Building a Better Workplace

Michigan State University has a wealth of workplace assistance resources and services, but sometimes finding what you are looking for can be difficult. The WorkLife Office specializes in identifying and connecting MSU faculty and staff to the resources that might best fit their needs.

The WorkLife Office offers guidance for talking with supervisors about flexible work arrangements; recommendations for addressing conflict in the workplace; identifying MSU policies which may apply to your work setting; among others.

Our Workshops

Jaimie HutchisonWe would love to facilitate a session with your team.  Click here to request a session today!

Managing Stress at Work

There are ebbs and flows to the intensity of our work and stressors in our personal lives. Learn tools and strategies for identifying stressors, prioritizing responsibilities, and managing stress throughout your career. Participants will leave with an action plan for handling even the most stressful moments.

Click here for a recording of the session with captions (requires MSU NetID)

Busting the Myth of Work-Life Balance

In our fast-paced world, what is the secret to balancing all of our responsibilities? Well, there is no secret or fix-all answer, but there are strategies and tactics for helping to manage it all. In this interactive session, learn tips for striking a "balance" that works for you and your unique blend of responsibilities. This session will also provide tools for reducing work-life stress, understanding your own and your colleagues' work styles, and creating an environment that works for your whole work team.

Building Your Best Colleague

During busy or challenging times at work, people may say, "Just let me know if you need anything." Sometimes it feels like an empty offer for help. Other times it can be hard to figure out exactly what we need. Join us for an interactive presentation about building a strong community of colleagues. Find out how you can be a good colleague and how you can build a strong network of colleagues around you. That way, you'll know how to identify what you need and who can help you accomplish that goal.

Creating Flexible Work Arrangements as a Team

Flexible work arrangements can be a win-win for departments and employees. They can be a useful method to maintain unit service while supporting the personal needs of individuals on the team. This workshop can be adapted to small groups interested in learning about flex work, all the way to addressing the entire unit to help formulate a comprehensive arrangement for the whole team.

Grounding Strategies: Tools for Coping with Stress

Grounding strategies help you cope with stressful situations and help you strengthen your resilience. The strategies that will be covered in this session include: Gratitude, progressive muscle relaxation, optimism, visualization, guided imagery, mindfulness, focused breathing, meditation, and affirmations, mantras, and mottos. Grounding strategies are things you can do to bring yourself into contact with the present moment. They can be quick strategies or longer more formal exercises. Different strategies work for different people. By learning about them, you can find one that works for you!

Psychological Safety and Transparent Communication at Work: Strengthening Collaboration and Innovation

Employees need to feel psychologically secure and safe in their workplace to do their best work.  This type of workplace culture is increasingly important to encourage. Creating psychological safety in the workplace allows teams to create a trusting workplace and increase productivity. Transparent communication is a critical tool toward building trust and creating a workplace culture that has the foundation to allow psychological safety to flourish. Learn more about transparent communication and psychological safety which builds a climate that increases collaboration, innovation, and a positive work environment.

Customized Workshop

The WorkLife Office can design training programs to address the needs of your unit/group of any size. Workshops/presentations can range across a span of work-life topics. We will work directly with you to develop the session that is perfect for you and your team.

WorkLife Podcast

Jaimie Hutchison

Our podcast is recorded on the campuses of Michigan State University and is intended to be a resource for those who support the worklife mission, vision, and values.

We interview scholars, staff, and faculty throughout Michigan to hear a variety of perspectives on worklife issues and best practices, including but not limited to:

  • Outstanding Supervision
  • Exit Interviews
  • Leadership
  • Women's Networking
  • Flex Work Agreements
  • Childcare

Check out our podcast by searching Google for "MSU WorkLife Podcast" or go directly to the Apple Store and subscribe to our podcast for free!  If you have a topic you'd like to hear discussed on the podcast or if you'd like to be a guest, please email worklife@msu.edu

Play the WorkLife Podcast with Alexa

Apple Podcasts is now available on Alexa-enabled Amazon devices in the United States. You can say things to Alexa like:

  • “Alexa, play the MSU WorkLife Podcast on Apple Podcasts”
  • “Alexa, play the MSU WorkLife Podcast from yesterday on Apple Podcasts”
  • “Alexa, skip ahead 30 seconds”
  • “Alexa, play the previous episode”

Reflect and Connect

The Reflect and Connect series provides an opportunity for MSU faculty and staff to come together to examine the impacts of contemporary events/tragedies on work and personal lives and provides a space to explore best self-care-/work-effectiveness strategies.

Committee Members

Co-sponsored by MSU Office of the University Physician - Employee Assistance Program, Office for Inclusion and Intercultural Initiatives, Graduate Student Life and Wellness, and the WorkLife Office. 

  • Office of the University Physician - Employee Assistance Program: Nancy Allen
  • Graduate Student Life and Wellness: (vacant)
  • Office for Inclusion and Intercultural Initiatives: Audrey Bentley
  • WorkLife Office: Barbara Roberts and John Girdwood