Covid-19 has brought many changes to all of our work lives. Whether we are on the fronline or working remotely it is certainly having an impact on all of our mental health.
Now more than ever its important to create a workplace culture where everyone feels supported and comfortable asking for help. Whether you are a colleague or a manager there are several things we can do to help our team feel supported.
Being busy it can be easy to want to get straight to business but checking in with each other can really help us feel cared about. Some examples are:
- How are you feeling today?
- Are you taking your regular breaks?
- How are you coping with the added pressure/stress?
- Is there anything our workplace can put in place to help?
- What support do you have outside of work?
If you are a manager regularly check in with how staff are doing. Be sure to let your team know that you are available if they want to chat. They may not take you up on the offer, but the thought can go a long way in helping individuals feel supported.
A listening ear can make all the difference. listen to the answers in a non-judgemental and open way. Reassure your colleague that you are there to help and support them.
Watch out for any red flags, such as lashing out, becoming withdrawn or not eating. If they are struggling, encourage them to seek a professional’s expertise, such as a GP or counsellor.
Encourage them to stay connected to family and friends. Working under stress can be quite isolating and creating support networks, both in and out of work is so important.
Sufficient staff breaks. Ensure team members take their proper breaks and ensure there is adequate cover to reduce pressure on others.
Implement social-distancing measures to reduce the risk of staff feeling anxious about getting ill. Actively share any new and accurate COVID-19-related updates with staff and how it might affect them.
Create a buddy system. Pair a junior team member with someone more experienced to provide guidance and social support.
Ensure staff are aware of and have information and access to professional support services. available to them.
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