” conference, she asked Pierre Goirand and Hubert Nègre to design customized workshops.
QWL, Quality of Life – Here and Now
The Renault workshops explored the question of personal accountability in terms of quality of life. Everyone has an impact on their own quality of life as well as that of those around them. Consciously or unconsciously, we all influence eachother. We all are subject to the ambience around us and at the same time we constantly contribute to it. In organizations, we experience this daily. All you have to do is walk into a meeting room to get a feel for the overall atmosphere; it’s physical. We can leave a meeting frustrated or fired up, and that will affect the rest of the day.
So,what if, instead of just going along with what’s going on around us, we decide to positively influencethe quality of life in our immediate environment? Every contact, whether it’s shaking someone’s hand, listening or talking, generates a sensation. We can, therefore,deliberately change the quality of each contactonce we cultivate awareness of our own state of being and learn how to change it. QWL starts with the quality of our living experience here and now.We can influence it by learning to manage our state.
QWL – a managerial responsibility
Even thougheveryone influences the QWL in their environment, the team leader’s position of power brings with it a higher level of responsibility. In the workshop, HR managers shared, from their own experiences, their diagnoses,both personal and collective,in terms of QWL. We analyzed the repeated occasions when during the day, the participants, as leaders, influence the QWL in their team. This revealed that QWL is not only the result of organizational decisions but alsothe quality of presence of each manager.
The participants discovered how they can use their body to shift their state and how that changes their impact. Onebig ‘Aha’ of the workshop was the revelation of the body’s crucial role at work : this is nowanew innovative field for Renault to explore.