20 January, 2020

Beating Blue Monday at M&S

It’s no surprise that the month of January can make anyone feel a bit lacklustre following the frivolities of its neighbour month December. The third Monday of January has even been named the saddest day of the year! But as a workplace, M&S fully supports and inspires its colleagues to ensure that feeling doesn’t stick around.

M&S has introduced loads of wellbeing activities this month to help colleagues feel their best mentally and physically. Take our BEAT Blue Monday Mindfulness practice resource, or our exciting event with guest speaker Will King – a Wellness expert at our Health and Wellbeing Partners, PAM delivering a special seminar for M&S Colleagues on mental wellbeing; including managing stress, staying motivated at work and exercises for your brain. New weekly yoga classes have also been introduced at Waterside Support Office and our Salford Quays colleagues are being treated to uplifting pop songs by a community choir, wellbeing walks and special guest appearances from two hard-working (and very cute) guide dogs.

But Wellbeing is not just a priority for January. At M&S we prioritise the wellbeing of our colleagues all year round, whether that’s helping new starters settle in and feel confident that they are being fully supported, or working with colleagues who have been with the business a long time to ensure they feel their best.

Since forming our partnership with PAM, all M&S colleagues are offered free and confidential support for mental health, physical health, financial wellbeing, occupational health or concerns with relationships, stress, work, family, raising children, infertility, miscarriage, anxiety, post-natal depression, redundancy, starting a new job, alcohol or drug abuse or long term or terminal illness.

We are also big on colleague to colleague support at M&S which is why we have a number of support groups and networks including our Buddy Network which focuses on supporting those with disabilities or illness; our BAME network for everyone who is passionate about making M&S an inclusive place to work, regardless of race or ethnicity; our Gender Equality Network which aims to drive awareness, as well as improving the female talent pipeline to drive better gender balance in senior roles; our LGBTQ+ Network which is committed to promoting equality, celebrating diversity and encouraging everyone across our entire organisation to be themselves; and our Veterans Network who are a community of ex-forces personnel and those interested in M&S’s commitment to The Armed Forces Corporate Covenant who aim to raise awareness of veterans in our workplace and support business wide activities relating to the Armed Forces community.

As a business we really are committed to supporting all our colleague’s wellbeing and to promoting an environment where we can talk openly about any issues colleagues are experiencing as well as knowing where to get support and advice. Because we know that it’s our people who are at the heart of making M&S successful.

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