Living in the high pressure, fast moving twenty first century can take its tole on people’s mental and physical health. What may seem emotionally stressful to one person, may be a welcome challenge to another. Where stress is involved, everyone is vulnerable including; employers, senior management, managers, workers, those who are furloughed due to the pandemic and those who are either unemployed or who are anxious that their jobs are under threat. We can either bury our heads in the sand, do nothing about it and let it spiral out of control or we can address the subject of work-related stress.
Those in control of workplaces, large or small, can make a decision to learn about stress, how it affects individuals physically and mentally and what can be done at work to reduce the likelihood of harmful work-related stress occurring in the first place and reducing the consequence by early intervention for those who recognise the signs of chronic stress. There has never been a more crucial time to train your workforce, however many businesses in the public and private sector are not addressing their legal duty to continually train their employees, and this may have a detrimental effect on their future businesses.
The Health and Safety at Work (NI) Order 1978 places a legal duty on employers to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, (SFARP) the health, safety and welfare at work of all of his employees. The same legislation places a legal duty on employees to take reasonable care of their own health, safety and welfare. The Management of Health and Safety at Work (NI) Regulations 2000 place a legal duty on employers to carry out suitable and sufficient risk assessments of reasonably foreseeable risks and to eliminate or reduce those risks SFARP. Employees have a legal duty to report any health and safety shortcomings, dangerous situations and to carry out their work in accordance with training and instruction. This legislation is applicable to those working in the workplace or at home which is highly relevant at the moment. So, let me ask you this: Do you think it is reasonably foreseeable that your workforce could be at risk of the harmful effects of work-related stress? And, what are you prepared to do about it to reduce the risk?
The content of the training must be relevant to those attending; either face to face or on a virtual platform. So, it is vital that someone booking training talks to a competent professional so that the training will be appropriate and relevant to the group attending. The training should be delivered by a highly qualified, competent and experienced instructor. Don’t be afraid to ask about the qualifications of the tutor. Don’t waste your training budget on courses that don’t meet your specific requirements. Here are a few tips:
Now you have a comprehensive understanding of the type of training you require, choose the right training provider. A reputable provider should fully understand your requirements and either be able to provide the training, or refer you to another organisation who provide this kind of training. Remember; this is not a box ticking exercise, you want the training to be totally relevant to your attendees and to have met your requirement to potentially to reduce the risk of your workforce suffering from the harmful effects of stress. Finding the right training provider is crucial.
A good trainer will motivate the attendees to put into practice what they have learned in the training session. Candidates should feel empowered and refreshed after the course and have learned skills to recognise situations where harmful work-related stress could occur and to put in place controls to reduce the risk.
The attendees should leave the course with an understanding and motivation to apply what they have learned in the workplace. To the trainer; this is a job well done and to the person who organised the training session, it is training accomplished. We at NPTNI pride ourselves for being associated with the best health and safety training professionals in Northern Ireland so please feel free to ask for advice.
© 2021 Nicola Penman. All rights reserved.