National Program for Happiness and Wellbeing Launches Business for Wellbeing Council

National Program for Happiness and Wellbeing Launches Business for Wellbeing Council

Dubai, 18 December 2019: The National Program for Happiness and Wellbeing announced the launch of the ‘Business for Wellbeing Council’, a new public-private partnership initiative in the UAE that aims to enhance workplace wellbeing in the private sector. The council is comprised of eight leading national and multinational enterprises operating across various sectors.

Her Excellency Ohood bint Khalfan Al Roumi, Minister of State for Happiness and Wellbeing, Director General of the Prime Minister’s Office stated that the initiative comes in support to the efforts to achieve the objectives of the National Strategy for Wellbeing issued last June by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, which targets the enhancement of wellbeing at the workplace in the UAE.

HE Al Roumi affirmed that the National Program for Happiness and Wellbeing is keen on on creating an platform that cements the active partnership between the government and the private sector for the purpose of promoting wellbeing in the workplace across the UAE. HE indicated that the National Strategy for Wellbeing focuses on the improvement of Wellbeing in societies, including the wellbeing in the workplace across all various sectors and industries.

Her Excellency added that the within its efforts to enhance awareness on wellbeing in the workplace, the National Program for Happiness and Wellbeing worked on training 500 government employee, enhance the tops and required to enable them to successful launch their wellbeing initiatives at the workplace.

Al Roumi reiterated that the private sector is a main and active part of the UAE economic and social construct. It is important that the enhancement of wellbeing in the workplace is addressed in partnership with the business sector, and that the understanding of wellbeing is promoted within the private sector in a manner that supports its performance and boost its productivity.

Her Excellency expressed her gratitude toward the founding members of the Business for Wellbeing Council, praising their high sense of initiative in being part of the council. She also extended the invitation business in the UAE private sector to join the council.

Eight Founding Members

The eight members of the Business for Wellbeing Council represent the following organisations: Majid Al Futtaim Group, Landmark Group, Emirates NBD, Etihad Airways, Aldar Properties, Emirates Airlines, Unilever and Cisco. The companies employ over 250,000 employees combined, operate in over 12 sectors and generate revenues of excess of AED 200 billion annually.

On council’s first meeting, members discussed future plans and required methods to enhance wellbeing at workplace practices. They also discussed the mechanism to be set to fulfill the council’s goals and objectives of enhancing wellbeing in the workplace in the UAE private sector, which employs over five million people.

The Council will serve as an interactive hub for both government and private sectors, and work to shape the future of workplaces in the UAE and strengthen the UAE’s position as a knowledge hub for wellbeing best practices via a fully integrated scientific methodology.

Through the council’s engagement platform, members will work on identifying and sharing best practices and innovative approaches to promote wellbeing. The council will also build a showcase that demonstrates their respective organisations experiences and case studies, designed to inspire other companies and businesses to follow suit. The council will also serve as a testing lab for wellbeing programs, practices and policies, that can advance discussions and accelerate wellbeing practices. 

Council Members: UAE Is Pioneering Wellbeing at the Workplace Practices

Members of the Business for Wellbeing Council assured that the council is considered a milestone in the efforts to develop new initiatives and models to enhance wellbeing at the workplace, which in turn, supports achieving the National Strategy on Wellbeing 2031.

Alain Bejjani: Developing New Corporate Workplace Models to elevate Wellbeing

Alain Bejjani, Chief Executive Officer at Majid Al Futtaim Holding commented: “The UAE’s ‘Business for Wellbeing Council’ will establish a great platform for public and private organisations to exchange cross-industry best practices and define the future of workplaces. We are extremely proud to continue to play an active role in making the UAE one of the happiest countries in the world.”

Nisha Jagtiani: Committed to Enhance Wellbeing at the Workplace Practices

“This partnership is embodying our commitment towards the National Strategy on Welling and enhancing Happiness and Wellbeing in the Workplace, to further impact the communities and the people of UAE. We look forward to new learning, adding value and bringing in a positive change in the Workplace,’’ said Nisha Jagtiani, Group Director of Landmark Group

At Landmark Group, we have a diverse workforce of 55,000 people, including 88 nationalities across 24 countries and their wellbeing remains our top priority in the company’s plans and strategy to enhance happiness and wellbeing in the workplace.

Hesham Al Qassim: Workplace Enhancement and Employee Empowerment in a Collaborative and Continued Learning Corporate Environment

Hesham Abdulla Al Qassim – VP and Managing Director of EmiratesNBD Bank said: “The sustainability of our organisation depends highly on the prosperity, wellbeing and development of our most valuable asset, our people. We ensure that our employees are given the opportunity to thrive in the workplace by creating a culture which celebrates openness, collaboration, continuous learning and a holistic work-life balance. We facilitate the continual growth of our employees both personally and professionally, by offering a wealth of learning and development programmes, building life-long skills and expertise. By creating a positive and empowering work environment for employees, this, in turn, contributes to a dedicated and results-focused workforce.”

Tony Douglas: A Unique Opportunity for Knowledge and Experience Sharing between Government and Private Sectors

“We are very proud to be one of the founding members of the UAE Wellbeing Council, with senior executive representation. At Etihad, our employees are the heart and soul of the company, and to prioritise them we have put in place a robust set of wellbeing practices, programmes and engagement campaigns aimed at building a healthier work environment. This is a great opportunity for Etihad to collaborate with the Minister of State for Happiness and Wellbeing and the UAE government, and believe that the knowledge exchange with our partners will help us to achieve our shared goal of creating a stronger wellbeing," added Tony Douglas, Etihad Aviation Group Chief Executive Officer

Talal Al Tayabi: Cornerstone of Social initiatives to Enhance Workplace Wellbeing

Talal Al Tayabi, CEO of Aldar Properties added that the council resembles building the cornerstone of societal initiatives to enhance wellbeing at the workplace. “We are proud to be a founding member of the Business for Wellbeing Council and we are committed to creating vibrant communities that enrich peoples’ lives, and this extends to the lives of our valued employees. We look forward to working closely with the Council, sharing our successes and learning from others.”

Adel Al Redha: Elevating Workplace Wellbeing is Essential for Business Success

Adel Al Redha, Emirates’ Chief Operating Officer said: “Employee wellbeing is fundamental to the success of any business, and it’s something we care deeply about at the Emirates Group. We have numerous initiatives that supports the physical and emotional health of our workforce, and we continue to promote a culture of wellbeing through our ‘Sehaty’ programme.

Emirates is pleased to join the Business for Wellbeing Council as a founding member, and we look forward to working with the Council to promote and drive forward practices that support workplace wellbeing.”

Sanjiv Kakkar: Focusing on Active Lifestyle and Mental Health

“In a fast-changing world, health and well-being are key for the personal growth and development of our employees, as a well as our organisation’s growth. Through our well-being framework we are addressing the physical, mental, and emotional well-being of our employees, as well as their sense of purpose,” said Sanjiv Kakkar, Executive Vice-President Unilever Middle East, North Africa, Turkey, Russia, Ukraine and Belarus.

Shukri Eid: Programs to Enhance Personal Development and Individual Health

Shukri Eid, Managing Director, Gulf Region, Cisco said “At Cisco we have been working closely with the UAE government to support its inspiring initiatives to support wellbeing, via a series of global and local initiatives that are geared towards championing personal development and fostering a sense of community amongst our employees. Cisco has been recognized for our efforts by ranking first in the World’s 25 Best Workplaces list published by the Great Place to Work institute.”