Staff Wellbeing During the Coronavirus Pandemic
Updated: Apr 19, 2022
Sharp Minds Communications recently interviewed Airey Miller Director, Denise Sheerin, to give her review on Forrest Health & Wellbeing Programme....
To get the best version of each person embedded into our organisation, we recognise it's essential to treat them as people over and above numbered employees; and the Coronavirus pandemic has gone some way to teaching us that.
"We’ve been going since 1994, and we’ve learnt that the more you give your staff, the more you get from them. I think you get more out of people if you treat them as humans, but until now there hasn’t been enough for employers or employees in terms of supporting them as people – typically it’s all very corporate: you support your employees by paying them well. But to get the most out of staff you need to support them as well; you could have a great team member who’s not doing a great job because they have no work-life balance or mental health issues."
There have been many unprecedented challenges faced by our staff from: struggling to work from home each day; to home schooling; to restricted contact with friends, family and colleagues; to dealing with elderly family members; to loss, etc.
What we've learned is that effective health and wellbeing support for businesses and staff is needed more than ever – coronavirus and lockdown has completely overwhelmed and changed people. Even if we have vaccines in place by the end of this year, people still need to recover mentally and financially – and as employers we need to help them.
"We have seen emotional struggle manifest in our staff in so many ways. When we had the first lockdown in March, as employers we had to react incredibly quickly."
The benefits to us as a business is that our employees know that we care about them as humans and we know they have families. The more staff you get, the more issues with mental health and wellbeing you are going to get, and not everyone is going to feel comfortable about being open about it. Interacting with our staff on a more personal level shows them that their employer is invested in their mental health, which is going to foster a more open culture. And, as business owners, we know that the more we support our staff, the more they give to us.
Author : Denise Sheerin