Feel Good Co Breakfast - breaking the stigma by introducing psychological safety in the workplace

Leanne Rigby
April 1, 2020

Mental Health in the workplace is a hot topic on everyone’s agenda in the lead up to Mental Health Awareness week commencing 14th May. The more we talk about it openly, the greater chance we have of reducing the stigma. As leaders and colleagues we all have a role to play.

To address this all important topic, Feel Good  Co kicked off our first breakfast to open up an interactive conversation, to arrive at practical solutions and share best practices around the table.

The Feel Good Co speaker, Dr Jacqui Wilmshurst, a specialist in psychological health and safety and facilitated the breakfast discussion emphasising the importance of creating a working culture where employees feel safe, valued and supported by their organisations. The session was a collaborative conversation with HR Professionals and Health and Wellbeing managers from a wide range of industries including representatives from Lower Thames Crossing, Danone, PwC, Punter Southall and Rakuten.

The morning proved to be an invigorating and safe space for like-minded professionals to share their ideas on how we can bring best practice around mental health to their workplaces with all delegates leaving with an action plan to achieve this. The breakfast created the perfect opportunity to share with others and learn from emerging good practice in the field, in the UK and internationally, discussing challenges in relation to Psychological Safety in their organisations.

“Thank you for an inspiring breakfast, it was really interesting and an incredible useful session.” Rakuten

The key ideas that came out of the session included building a culture of togetherness and how best to support the mental health champions and first aiders in the workplace.

Feel Good Co Solutions included:

·One to one coaching for employees
It is vital to create a safe environment to speak confidentially to an expert about pressing concerns. We want to empower individuals to feel motivated and inspired to take care of their own mental wellbeing and look out for their colleagues. On average, we spend more waking hours with our co-workers than we do with our families so why not get to know our colleagues and build stronger more meaningful relationships.  

·Informing managers about best practices for helping others in need
This includes knowing when and who to refer them to rather than ignoring the topic or jumping into conversations they are not prepared or comfortable having.

·Checking in with the Mental Health champions and first aiders
Having employees in the office who are wellbeing advocates and have a passion for wellbeing is great but if none of their colleagues know they are trained to handle these difficult conversations, no one is going to use their expertise. Make sure these champions are known around the office so everyone knows who to turn to. It’s time to buddy up!

·Shoulder to shoulder conversation
Talking makes us human and keeps us alive. Don’t ever be afraid to reach out. Getting some fresh air and having conversations outside of the working environment is incredibly beneficial. Shoulder to shoulder conversations may be more effective and less daunting compared to face to face as it allows individuals to open up and express their emotions without having to make eye contact with the listener.

We can’t wait to host our next breakfast and keep the conversation and discussions buzzing. Keep an eye out for your invite for our next one! Or to find out more about our mental health solutions contact us on info@feelgoodco.com for our brochure or arrange a call with us to discuss your needs.

Here are our recommended resources to find out more about what you can do to create a psychological safe environment in your workplace:

· https://rework.withgoogle.com/blog/five-keys-to-a-successful-google-team/

· https://www.ted.com/talks/amy_edmondson_how_to_turn_a_group_of_strangers_into_a_team?lan guage=en

· https://www.businessinsider.com/amy-edmondson-on-psychological-safety-2015-11?r=UK&IR=T

· https://hbr.org/podcast/2018/11/dysfunctional-teams

· https://rework.withgoogle.com/guides/understanding-team-effectiveness/steps/foster-psychological- safety/

· https://www.bbc.co.uk/safety/health/mental_health · https://www.bbc.co.uk/safety/health/mental-health-work-related

Download our free ebook

Moving beyond Tipping Point: 3 steps to create a workplace mental health safe zone

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