Managing to Hold the Workforce Ship Steady in current times of stress.

Maggie Williams, Executive Coach at Thriving Hives

Reading a Q & A recently with Dr Nick Taylor, CEO and CO- Founder of Unmind he points out that the main challenge for organisations today is supporting the wellbeing of their workforce through this difficult time. Even though they still have their jobs, their work-life balance has been severely disrupted. People’s personal and professional lives have become blurred and the roles we play have increased. We now wear the hats of carer, teacher, community supporter.

In years gone by, innovation and research and development has been top of the agenda for most forward thinking organisations, and now the focus is plainly on keeping a steady workforce. In the face of so much uncertainty, organisational and individual resilience is what’s required.

Here are some strategies that Dr Tim advised regarding helping your organisation stay well:

  1. Employees need the right care at the right time. Realise the importance of proactive and therefore preventative mental health support as opposed to operating reactively.
  2. Take a whole person approach to mental health, – caring for not only the psychological health, but also the social and physical wellbeing, as our working lives and personal lives have become intertwined.
  3. Utilise digital means to support particularly with our dispersed and remote working teams that we now operate, so the workforce can access good mental health support wherever they are and whenever they wish.

In these times we need to call on some of our Emotional Intelligence competencies. The most useful ones that we need right now are:

Emotional Literacy: Expressing ourselves practices our emotional literacy and when we express how we are feeling, research shows that the emotion can reduce by 50% thus reducing our anxiety.

Recognising our Patterns: If we take time out to identify patterns in ourselves, we can then co-opt the right mechanisms or strategies to by-pass patterns that are not working for us, and use our strengths to guide us through.

Navigating our Emotions: this requires using our resilience tools. Never be afraid to ask for help when you feel anxious, or offer an ear when you see someone struggling.

Empathy: using compassion for others always brings us a feeling of well-being that we have helped others.

Utilising these competencies above will help you maintain your wellbeing during the coming year.

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