Cyber Wellness: How Prioritising Employee Well-Being Bolsters Cybersecurity

The Surprising Connection Between Wellness and Cybersecurity

Cyber-wellness generally encompasses understanding online conduct and heightened awareness of safeguarding and educating oneself digitally. It contains aspects such as preserving one's identity, adopting safe and responsible practices while using the internet, and effectively managing relationships online.

At Core to Cloud, we take this idea even further and explore the importance of supporting those within your cyber security teams and those that are a part of your cyber security processes within their wellness and the impact this has on the effects of your cyber security.

In essence, happy people do better, right? But within cyber security, its importance goes even further than that. Well-rested, motivated teams are critical in defending against cyber security attacks and stopping breaches quickly and efficiently. The more engaged your couple is, the easier it is for them to spot emerging threats within your IT Landscape.

Let's explore this more…

Wellness Monday: A Game-Changer in Employee Well-Being

Monday's can be a drag… and statistically, they are one of the most dreaded days within anyone's week. Understandable really? The weekend has drifted away, and your routine kicks back in.

Within Core to Cloud, we decided to turn Mondays into our day to promise our wellness initiative. We set sessions and encourage individuals to take charge of their physical and mental well-being.

There are so many benefits to this, but one of our favourites is that it brings together the team and team members who may not normally interact across the expanse of our HQ (some team members drift towards the darker areas with fewer windows, for example….). The positive impact of bringing together the teams to move and change up their Mondays has been incredibly noticeable, and we encourage you to do the same! 

Cyber Resilience Starts with Rested Minds

Employee fatigue significantly heightens susceptibility to cyber threats within an organisation. Fatigued individuals often experience decreased vigilance and diminished cognitive abilities, impacting their ability to promptly detect and respond to potential cyber threats. Complex and demanding work schedules, especially in cybersecurity, can lead to fatigue, impairing decision-making and situational awareness. 

Tired employees may overlook security protocols, fall for phishing scams, or neglect best practices, inadvertently creating security vulnerabilities. Mitigating employee fatigue through adequate rest, manageable workloads, and promoting a healthy work-life balance is crucial in bolstering an organisation's cybersecurity posture and reducing the risk of successful cyberattacks.

We have all been there, trying to stare at the screen and stay focused, but without a proper rest schedule and an environment that supports you to be as rested as possible, avoidable issues will begin to arise.

Leadership Impact: Toxic vs. Healthy Culture

Supporting employee wellness in cybersecurity is vital for fostering a resilient workforce, but it needs to be a "practice what you preach" situation. Leaders prioritising health cultivate a mental and physical well-being culture, reducing burnout and fatigue. Healthy employees are more likely to stay engaged, make sound decisions, and maintain a strong focus, which is crucial for effective cybersecurity. 

A wellness-oriented approach boosts morale, enhances teamwork, and encourages a proactive attitude towards security. Employees who feel supported are likelier to report incidents promptly, seek help, and stay updated on evolving threats. Investing in employee wellness is an investment in a robust cybersecurity posture. We need to remember that our teams support our cybersecurity processes and platforms… 

The Pitfalls of Hustle Culture in IT: Lessons for Cyber Resilience

The "hustle culture" within IT professionals and consultants has evolved due to various factors. The rapidly changing nature of technology requires IT professionals to constantly adapt, learn, and innovate to stay relevant in their field. This fast-paced environment often fosters a culture of continuous effort and dedication.

This is especially true within the cyber security sector, as emerging threats, technological changes, and the growth of hybrid workforces are constantly adding pressure to the IT Landscape. Individuals suffering from burnout within your team mean taps within your support system must be minimised to ensure overall security. 

From Anxiety to Cyber Resilience: The Brain-Body Connection

Stress plays an impactful role in our decision-making…

Those individuals who are stressed, tired and burnout within your team become vulnerabilities when it comes to emerging threats and opportunities for issues within your IT landscape.

Stress significantly impacts decision-making processes, affecting the brain and body. Chronic stress elevates cortisol levels, impairing the prefrontal cortex, linked to rational decision-making. It hampers attention, memory, and problem-solving abilities, leading to suboptimal choices. The amygdala becomes overactive, heightening emotional responses and promoting risk aversion or impulsivity. Stress also affects neurotransmitters like dopamine and serotonin, influencing reward and mood and potentially skewing judgment.

Additionally, prolonged or intense stress disrupts neural pathways crucial for sound decision-making, undermining cognitive functions and strategic thinking. Managing stress is vital for maintaining practical and rational decision-making capabilities for your team so you can be confident that they are making the best decisions to keep your core assets safe within your organisation.

Employee Well-Being as a Cybersecurity Asset

You have the best platforms, you have the best support from us at Core to Cloud, and you have SOPs covering all aspects of your cyber security landscape and contingency plans…. But you don't have an aware, well-rested team… 

The former starts to lose its power when you lose the asset of a supercharged team!

Your team is one of your organisation's l assets, and the same is true for all individuals who interact with and support your cyber security safety. Moving forward, you must consider their well-being a key component of your security strategy.

Cultivating Cyber Wellness: A Collective Responsibility

We all must get involved and promote a collective effort to prioritise employee well-being and cybersecurity within the organisation. No matter the role or hierarchy within an organisation, there needs to be a combined understanding of the need to prioritise cyber wellness as we do at Core To Cloud.

We encourage you to engage in continuous training sessions to educate employees about cyber threats and best practices while fostering a culture of well-being. These sessions inspire and create open communication channels where HR can address employee concerns, IT can provide cybersecurity guidance, and leadership can champion a healthy work environment.

By integrating these efforts, we ensure a safer digital landscape and a resilient, informed, and motivated workforce, benefiting both individuals and the organisation.

Conclusion: A Holistic Approach to Cybersecurity

A holistic approach to cybersecurity is imperative due to the interconnectedness and complexity of technological landscapes. Cyber threats constantly evolve, transcending traditional boundaries and expectations and keeping us all on our toes.

To ensure cyber safety and security, a comprehensive strategy considers technical aspects, human behaviour, organisational policies, and socio-technical interactions.

Cyber incidents impact not just data and systems but also an organisation's reputation, customer trust, and financial stability. A holistic approach ensures that cybersecurity is integrated into every facet of an organisation, fostering a proactive culture, well-informed employees, and resilient systems. It's an essential strategy to effectively mitigate risks and adapt to modern cyber threats' dynamic and sophisticated nature.

To stay current and informed, you can sign up for our C Suite Cyber newsletter; we promise to send only relevant information straight into your inbox! 

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