Feb 27, 2017 12:18 PM
As a manager or human resources professional, your employees are looking to you for leadership when a traumatic event occurs at your workplace. Who can you look to?
No one ever wants — or expects — the worst to happen. But sadly, some things are out of our control:The death of an employee, at or outside the workplace
An injury-causing accident at work
Natural disasters like floods, earthquakes, tornadoes, or wildfires
A workplace shooting
(The American Academy of Experts in Traumatic Response mentions a few more examples in this helpful article.)
Without a timely, well-organized response, any of these events can throw a company and its workforce into chaotic disarray. Confusion, fear and anger run rampant. Morale drops, productivity declines and your company’s reputation with customers, partners and potential new talent can take a serious hit.
That’s not to mention potential legal liabilities, lawsuits or expensive settlements.
How can your company survive the initial shock of a traumatic event? How can you restore an environment in which employees feel safe?
For many companies, the answer is their employee assistance program (EAP). So it’s no surprise the U.S. government, in its manager’s handbook, “Handling Traumatic Events,” mentions employee assistance programs 21 times. “Critical incident response” is also one of the three high-value EAP services mentioned in our article from earlier this year.