Published in Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine

Author(s): Hao Wu, PhD, Lindsay E. Sears, PhD, Carter R. Coberley, PhD, and James E. Pope, MD

Objective: To study the effects of overall well-being and well-being change on six supervisor-rated indicators of employee performance valued by organizations: overall performance, accountability,customer service, innovation, prosocial behavior, and self-development.

Methods: The current study used two waves of well-being survey data collected over 2 years and supervisor performance ratings for 5691 employees. Ordinary least squares regression was conducted.

Results: Both well-being at baseline and two-year change in well-being were related to all six supervisor-rated performance dimensions, controlling for other employee characteristics

Conclusions: Overall well-being likely functioned as a resource enabling people to successfully perform across the specific areas highly valued by their company. Given this connection, well-being interventions could be used as a means to accomplish improved performance in dimensions that contribute to organizational performance.

Key Takeaways:

  • Participants who had higher levels of well-being at baseline were more likely to receive higher supervisor ratings in overall performance, accountability, customer service, innovation, prosocial behavior, and self-development two years later.
  • Participants whose well-being increased over time tended to receive higher supervisor ratings in all six performance areas than people who were worsened in their well-being.
  • People whose well-being stayed the same over 2 years received higher supervisor ratings in four out of six performance areas compared to people whose well-being decreased (i.e., accountability, customer service, prosocial behavior, and self-development).
  • These results supported the idea that employees’ well-being and well-being change were tied to behaviors that are thought to drive competitive advantage and profitability for this organization.