Melinda is a psychologist and dancer with 15 years of coaching experience She recently joined the Swiss healthcare company MED4LIFE AG as a Chief People Officer. Melinda is passionate about fulfilling human potentials, wellbeing, and preventive health measures. At MED4LIFE she can follow her passion and is responsible for creating and maintaining a supportive and healthy work culture where employees can unfold their potentials. Melinda is a vital force for the healthcare company and uses her psychological knowledge as well as her coaching experience to help co-workers build self-confidence and convey the beauty of authentic self-growth.
We caught up with her in preparation for her involvement in the Wellbeing at Work Summit Europe which takes place from 23-25 May live and in-person in Amsterdam & Zurich to find out why she is so passionate about wellbeing at work and why she is looking forward to the Summit.
We are thrilled that you will be speaking at our Wellbeing at Work Europe Summit in May. Our first and most important question is, how are you doing today?
Thank you, I am also very excited to speak at the event. Thank you for the invitation! I am doing fine, I can slowly breathe again after an overwhelming phase in my life. It’s time to focus on WELLBEING now. 😉
As a leader based in the region, what are the main challenges you are facing when it comes to employee wellbeing?
I am facing two challenges on a regular basis. Firstly, there is a contradiction between the quantity and quality of work I need to manage. The large volume of work limits my ability to engage in meaningful conversations with my employees, which is something I would like to invest more time and energy in. Secondly, I am uncertain about how much responsibility I should take for the health and wellbeing of my
employees. Will they proactively schedule appointments if they need to talk to me or someone else, or do I need to provide more opportunities for conversations? This is difficult to manage because of time constraints.
What strategies have you seen developing in Europe over the past 6-12 months to address health and wellbeing in the workplace?
Over the past 6-12 months, there have been several strategies emerging in Europe to address health and wellbeing in the workplace. One trend is the implementation of flexible working models and workload, which allows employees to better balance their work and personal lives. Another strategy is the promotion of democracy within the company, giving employees more of a voice in decision-making processes.
Additionally, there is a growing focus on ensuring that job profiles fit the individual’s skills and personal profile, which can lead to greater job satisfaction and employee engagement. Companies are also giving employees more responsibility and trust, which can improve motivation and job performance. Finally, there is a trend towards less top-down control and a greater emphasis on collaboration and teamwork.
Why is employee wellbeing so important to you personally?
Because mental and physical wellbeing is the key for many things: living a qualitative life, self-realization, building & maintaining qualitative relationships, long-term success etc. We all deserve to be healthy and happy, and we are stronger together as a society.
What are you most looking forward to about the Summit in May?
I believe that attending networking events or conferences can be valuable for several reasons. Firstly, it provides an opportunity to learn from the experiences of others in your field or industry, which can help you to gain new perspectives and insights.
Secondly, it allows you to expand your professional network and make connections with like-minded individuals who are also passionate about the mission you are fighting for. Finally, it can be a powerful way to feel a sense of community and shared purpose, which can be motivating and inspiring. Overall, I think attending such events can be a great way to grow both personally and professionally.
Tell us, what is your vision for the workplace of the future, in terms of employee engagement, health and wellbeing?
My vision for the workplace of the future is one where EVERYONE in the organization is coached to become authentic and empathetic, and where employees feel passionate about their work. The workplace should prioritize employee health and wellbeing by implementing policies and practices that promote wellness.
What areas do you think employers should be focused on over the next 12-18 months?
They should focus on their acts. Their acts should be aligned with their core values. They should trust in the process of success that if they do so, financial success is going to be the fruit/result of their actions. Acting out of fear is a compensational strategy which often ruins the long-term success. Furthermore, employers should focus on coaching their employees in responsibility, authenticity, self-acceptance, and -trust. Why is that important? Because I think, most of the people are capable of much more than they believe they are.
How has your organisation been leading the way?
MED4LIFE is exemplary in terms of its visions, philosophy, flexibility, job & personal profile fit, little top-down control, and personal & professional growth support. The only issue I see sometimes Is that some decisions are not always based on our core values but on a short-term solution instead. I have called this a compensational strategy above. An example would be reducing the number of employees when it
comes to financial shortage instead of investing in their salary and trusting that their work will bring success).
Melinda will be speaking in Zurich at the Wellbeing at Work Summit Europe that takes place both live and in-person in Amsterdam & Zurich and virtually for the wider region. Further details on the Summit can be found here.