Are you Feeling Good? Wellbeing Matters…
Wellbeing is gaining momentum and slowly but surely entering into conversations around business and property. Privately, people value and recognise it but it has not yet translated into business and value decision making.
The Feeling Good Foundation – a not-for profit organisation set up to discover, develop and mainstream knowledge about what enhances health and wellbeing in the built environment – recognises wellbeing as a core metric in our lives. We know it matters but does the property industry recognise it? Do agents, developers or investors believe that wellbeing has a role in the design, marketing or management of property assets?
Wellbeing is increasingly being acknowledged as a valid yardstick in public policy. The UK government began to collect data on ‘national wellbeing’ in 2011, as a complement to existing financial and economic measures of the nation’s progress. In support, The Feeling Good Foundation was recently asked to insert a set of wellbeing questions into the ‘Autumn 2013 Estates Gazette/Grosvenor Estates Sentiment Survey’, and the results of which have been analysed in the white paper ‘Wellbeing Matters – Assessing views on the impact of the built environment on wellbeing’.
The survey of 365 property professionals demonstrates a heartening level of support for wellbeing as a viable and useful way of evaluating the built environment. A convincing 80% of survey respondents agreed that it would be useful to develop a metric with the ability to measure the impact of the physical working environment on the performance and wellbeing of its occupants.
Insights from the feedback highlight that to effectively communicate the wellbeing message to the industry, there is a need to develop a common language and definition for wellbeing in the built environment. More research is also required for areas where there is discrepancy between perceptions and true impacts of work place design issues. Overall there was strong support for the use of a tool within the office and residential sector, where a ‘wellbeing indicator’ could be used to support the building selection process, investment valuation and as a useful marketing tool.
Views from the survey give no doubt that wellbeing does, ultimately, lead to improved financial and commercial value, but there was concern to promote a wider understanding of that value. The current method of using cost benefit analysis to quantify wellbeing into a singular, financial value is a pattern that The Feeling Good Foundation seeks to break in future.
To download a copy of the white paper Wellbeing Matters, click here.
For more information on The Feeling Good Foundation and to find out about activities, working groups and future publications please checkout www.feelinggoodfoundation.org
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