Monday, January 27, 2014

EAPs: Counseling While Rome Burns

I am always fascinated by EA professionals and what interests them. Over the past 13 years of blogging on EAP and behavioral exposures to financial loss in the workplace, clinical topics always get top views. Codependency, emotional intelligence in the workplace, relationships with the supervisor, depression, and stress management--they're all big attention-getters. Less so with issues affecting the survivability of the EAP field. This is puzzling to me. These issues include increasing EAP utilization, marketing EAPs, tightening up and enhancing relationships with management, and the one I think is the tippy-top issue --- demonstrating cost-benefit and how to prove the cost of troubled employees. These topics link to the survivability of the EAP field. And let me say that an obscure international EAP research study being conducted Sweden or Swiss researches is never going to produce the sea change needed for this field to relive its heyday. To that end, here is last week's WorkExcel E-Newsletter story which screams for EAPs  to pay attention to it. Get "into" proving your worth and confront faux-EAPs Know how to discuss cost-benefit and return on investment before the CFO comes knocking on your door.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

EAPs: How to Create An "End of Session" Health Tips Pitch

Three Health Tips To Conclude
Any Employee-Client Counseling Session

First of all... Happy New Year.

What three health tips would you offer an employee while walking him or her to the door following a meeting in your office to discuss a personal problem? Employee assistance programs, consider the following:

Whether you meet with an employee who is depressed, anxious, worried, traumatized, victimized, upset with a boss, or simply disgruntled, I bet you say at the end of the meeting, "Thanks John for coming in, and take care of yourself, ok?..."

These last 60 seconds often conclude with a handshake and well wishes, but they are an excellent time to insert healthful advice that will be remembered.

Taking a few minutes to develop a small, health tips "pitch" that you can deliver in the final moments. You'll benefit your client-employee and help the organization at the same time.

When I saw this article in Inc. Magazine, I thought about
all the times I've said good-bye to a client, but only offered a general statement of support when I could have amended the remaining seconds with some cool sticky tips.

Check it out. I think you will agree that the end of any counseling session includes an opportunity for a good-bye pitch and these few health tips below are the ones to include. (I'm a great believer in short, bite-sized help.)

 From the Inc. magazine article include: 1) don't skip breakfast; 2) eat a healthy 4 p.m. snack; and, 3) get enough sleep.

Why these three things? Any why not, "get some exercise?"....

See the article and consider how you can further support your client, while helping the organization's productivity at the same time...what an EAP is all about.

Three Health Habits that Drive Success.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

When Organizational Development Specialists Become "Professional Counselor"

EA professionals who also provide organizational development (OD) consulting may be able to practice both professions equally well, but OD staff are not in the position to play the role of an employee assistance professional. The problem is that many do.  This is a risk issue for organizations. An OD staffer cannot counsel employees and promise confidentiality any more than a janitor. I have seen organizations where employees visit with OD staffers instead of the EAP. OD staff can increase risk for organizations when they attempt to resolve organizational, communication, or morale problems that have their roots in clinical or psychiatric problems. Organizations should take steps to examine the role other experts in the organization play, and be clear with these professionals regarding the scope of their duties and areas of expertise. OD specialists who derive personal meaning and job satisfaction from the counseling role with employee employees will create risk for organizations and the employees they seek to help.