| Pic: IMAGESBAZAAR |
With hectic schedules and a competitive environment plaguing professionals all year long, stress and anxiety is inevitable. Couple this with difficult relationships and the inability to manage work-life balance, and what emerges is an exhausted and inefficient employee. In order to aid employees in handling their workplace issues, companies are fast embracing employee counselling as a viable lifeline
Gurpreet Khanna, director & CEO, IESP tells us the various advantages of employee counselling:
• Confidential counselling programmes at workplace can allow employees to identify and share their personal and professional challenges like work-life balance, office politics, peer pressure, productivity issues etc;
• Professional counselling can provide the right guidance to employees to garner skills and turn them to useful resources in coping with their problems;
• Professional counselling can guide employees to effective decision-making and improves their productivity;
• Professional counselling methods achieve at striking a perfect balance between an employee's emotional, physical and psychological well-being and the organisation's well-being.
Employee counselling is not only for a stress-afflicted person, but for all employees to promote a healthy career. Rahul Kulkarni, head – HR, Kale Consultants, elaborates, "Counselling is a process through which one person helps another by purposeful conversation in an understanding atmosphere. Its basic purpose is to assist the individual to make their own decision from the different choices available to them. Employee counselling acts as a mirror for an individual to showcase their strengths and weaknesses. Employee counselling is majorly focused on promoting a healthy career. It helps the employee solve their professional problems and maintain their stress levels while expressing their thoughts and feelings in such a way that they are able to clarify their own situations and also come to terms with any new experience."
It is essential that the company implements the employee counselling programme in an effective manner. Rosita Rabindra, chief people officer, NIIT Technologies, elaborates, "Employee counselling often inculcates a feeling of insecurity among employees if conducted within the company and they end up feeling that their discussions with the counsellor would affect their appraisals. Hence, confidentiality is of utmost importance while implementing the counselling programme. The best way is to hire a professional service that provides the options of online chats, calls and meetings and maintains complete anonymity. Issues like relationships, parenting, boss conflicts, etc. are the general hot topics that get discussed these days. Apart from this, we also organise workshops, self-assessment questionnaires, seminars, etc. to further aid employees in the process."
On the other hand, some companies find that seniors and peers can also act as counsellors to employees as they know them better and can give personalised advice. Sanjay Dua, HR head, Keventer Group, explains, "Seniors' and peers' interaction with an employee is much deeper and thus, they are in a better position to understand the emotional vulnerability of the concerned individual and can counsel effectively. On the other hand, any external counsellor needs to establish confident rapport with the individual first and then apply the counselling."
Hence, employee counselling can certainly play a major role in keeping employees de-stressed.
- Palak Bhatia
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