Supporting Employees Through Turbulent Times: A Corporate Responsibility

The ongoing conflict in Israel and Gaza is undeniably unsettling and has a far-reaching impact, affecting people globally. Many individuals are directly or indirectly affected, with some having lost loved ones in the conflict or grappling with the agony of missing family members. For others, a profound historical or religious connection intensifies their emotional distress. This turmoil, along with the constant exposure to distressing content online, elicits a spectrum of emotions, from confusion and sadness to anger and helplessness.

And then they get overwhelmed.

Because so much of the advice often touted by (well-meaning) fitness influencers is pretty unrealistic for the average person who doesn’t want to spend their life in the gym or micromanage every morsel of food they put into their mouth.

The good news is, you don’t have to.

You can do far less than you think to reap the rewards for your long-term health. This isn’t to say that you won’t get any extra benefits from doing more. But it should reassure you that doing less than what we typically hear as being the “gold standard” is still absolutely worth doing, and will still enable you to get MOST of the gains.

Corporate responsibility

The widely reported loss of life and ongoing trauma associated with this conflict can trigger stress, anxiety and tension for many people. It’s imperative to recognise that this turmoil can seep into the workplace. As a collective grappling with the enormity of these events addressing them within a company context requires thoughtful and empathetic internal communication. Employers play a pivotal role in supporting their employees, regardless of the extent of their personal connection to the conflict. Their responsibility extends to ensuring that differences of opinion do not escalate into workplace conflicts. By fostering a workplace environment that not only acknowledges but also actively addresses the concerns of their staff, companies can uplift employee morale, enhance productivity, and cultivate unwavering loyalty.

To navigate these turbulent times effectively, here are some strategies to consider when supporting your employees:

1. Open Communication

Effective communication serves as the bedrock of any successful employee support system. It’s paramount that employees feel at ease discussing their concerns and seeking assistance. One-on-one and team meetings present opportunities for line managers to initiate open conversations about well-being, thereby prompting discussions about the challenges employees face and the support they may require. While not everyone may be comfortable expressing their feelings, creating a safe space for those who wish to open up is essential.

2. Flexible Work Arrangements

In times of distress, managing personal circumstances can be overwhelmingly challenging. Companies should consider offering flexible work arrangements, such as remote work options, adaptable work hours, or extended leave policies. These measures empower employees to balance their professional responsibilities with their personal lives more effectively, thereby reducing stress and promoting a healthier work-life balance.

 

3. Recognition and Appreciation

Recognising and appreciating employees’ contributions during these trying times can significantly boost morale. Celebrating achievements, milestones, and the dedication of your workforce can go a long way. Even small gestures, such as thank-you notes, awards, or tokens of appreciation, can make a profound impact.

4. Diversity and Inclusion

Promoting diversity and inclusion within the workplace is pivotal in ensuring that all employees feel supported, regardless of their background or identity. Corporate companies can foster inclusive environments through training programs, mentorship initiatives, and the enforcement of policies that actively combat discrimination.

5. Mental Health Initiatives

Prioritising the mental health of employees is of utmost importance. Companies can support their staff by providing access to mental health resources, including counselling services, stress management workshops, and mindfulness programmes. These initiatives not only help employees cope with stress but also demonstrate a sincere commitment to their overall well-being. If you are interested in looking into this more we have stress management and grief masterclasses at HumanOS as well as 1:1 employee support, which you can access here. You can also recommend Samaritans, a confidential active listening service that anyone can use 24/7 for free. Samaritans provide telephone or text support to anyone going through challenging times – they can be contacted on 116 123.

As the world continues to navigate this distressing period, corporate companies have a critical role to play in supporting their employees. By cultivating a supportive workplace culture that places emphasis on open communication, mental health, flexibility, diversity, and continuous learning, companies can offer invaluable support to their employees. This commitment is not just a responsibility; it’s a wise investment, as employees who feel valued and supported are more likely to be engaged, loyal, and productive, ultimately benefiting the company’s bottom line. Corporate empathy and support can make a world of difference to employees facing these challenging times.

If there is anything else we can do to help you contact us here.

Olivia, HumanOS Psychological Therapist