How To Better Support Employees Through Trauma

February 8 2022 - Trauma is something that most people will go through during different parts of their lives. When it happens to those you are close to, it is important that you are there for them. This applies to both your professional and your personal lives. As such, if you have an employee who has recently gone through a traumatic experience, it is important that you are there for them and your business is doing everything that it can to provide your employee with the support that they need. If you have an employee going through one of these experiences and are unsure what you can do, you are in the right place, as this article will break down your options in more detail.

What is Your Role as the Employer?

You may first wonder what your role as the employer is when you have an employee going through a difficult situation. This can be difficult to truly get a grip on as staff members are going to deal with their experiences differently, whereas some may want the support of their employer, others may be happy simply getting on with their work. Nevertheless, both managers and HR staff need to make themselves available as the primary point of contact for any employees who are going through a hard time, whether this is inside or outside of work. You need to ensure staff know that they can come to you with anything that they may need and be confident in providing you with sensitive information.

Providing Support in the Early Stages

There are a few different things that you can do as an employer to provide support to your staff members who may find themselves going through a traumatic experience. This includes:

Understand What They Are Going Through

It is important that you are fully understanding of what your employee is going through. This means finding out about what has happened to them and educating them on the repercussions of that event. For instance, one of the worst-case scenarios is if a family member or friend of theirs has died. If this is the result of criminal activity, then you should familiarise yourself with the legal process. One of the best ways to do this is to look online and consider articles on the judicial procedure and the difference between certain crimes, such as the difference between murder and homicide.

Acknowledge That an Event Has Occurred

Employees may experience periods of anxiety when they wonder whether or not people that they work with have knowledge as to what has happened. You can put an end to this anxiety by calling them in a room and acknowledging what has happened, you can then discuss whether they would like people to know and, if so, how they would like people to be informed.

Communicate Options for Leave

Sometimes, all an employee needs when they are going through a difficult period is some time off. As such, it can mean a lot to them if you communicate from early on that this is an option for them if they so wish to take it.