‘If managers aren’t thriving, the organisation won’t be either,’ managing director says

Insurance managers have been trying to do “more with less” as professionals saw a rise in their workload.

That was according to Robert Ordever, European managing director of O.C Tanner, who told Insurance Times that a rise in work could impact mental health and peoples’ ability “to be happy in other areas of their lives”.

Earlier in 2023, O.C Tanner collected and analysed the perspectives of over 36,000 employees, leaders, HR practitioners and business executives from 20 countries around the world, including 606 from the insurance sector.

The employee recognition software company’s Global Culture report revealed that 46% of insurance managers surveyed said that their responsibilities had increased since the Covid-19 pandemic began, a statement in March said.

And 23% found it more difficult to stay positive at work, it added.

Ordever said that if managers were not thriving, “the organisation won’t be either”.

He said: “[Managers] are trying to do more with less but there’s a tipping point, with their mental health the ultimate casualty. 

“Employee engagement is also inevitably impacted as managers are the vital link in the chain when it comes to nurturing belonging and purpose for their teams and ultimately helping to shape culture.

”If managers are immersed in their own personal struggles, they are simply less able to look out for their teams, support them day-to-day and inspire them to perform great work, with the overall culture becoming increasingly damaged.”

‘Feeling ignored’

While Ordever acknowledged that “it may not be possible to remove extra workload for managers”, he stressed the importance for organisations to “provide support and leadership strategies”.

He added: “Recognising managers’ efforts and results is also crucial for ensuring they feel appreciated and ‘seen’, with a culture of integrated recognition reducing burnout by 80%,

“Forcing changes on managers, that are likely to give them extra work to do, will only result in them feeling ignored and taken for granted, exacerbating anxiety and stress.”

Ordever added that increasing a “thriving” culture of appreciation in the workplace could reduce employee attrition by 29%.

“Organisations must strive towards a culture of appreciation in which recognition is integrated into the everyday employee experience,” he added.