What happened when one of Britain’s fastest growing companies tackled the taboo and asked each employee how they felt about money?
Since the pandemic, money has become the number one cause of stress in the UK. Around 18 million adults worry about money every single day and 47 per cent of the population has never discussed a financial problem with anyone.
But it’s easy to assume the problem isn’t quite this bad in your own business, particularly if, like Octopus Group, you operate in the financial services sector. However, rather than make that assumption, the company decided to find out for themselves.
The company asked financial coaches to run free, anonymous, financial coaching sessions for all of their employees. More than two-thirds (67 per cent) of employees who were asked took part and here’s what was found.
Finding #1: Money was, by far, the number one cause of stress for employees. Three-quarters (75 per cent) said they have had difficulty focusing at work because of money stress and 83 per cent of people think about money at least every week.
Finding #2: More than two-thirds (35 per cent) of employees didn’t have three months of salaries saved for emergencies and 12 per cent had less than £,1000 in savings.
Finding #3: Majority (80 per cent) of employees did not have a will, including 63 per cent with families.
“That’s the wake-up call we needed,” said Simon Rogerson, chief executive and co-founder of Octopus MoneyCoach. “It became clear that financial wellbeing and financial security do not always come hand in hand, and money-related stress was clearly impacting on the performance of our employees and our business.”
The company now offers financial coaching to everyone (covering the cost for those at the start of their career). They also decided to buy the company that provided this coaching, which was already working with many of the UK’s most forward-thinking employers, and rebranded it Octopus MoneyCoach.