Reintegrating to Work
In our "Safer Return Together" from the COVID-19 pandemic, essential workers continue to be essential, some activated DSW's have shifted back to regular work whereas others continue their DSW assignment, and telecommuters return to the worksite. Supporting the health and well-being of ourselves and our employees is critical. With proper planning and providing continued support to our workforce, together we will strengthen working relationships, reduce anxiety, and facilitate a positive working atmosphere.
Use the resources below to explore:
How to support whole-person well-being and why this matters
Resources to support self-care
How to engage and encourage employees to share their experiences
To download a printable version of the Reintegrating to Work Guide, click HERE.
The pandemic has affected each one of us in many different ways. As you engage with co-workers, take on new work or readjust to getting back in the office, you may experience diverse emotions such as stress, anxiety and even excitement. It's important to remember that these feelings are normal in these circumstances.
1. Take Care of Yourself
Start a practice of self-care. Use your breaks throughout the day to engage in that practice that matters most to you.
- It's easy to forget about ourselves and take care of others, however if you completely forget about your own self care it may be difficult to focus on helping those we care for most. Take time to focus on taking care of yourself and engage in daily practice of self care. Get started by visiting: https://sfhss.org/crediblemind.
- Find an activity that resonates most with you. Check out FREE activities available to you, at https://sfhss.org/events.
2. Talk About Your Experience
Talking about our experiences, challenges and difficulties throughout the pandemic can right size our feelings. Talk with people you trust about your feelings and experiences about what you've learned, work-life balance, re-integrating back to your regular work or going back into the workplace.
- Support one another. Engage in conversations using R.A.S.A. (receive, appreciate, summarize and ask), a skill that can help when others are sharing their experiences with you.
3. Don't Wait, Seek Out Support
Take good care of yourself and utilize available services to support you— seek out help to navigate steps you need to take to ensure your manage stressors you may be experiencing.
Find support that is meaningful and useful to your needs. All SFHSS negotiated health plans provide FREE mental health benefitsto support your emotional well-being. Explore your benefits and identify the support that matters most to you.
Supervisors and Managers
To support employees supervisors, managers and leaders must focus on relational practices to help cultivate staff cohesion and community in the workplace.
1. Create a Space and Focus on Community Building & Connection
Create a safe space and focus on bringing everyone together to re-establish the work community with an emphasis on being present sand supportive to one another.
- Establish icebreakers and team buildingactivities for employees to reconnect with one another. Implement a morning huddle to share stories or create a well-being moment into your all staff meetings.
- Communicate often regarding health & safety policies and changes to work flow-- Ensure a climate where employees can be open about their experience, feelings, and key learnings.
2. Acknowledge, Appreciate & Recognize Employees
Assess staff well-being needs for reintegrating to the workplace. Use the information gathered to guide your efforts in recognizing emotions and efforts in the workplace.
- Create a supportive environment that fosters a community of caring for each other. Offer a Stress First Aid training to help employees identify stress in themselves and their colleagues and learn how to reach out for support. Contact email@example.com for more information.
- Identify at least one recognition leadership practice and one peer-to-peer practice to implement for your team. Download the SFHSS Recognition & Appreciation Guide and get started.
3. Lead through Change & Uncertainty
During this phase of reintegration, there will be disruption and change. Create opportunity to reinforce messages that give permission to practice self-care and share well-being resources.
- Assess employees concerns, fears, and hopes about reintegrating to work. Listen with R.A.S.A. and use the information gathered and make a plan to support your employees.
- Transition or change can be challenging. Engage in an organizational consultation with SFHSS EAP to help you find a solution that is tailored to your unique work environment. Contact our EAP team at firstname.lastname@example.org.