As we approach the middle of 2020, most of us are well and truly into the groove of new ways of working, perhaps even starting to cautiously venture back into the world. Despite the enormous challenges and hardship we’ve seen unfold here in Australia and globally as a result of the pandemic, I’m hopeful that some good will come of this time. For instance, without this jolt we may never have taken a step back to consider whether our former ways of working and living were optimal for our wellbeing. Certainly, for me personally, and at SuperFriend, we’re exploring all the possibilities that have now opened up to us, testing and trying a few versions of a potential ‘new normal’. I have empowered the SuperFriend team to tell me how they work best in this new world, watching with enthusiasm as they ask bold questions like: do we need to travel interstate anymore, or do we need to be in the office as much as before? Many other organisations are having similar conversations, like our Partner TAL.
COVID-19 and it’s extensive social and economic impacts have put a huge amount of pressure on people, many of whom were already doing it tough, needing workplace support now more than ever. For a lot of people, the transition to remote working has produced new challenges, such as ‘Zoom fatigue’ from being on video calls for a large amount of the day, as discussed in the news by one of our GMs, Keir Paterson. The articles in this edition feature best practice ways to support your employees in a range of work situations, including the transition back into on-site working.
Through the devastating circumstances in the US with the tragic death of George Floyd, it is also critical that we face into important conversations about diversity, discrimination and inexcusable behaviour. We know that events on the public stage have a major impact on people’s mental health, and we also know that a lack of attention to issues impacting employees with diverse backgrounds and needs is a net negative for everyone. SuperFriend has been talking about the importance of respectful and proper recognition of the unique status of First Nations people in our country’s history and how we can better approach this as an organisation. The Diversity Council Australia has some great resources on the subject to get started.
I hope you find these resources helpful, and urge you to look out for yourself and those around you as we all recalibrate.