In my last blog entry ('Am I Worth It?') I wrote about the importance of individual staff in the international aid, charity and public sectors seeking support in times of difficulty. I also promoted the practice of them being more routinely encouraged to review their psychological health and overall well-being.
In this particular entry I want to shift the focus to organisations as wholes - emphasising how beneficial training, awareness-raising and general preparedness for dealing with staff-care issues can be. By this, I do not just mean senior managers and HR, but also employees working at all levels, whose responses to their colleagues and peers can count for a lot when crises and challenges arise.
FD Consultants are often called in to support staff in the wake of a difficult event. This can be something as broad in scope and large in scale as a major terrorist attack, or something like the death of a staff member at work, which, whilst much smaller in reach, can be no less de-stabilizing.
It tends to be that we, as FD Consultants, are seen as the 'experts' with special tools and skills to step into the aftermath of frightening or upsetting situations and leave those affected feeling calmer and more secure. In many respects, our trainings and amassed experience as counsellors and trauma specialists stand us in good stead for this. We can help identify people's needs after a difficult event and either provide, or guide them, towards appropriate support.
However, when contacted in such situations, FD Consultants will often advise organisations to hold back, bide their time, and consider what they themselves might be able to do, to address a situation where staff-care is a key concern. After all, it's peoples' colleagues - known to them and with familiar faces - who are likely to be the first to notice or respond to anything that affects their ability to feel focused, safe and well at work. For this reason, there's a strong case for teaching workforces how to do this sensitively and effectively before bringing the specialists in.
FD Consultants offer a range of established and bespoke training courses which promote their aim of 'caring for the carers' by showing staff how they can start to do this within their own teams and organisations.
If your organisation needs any support or help with the topics covered in this blog please do get in touch with us today. We can offer tailored training programmes to suit your business needs so that you can be safe in the knowledge that your staff are equipped to cope in tough situations.
MBACP (Accred), MA Counselling & Psychotherapy