How to create kinder, more inclusive communities and workplaces this Feel Good February

Friday, 22 January 2021

Everyone can use more kindness in their lives.

That’s the purpose of Feel Good February – to uplift communities and encourage everyone to take on a random act of kindness during February (and beyond!).

The last year has been tough for businesses all around the globe. But out of all that madness and chaos, a kindness pandemic has emerged. Be it in the way we do business or how we interact with our neighbours, a new normal of kindness, understanding, inclusivity, and collaboration is arising.

Looking ahead, businesses, employers, and employees all have an opportunity to shape this new normal into something permanent, and where better to start than Feel Good February?

To get you started, here are 21 random acts of kindness – choose one to conquer each workday of Feel Good February. Even better, challenge yourself to keep it up for the rest of the year.

Prioritise employee mental health

Workplace mental health and wellbeing is no half-hearted commitment. It’s a culture of kindness and inclusivity that is ingrained into everything you do, every day of the week.

But there are still some simple steps you can take to show a colleague that you care about them and their mental health. Below are 10 random acts of kindness designed to help you help your team. Challenge yourself to complete at least one random act of kindness each day. What is more, is to try to make it a habit.

Ten random acts of kindness for positive mental health

  1. Give three genuine, meaningful compliments to people today. Try to think of compliments that extend beyond someone’s physical appearance.
  2. Offer your support to someone who is struggling.
  3. Listen without judgement. Respond with kindness.
  4. Respond thoughtfully to emails and phone calls as soon as you’re able to.
  5. Invite someone to coffee or lunch. Use this as an opportunity to create a stronger connection with them.
  6. Send someone a positive and caring email first thing this morning.
  7. Say hello to at least five people today.
  8. Talk to a colleague about something other than work. Share your passions and learn more about theirs.
  9. Check-in with someone. Ask, “Are you okay?” Or just talk about life and focus on the things they’re comfortable with.
  10. Open-up and be vulnerable. When someone close to you asks how you’re doing, be honest. Show there is nothing to be ashamed of when talking about mental health.
Two people sit drinking coffee and laughing
Grabbing coffee with a colleague is a great way to debrief and relax.

Support communities in need

Corporate social responsibility is all about ethical, sustainable business practice. From the suppliers you use to the people you hire, every little detail adds up.

A bout of businesses supporting businesses rose up during 2020. Many of these individuals and companies went above and beyond with amazing acts of kindness and support for their local community.

Supporting communities in need is one of the simplest ways that your business can give back to its community and extend kindness beyond the four walls of the office or store. Although corporate social responsibility is so much bigger than just one person, there are some small things that you can do at your workplace to get the ball rolling.

Seven random acts of kindness for kinder communities

  1. Create a team building event that helps your community.
  2. Support local businesses. Buy your morning coffee from the local vendor.
  3. Start donation Friday. Choose a charity and encourage everyone to donate a gold coin. In return, all staff get to wear casual clothing for the day. Swap out the charity each week.
  4. Remind everyone to recycle. Make sure recycling bins are available to everyone. Create a poster to explain exactly what is recyclable.
  5. Buy Fairtrade. Take note of which products are Fairtrade when stocking the kitchen. This simple change can have a big impact on farmers, their families, and the environment.
  6. Create a volunteer day. Give all employees one additional day of annual leave each year dedicated to volunteering somewhere in the local community.
  7. Donate unneeded items. That empty desk that has been sitting in the corner of the office for the last 12 months? Donate it to a local business in need.
A group of people stocking donation boxes
Starting a donation box is a simple and very effective way to give back to communities in need.

Foster diversity and inclusion

Last year we saw businesses jump on board with flexible work and accessible learning. But why stop here? There are so many more simple ways companies can foster diversity and inclusion in their workplace.

Four random acts of kindness to promote inclusion and understanding

  1. Create a space for talking. Education and understanding are the first steps toward creating more diverse and inclusive communities. Take a moment to listen and learn about someone else’s culture or disabilities.
  2. Change-up your workplace design. Accommodations don’t have to be costly. It can be as simple as adjusting the lighting, printing signs with larger font sizes, installing a chair at the checkout, or making more space between desks and in corridors for people to move. The only way to know for sure is to ask.
  3. Lunch and learn. Set aside a lunch break to sit down with your colleagues and participate in a disability or mental health awareness workshop.
  4. Be mindful in your communication. This includes using the right pronouns, avoiding strange acronyms or jargons when speaking with people who have a different first language, and considering alternative resources such as Braille, audio descriptions, subtitles, sign language interpreters, and large print. If you are unsure, ask.

Connect with a provider that will put your business first

Are you ready to take the next step towards inclusion and diversity? For over 30 years EPIC Assist has been helping businesses to hire people with disability for roles in their organisation.

We understand that it can be difficult to know where to start when hiring people with disability for the first time. We make it easy by getting to know your business, connecting you with job-ready staff, and staying with you on the journey for as long as you need.

Get in touch with us today to find out how our free diverse and inclusive business solutions can benefit you.

EPIC job seeker Renee Eades sits at a desk

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