07 May 2019

Taking care of business: strategies for optimising individual and organisational wellbeing, performance and productivity

Dr John Briffa, a leading authority on the optimisation of wellbeing, performance and resilience, looks ahead to his presentation at IOSH 2019

Commercial success is dependent on factors such as sound strategy, appropriate investment and good leadership. Another critical but sometimes-overlooked element is the wellbeing of the people in a business or organisation. Being able to sustain physical and mental performance, including in challenging environments, is key for all-manner of elements important for business success including engagement, execution, productivity and sustainability.

In reality, wellbeing issues are common in the workplace, and evidence shows they can take a considerable toll on productivity and profitability through factors such as absenteeism, ‘presenteeism’, engagement issues, lowered morale, increased staff turnover, and compromised sustainability. Just one of these issues – disengagement – roughly halves productivity compared to when individuals are enthusiastic about and involved in their work. Associated factors such as stress and sleep issues compound issues. RAND corporation has calculated that the cost to the UK economy of sleep issues alone is £38 billion annually. The bottom line is that wellbeing issues are common and a significant negative effect on the bottom line!

I am delighted to be speaking at IOSH 2019, and my session will explore these themes, as well as some of the key ways supporting employee wellbeing can enhance personal and organisational performance and sustainability. I’m privileged to have partnered with more than 100 organisations since 1996 to support employee wellness and resilience, and I’ve learned first-hand the approaches that have most impact in terms of engagement and traction, as well as methods that are well-meant but so often fall flat and are best avoided.

My session at IOSH 2019 serves a dual purpose, in that it will also reveal some simple and effective strategies for enhancing personal energy and effectiveness. There is plenty of ‘noise’ in this area, and my intention is to cut through the confusion, and bring clarity to an area which can sometimes be contentious and contradictory.

I’ll be exploring themes in the areas of nutrition, physical activity, sleep and psychology, and in each of these I’ll examine what science tells us about its relevance on wellbeing and performance: It’s been my overwhelming experience that individuals generally like to have things properly explained to them. It is only when the logical, rational part of the brain is satisfied that individuals feel motivated to make appropriate changes.

However, action is critical, and key here is for the strategies to be relatively easy to remember and apply in our daily lives. So, for each strategy explored in the session, I will reveal the genuinely practical steps anyone can take to boost their vitality, general wellbeing and resilience. These strategies are not just grounded in science, but have been tried-and-tested with literally thousands of individuals and shown to bring significant and consistent benefit.

At the end of the session you may well have one, two or more simple but effective strategies that you can use right away to benefit you personally. But you may also leave the session with ideas that you can take back with you into your organisation to support your people and the business as a whole.

About the speaker

Dr John Briffa MB BS BSc (hons) is a practising doctor, facilitator, keynote speaker and author specialising in the optimisation of wellbeing, performance and resilience. He is a prize-winning graduate of University College London Medical School, and the founder of Dr Briffa Wellness (

Since 1996, Dr Briffa Wellness has partnered with a wide range of organisations to optimise individual and organisational performance and sustainability via consultancy, training, facilitation and speaking services. Clients include Deloitte, PwC, Schroders, HSBC, Barclays, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Tesco, Allen & Overy, BBC, Thames Water, Irish Management Institute and IOSH.

Dr Briffa is a journalist and author of 9 books, including A Great Day at the Office – 10 simple strategies for maximising your energy and getting the best out of yourself and your day (4th Estate).

See Dr Briffa at IOSH 2019 by booking your ticket here, and making the most of our early-bird rate.


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