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Ben Moss

Ben Moss

Ben joined Robertson Cooper in 2001 as a Business Psychologist. He then went on to become a product development psychologist, working on the design of many of Robertson Cooper’s products – including the original design of ASSET, our measure of wellbeing and engagement. From there he became Product Development and Marketing Manager where he started the process of building a market-focused function capable of building the products that the market was looking for at the time. In 2007 he became Director of Business Development and Marketing - and was tasked with building a professional team that could promote the company and develop mutually beneficial long-term relationships with clients.

Following success in that role Ben was appointed as Managing Director in April 2010. His remit is to grow the business and take Robertson Cooper to the next level – in terms of connecting with the market, partners and the wider community. Ben provides leadership, strategy and direction for the company, and has board level responsibility for business development. He works with our team, external partners and investors to create a bright future for the business.

Who needs Work-Life Balance anyway?

Posted by on in Work-life Balance

Last month, The Independent reported that France is considering legislation, which would encourage employees to disconnect from work emails at home at the end of their working day. This is part of a continued effort to achieve greater work-life balance for the nation, after introducing what was seen as the pioneering idea of the 4 day working week for public sector workers several years ago.

If France is successful in passing this new law (and maybe also if it isn’t!), it will inevitably spark debate around whether or not this is the most effective way to achieve work-life balance. One would certainly be tempted to ask the question, ‘Is that really all we need to do then… stop accessing work emails at home?!’

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In the world of workplace wellbeing the focus is so often on physical or mental health, but the ideas of ‘social health’ and ‘social connectedness’ have been gaining much more currency of late. At their heart, these concepts are about our social networks and what they provide us with – whether that be confidence, support, knowledge, health or something else! But both inside and outside of work we have a choice to accept the networks we find ourselves in or to work more proactively to create strong connections, which are more likely to help us to achieve our goals and, what’s more, feel better while we’re doing it!

Of course, businesses have a responsibility here too, because just as employers are responsible for creating a working environment and support systems that maximise the chances of good physical and mental health, they are also responsible for creating the conditions for social health. Whether it involves providing the time and space for social connection and social activities to take place (and by extension, giving employees permission) or whether it’s more about facilitating employee voice and connections to the wider community; employers have to play their part.

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Over the last half a century or so Bhutan, often cited as one of the happiest nations in the world, has undergone some serious structural changes politically. These changes started back in 1952 when the country started to break with the traditional, benevolent monarchy that has governed for centuries, and move towards a modern democracy. The citizens of Bhutan cast the deciding vote in a referendum and the country's first parliamentary elections were held in 2008.

But that doesn't mean it's been easy. Bhutan’s citizens may have voted for democracy, but initially it was difficult for them to evaluate whether they truly liked the changes that brought. In short, they were (understandably) institutionalised to living in a benevolent autocracy – so they had no benchmark of democracy against which to compare their new situation. They only knew rulers who held absolute power – how should they now relate to political leaders who were accountable to them personally at the ballot box? Quite a mind-set shift for anyone to make! 

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Tuesday 2nd June was National Leave Work Early Day. Employee productivity specialist Laura Stack launched this national almost-holiday in America in 2004 when she became concerned that employees in the US worked about 49 hours a week on average.

In the spirit of highlighting the importance of better work-life balance for employees and employers, we are encouraged to finish all our tasks and, with the necessary permission, leave the office earlier than normal. A laudable aim that, 11 years later, is still as relevant now as it was back then – maybe even more so.

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The author Kurt Vonnegut was a man with a singular and unique view of the world. Not just in his stories, either; his literary theories are similarly simple at face value, but gently unfurl to reveal deeper meaning and undercurrents of social commentary. The man himself called one particular theory, his rejected master’s thesis on the shapes of stories, his “prettiest” contribution to culture.

 Vonnegut’s idea is that the main character within any story lives through positive and negative experiences that can be plotted to a graph. The shape of the resulting line, he says, is a reflection of societal culture that can tell us just as much from an anthropological perspective as studying pots, spearheads or hieroglyphics.

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Cary CooperGood Day at Work™

The new wellbeing resources hub founded by @profcarycooper and Roberston Cooper. Join for FREE and access blogs, videos, downloads, podcasts and more.

Ben MossBen on Twitter

MD of Cary Cooper's business psychology firm, Robertson Cooper - for all things wellbeing, engagement and resilience at work.

Cary CooperCary on Twitter

Professor Cary Cooper, Director and Founder of Robertson Cooper Ltd, Distinguished Professor of Organizational Psychology and Health at Manchester Business School.

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