Helping your people to bounce back to the office

We’ve all heard the saying ‘you can handle anything life throws at you’ right? But how true is that for your workforce?

Since Covid-19 hit, organisations have had challenges thrown at them left, right and centre. From job losses and furlough to a rapid home working shift accompanied with tech problems galore – workplaces have experienced adversity like never before.

The only constant in life is change

Over the last 18 months our world, including the way we live, work and play has changed in many ways. While the majority of employees are used to workplaces being ever-changing, stressful environments, nobody was prepared for the uncertainty that the pandemic has presented.

According to research, the accumulation of continuous change can increase feelings of physiological distress and negatively impact both mental and physical wellbeing. Whether that’s anxiety, depression, sleeping problems or other unpleasant symptoms, the chances are your people have experienced one or more, as a result of the workplace changes that they’ve had no control over.

Riding out the waves of difficulty

The good news is, there’s a way that employers can help their people to recover from these setbacks and quickly adapt to the new way of working.

By encouraging and harnessing the vital skill of resilience within the workplace, staff can bounce back during times of change, hardship and adversity and prevent such difficult situations from personally affecting their wellbeing.

Unfortunately, resilience isn’t something that we’re born with, BUT it is a skill that anyone can build, strengthen, and maintain.

The key to becoming more resilient at work

So, how can employers improve the mental and emotional resilience of their staff as they return to the office? Here’s our three simple tips:

  • Get to know the Five Pillars of Resilience

Before organisations can start working on making their workforce more resilient, employers and their people need to know exactly what it is that forms resilience.

It isn’t just the skill of being able to make the best out of a bad situation, it goes deeper than that and involves five main attributes.

Emotional wellbeing, inner drive, future focus, physical health and relationships must all be considered equally – look out for online training courses that can effectively equip your workforce with the knowledge and tools to better manage challenges and change.

  • Encourage employee self-awareness

Each resilience pillar requires self-awareness. Employees should be encouraged to shine a light on their behaviour, thoughts and emotions that they experience when returning to the workplace without judging, burying or pushing them aside.

For example, for those feeling anxious about returning to the office, it could be helpful to understand exactly where that anxiety is stemming from by carrying out self-awareness activities such as journaling, breathing and meditation.

  • Promote physical wellbeing

Resilience isn’t just about thoughts, feeling and emotions – physical wellbeing plays a big part, as it's what gives us the energy and drive to maintain all of the other pillars.

By promoting regular exercise, healthy eating, staying hydrated and the importance of sleep to staff, you could help employees to develop the transferable skills of confidence, motivation, self-discipline and the ability to work outside of their comfort zone.

Resilience training is crucial for maintaining a happy and healthy workforce. With our IOSH approved online course we can equip your people with the tools they need to build resilience and tackle mental, physical and emotional obstacles in the workplace. Find out more about the training opportunities that are available on the Key Wellbeing Hub: