This week, in an intervention for a major crisis in a company, we met with managers to help them manage the emotional health of employees. One of the topics we covered was how to talk to employees who are having a hard time but don't want to share it at work. We said that there were multiple reasons for not opening up, from fear of being seen as weak, to difficulties in talking about feelings and very often fear that confidentiality will not be respected and that colleagues or higher-ups will know that we are having a hard time.
Although the pandemic has allowed many people to share their vulnerability at work, there are many people who continue to feel insecure doing so. That is why help to those who are having a bad time should always be offered by external services. Not everyone believes that psychologists within the company or medical departments will respect that confidentiality and this factor limits access to the necessary help.
One of the benefits of employee assistance programs such as Healthy work is that help is not only provided 24/7, but also that the service, being external, guarantees confidentiality. Nobody in the company finds out that we have asked for help and for many people this is a basic requirement. The peace of mind that external help offers cannot be offered by any support within the company (although it is always better than not having it). It is true that the PAE provides general information to the company on the use and general subject matter of the queries, let's not fool ourselves, but never in such a way that the person who has called can be identified. Confidentiality is sacred.
Throughout our history we have come across human resources departments that have felt uncomfortable with the idea of not knowing what is happening and have asked to be the ones to refer employees to the program, refusing to provide a free phone number that would not happen. for your control. Only HR could manage the psychological needs of workers. We have to say that all of them, over time, have seen the advantages of this not being the model to follow and have implemented access through a 900 number external to the company.
From Healthy work we want to emphasize that the CONFIDENTIALITY with capital letters is the key that allows many people who would not access help within the company to obtain the support they need.
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