A crisis that threatens one's emotional resilience can be a large-scale event such as a natural or man-made disaster, an act of terror, even a pandemic, or a less-widespread event within an organisation such as a serious accident, violence or suicide.

There is consensus amongst professional bodies and clinicians regarding best practice for creating emotional resilience for such events in the workplace. What is less well understood, however, is how this translates to real-world implementation.

Needing to understand

Poor mental health costs UK employers around £45bn annually and, on average, causes 5.8 days annual sickness absence per employee. Presenteeism costs three times more than sick leave.

The impact of a major incident on individuals can be immense. Even when an affected employee has access to professional services, up to 80% of people don’t seek support and it’s often the people that most need the help that find it hardest to access it.

To create resilient workplaces managers need the skills and confidence to recognise the range of crisis reactions, offer informal social support and signpost employees to additional support when necessary. Around 69% of UK line managers say that supporting employee wellbeing is a core skill but only 13% have received training in this subject.

The ripple of a major incident extends into the fabric of our society. The link between psychological trauma and family breakdown, drug and alcohol abuse, homelessness, violence, suicide, poor physical health and crime is well established.

Why this matters

It goes without saying that Covid-19 severely tested emotional resilience on a wide scale. Mental health is perceived to be more important than ever so it’s a timely opportunity to reflect on the realities. Many organisations and end users are scrutinising how they tackle this subject and requiring more efficiency and effectiveness and fewer challenges and less wasteMany are reviewing what they do not only in the face of such demand but also because some are suspecting their strategies are missing ‘something’.

A research topic

Resilience First is collaborating with trauma specialists KRTS International to produce a white paper that aims to discover:

  • the key ingredients to successful guidance implementation;
  • the merits of taking a bottom-up / top-down approach;
  • the common pain points and pitfalls and how they can be overcome;
  • potentially hidden issues that impact on an organisation’s ability and/or willingness to act on the guidance.

Your views matter

The research team would like to hear from people who have been involved in any way in the implementation of strategies for creating emotional resilience for major incidents. We want to hear from people with diverse operational roles, irrespective of whether the experience has been good, bad or mixed.

Anonymous data will be collected using Microsoft Forms and a selection of volunteer respondents will be invited to take part in a more focused, anonymous, virtual interview.

For more information, please contact Dr Liz Royle at liz.royle@krtsinternational.com