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5 Workplace Wellness Trends to Look for Heading into 2023

Mental wellness, hybrid work, and flexible schedules will remain important.
Photo: Shutterstock

Over the past 12 months, the working world has been flipped upside down. From starting the year with strict social distancing measures still in place to ending the year by reassuring employees it is safe to return to work, 2022 has been a year of dramatic changes. 

Heading into 2023, many of the workplace changes that started this year will gain momentum and become the new normal. Below is a list of the top five workplace wellness trends that Laura Putnam, a workplace wellbeing expert, an international public speaker, and author of Workplace Wellness That Works, expects to see in 2023.

  1. Hybrid Work Will Be Here to Stay. In 2022, millions of employees demanded greater flexibility in their work schedules, including the ability to work from home. With a tight labor market, employers will need to remain flexible and allow their employees to continue to work from home or risk the ability to attract and retain employees.
  2. The Rise of The Four-Day Work Week. Just as employees demanded control over where they work, in 2023, employees will begin demanding more control over when they work. Don’t be surprised if many companies introduce a four-day work week next year in a bid to remain competitive in the labor market.
  3. Mental Wellbeing Has Taken Center Stage. With rates of burnout, depression, and anxiety at record levels, many employees will expect their employers to make their mental wellbeing a priority next year. This will require employers to go beyond providing generous employee benefits packages and force companies to radically rethink how they can create a supportive work environment where employees feel safe and heard.
  4. The Labor Movement Will Grow. With employees still in the driver’s seat, they will continue to use their leverage to create stronger unions across many different sectors. In 2022, labor’s surge began to yield big victories, such as the union campaigns at Amazon and hundreds of Starbucks stores across the country. Petitions to file union elections shot up nearly 60 percent, and public approval of unions hit its highest point in half a century. This will likely lead to more protests, picket lines, and walkouts and force employers to provide employees with a greater say in their future.
  5. WellBeing Is a Shared Responsibility. CEOs are recognizing that employee wellbeing needs to be a strategic priority. As recently shared by Francis deSouza, CEO of Illumina, at a recent CEO roundtable hosted by Fortune and Salesforce: “Employee wellness is an imperative. It is one of the criteria that people use to choose a job and whether or not to stay at a job or not.” Alongside this rise in awareness on the importance of wellbeing at work, leaders also recognize that true wellbeing is a shared responsibility. Heading into 2023, more companies will begin to recognize that the overreliance on individual responsibility and accountability cannot withstand the effects of structural barriers to wellbeing, such as work overload, toxicity tolerated, and lack of inclusion. The only way forward is together.
About The Author
julieKeller_author-1

Julie is the co-founder of Well Defined and a longtime influencer and advocate in the wellness world. Along with her work at Well Defined, she is an executive recruiter and marketing specialist for Hutchinson Consulting. She is also a consultant and content strategist for numerous wellness brands. She is the former editor-in-chief and publisher of American Spa and was named a 2019 Folio Top Woman in Media in the Industry Trailblazers category and a 2018 winner of ISPA’s Innovate Award. She is also a seasoned journalist, specializing in spa, travel, health, fitness, wellness, sustainability, and beauty. She has been published in Departures, ForbesTraveler.com, E! Online, Gayot.com, Insider’s Guide to Spas, Luxury Travel Advisor, Marin Magazine, Ocean Home, Smart Meetings, Spa Asia, and Travel Agent.