Since collapsing from exhaustion in 2007, Arianna Huffington has dedicated herself to addressing the burnout crisis across the global workforce. As CEO and founder of Thrive, a behavior change technology company, she has a deep understanding of how and why employees should prioritize their health.

Huffington, co-founder of The Huffington Post, now HuffPost, is the second guest for Season 2 of Microsoft’s WorkLab podcast, in which host Elise Hu has conversations with economists, technologists, and researchers who explore data and insights into why and how work is changing. This week, Colette Stallbaumer, general manager of Microsoft 365, sits in the host chair for this insightful conversation with Huffington.

Three key insights from their talk:

  1. To drive meaningful change, leaders must show they care about their team members as whole individuals. Try leading by example by asking thoughtful questions like, “How can I support you outside of work?” and creating an accommodating work environment in response.

  2. Taking intentional breaks can work wonders. In a pilot program between Thrive and Walmart call centers, in which calls exceeding 20 minutes directed frontline workers to a prompt asking them to take 60 seconds for themselves, Walmart employees reported lower levels of stress and feeling more valued.

  3. Sleep hygiene is important. Creating evening rituals and routines to transition to bed time helps demarcate our workday from our home life, which has been blurred by hybrid work. Science shows that the vast majority of people really do need between seven and nine hours of sleep a night.

To go deeper into the theme of intentionality, correspondent Mary Melton checks in at the end of the episode with Kate Nowak, a researcher at Microsoft who’s leading a team that’s improving the employee experience through product experimentation and incubation. She shares advice about how to create a more inclusive atmosphere in video meetings.

WorkLab is a place for experts to share their insights and opinions. As students of the future of work, Microsoft values inputs from a diverse set of voices. That said, the opinions and findings of the experts we interview are their own and do not reflect Microsoft’s own research or opinions.

Follow the show on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you get your podcasts.

Here’s a transcript of the Episode 2 conversation.

ELISE HU: This is WorkLab, the podcast for Microsoft. I’m your host, Elise Hu. On WorkLab, we hear from the leading thinkers on the future of work—economists, technologists, researchers. Throughout the season we’ll share surprising data and trends transforming the way we work.

ARIANNA HUFFINGTON: Because we’re living in this unprecedented time of greater anxiety and uncertainty, what worked in the past is not working now.

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Welcome to Season 2 of WorkLab: The Podcast

Join host Elise Hu and guests as they explore the latest trends and ideas to reimagine how we work