AccessEAP in media

COVID-19 Major working from home struggle facing employees during the pandemic

Published in Yahoo Lifestyle 2nd April 2020

With many people all around the country now working from home due to the outbreak of COVID-19, Marcela Slepica AccessEAP Director Clinical Services, believes there’s definitely an increased risk of workplace exhaustion.

“For example, working parents who have young children at home, have to to juggle teaching, supervising and keeping children busy while also trying to work and meet deadlines. In addition to this, there are fears of not wanting to risk losing their job, which means they may be working late at night and doing overtime,” Marcela said.

“The pressures and demands can be significant. Those working alone who are isolated may struggle with loneliness, motivation, and feel disconnected from their colleagues. This may impact their feelings of anxiety, may affect sleep, and could also cause them to work longer hours as they fear losing their jobs.”

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COVID-19 Supporting each other in a time of crisis

Published in mybusiness 1st April 2020

Communicate often, according to Marcela Slepica, AccessEAP Director, Clinical Services.

It’s important for employers to check in with their team members. Regular check-ins help people to feel connected, and managers should try to provide structure for employees. The situation is constantly changing and evolving, so reassuring people we are in this together is vital. 

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How can workplaces better support working parents?

Published in wellnessdaily 21st February 2020

AccessEAP clinical services director Marcela Slepica said that in order to support those parents and contribute to better mental health, businesses must take the time to help and assist their employees and offer flexibility whenever they can.

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The road to recovery: dealing with grief and loss

Published in Human Resources Director 20th February 2020

The impact of natural disasters, such as the bushfires across Australia, will have significant long-term effects, according to Marcela Slepica, Clinical Director of AccessEAP.

The workplace can provide a sense of community, and communities that support each other through difficult times is key.

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How to set realistic goals and objectives

Published in INTHEBLACK 1st February 2020

The goals you set need to be realistic and in line with your organisation while keeping in mind team morale and employee motivation.

You can't afford to take a set-and-forget approach. Unforeseeable changes that may occur can impact the relevance of your goals, or your ability to achieve them. Explains Marcela Slepica, Director, Clinical Services.

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Are your employees financially stressed after returning to work?

Published in Human Resources Director 17th January 2020

AccessEAP, Clinical Director, Marcela Slepica said returning to work after the holiday period brings a dose of reality. Someone who has spent more than they planned can feel out of control and anxious that they haven’t managed their funds well.

“By creating a safe and confidential environment where employees will feel more comfortable talking about their issues, they may be more open to seeking financial coaching support.”

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Workplaces need proactive approach to mental health

Published in MyBusiness 9th January 2020

In light of the release of the draft report, CEO of AccessEAP Sally Kirkright highlights the important role that managers play in the support of their employees, stating that businesses “must take a stance against mental health”.

“While diseases and physical conditions tend to affect older generations, mental ill health inhibits our working lives, limiting the ability to secure and retain employment,” Ms Kirkright said.

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How to look after employees over the festive season

Published in Human Resources Director 18th December 2019

The festive season can be a joyous time, full of gift giving and parties with friends and family.

However, for many people who rely on work for social connection, the season can be far from merry.

Marcela Slepica, Clinical Director, AccessEAP, said that while loneliness isn’t a mental health problem, it can contribute to mental health conditions such as anxiety or depression, which can be a significant risk factor to those who are struggling with suicidal thoughts.

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How to improve mental health in workforces

Published in Human Resources Director 6th December 2019.

Sally Kirkright, CEO AccessEAP, said workplaces must take a stance against mental ill-health.

“Businesses need to be mindful of the impact they have on employees’ mental wellbeing through the job itself, workplace culture and organisational support including recognition, stigma and the physical environment,” added Kirkright.

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Prevent burnout

Published in INTHEBLACK 1st December 2019.

Marcela Slepica, director of clinical services at AccessEAP, says burnout is now occurring in a broader range of sectors. “There has always been burnout in certain industries, such as the caring professions or first responders – police or emergency medics – but I now see it moving into other industries, including professional services.”

Slepica says workload, constant change and workers feeling misunderstood by senior managers are common complaints.

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DV must be better addressed in the workplace

Published in Wellness Daily 15th November 2019.

AccessEAP clinical director Marcela Slepica said employers and work play a significant role in supporting women dealing with this issue.

“Domestic violence has very real impacts on employees and the workplace. For the victim, health and economic costs can increase and mental health can deteriorate. For organisations, this can lead to lower productivity, efficiency, staff retention rates and motivation, as well as higher absenteeism,” she said.

How can employers create a sense of purpose?

Published in Human Resources Director NZ 8th November 2019.

A sense of purpose can significantly improve psychological wellbeing, said Marcela Slepica, Clinical Director, AccessEAP.

Poor mental health and a lack of purpose in work can negatively impact employees and could make them feel worse.

Fires are out but impact still felt

Natural disasters: How can HR help? Published in Human Resources Director 28th September, 2019.

Natural disasters such as the recent Queensland and Northern NSW bushfires impact entire communities, including organisations, their employees and their families. 

Marcela Slepica Clinical Director at AccessEAP says a tragic disaster such as a bushfire can have a damaging effect on people, and it is common to experience a range of intense emotions following a traumatic event like a natural disaster. 

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This simple life change will make you more productive at work

Published in Lifestyle 9th August, 2019.

“We’ve become an ‘always-on’ society and while it may seem like a win for businesses, what they gain in hours is lost in efficiency,” says Marcela Slepica, Clinical Director at AccessEAP.

“Keeping our phones and laptops within arm’s reach at all times to work at any given time has a significant impact on our mental and physical health. In this fast-paced environment, something has to give, and for many it’s sleep. We are in a dangerous cycle of not getting all of the work done because we’re sleep deprived, and not sleeping because we’re not getting all of the work done,” Marcela tells.

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Ask "R U OK?" on September 12th

Published in Safety Solutions 3rd September, 2019.

Ahead of R U OK? Day on 12 September, we at AccessEAP are advising workplaces to focus on mental health issues, to normalise and have meaningful conversations to try to identify, help and avoid potential incidences of suicide. And while the day marks the starting point of communication within the workplace, it’s imperative to consider that a long-term commitment to suicide prevention is vital and should be instilled within every workplace.

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R U OK? Day: How can HR prepare?

Published in Human Resources Director 22nd August, 2019.

Over the course of an adult’s life, they will spend up to 4,821 days at work.

This creates an opportunity for managers and HR leaders to start a dialogue with their staff, according to Marcela Slepica, Clinical Director at AccessEAP.

Employees may be struggling to cope and employers can play a role in creating an environment of acceptance and to normalise asking for help. “Managers can ensure they are providing helpful information and the support structures which employees may need.”

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Support Act’s Wellbeing Helpline marks first anniversary

Published in The Music Network 6th August, 2019.

Support Act Ltd’s Wellbeing Helpline celebrates its first year of operation – and with some encouraging statistics. The free, confidential phone counselling service has been used by 150 artists, road crew and music workers from all genres to talk about any aspect of their mental health or wellbeing.

“We are very happy with the take up rate, and the feedback from service users has been extremely positive,” said Clive Miller, Sydney-based CEO of Support Act. “Having a dedicated helpline that is staffed by friendly, qualified clinicians who understand the challenges of working in the music industry can be an enormous help to someone who is struggling with mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, addiction, suicidal feelings; or issues which can be mental health related such as loneliness, relationship breakdown, financial worries, illness and workplace conflict.”

The Helpline is implemented by AccessEAP.

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Defusing challenging behaviours in the education industry

Published in the Education Review 1st August, 2019.

Educators play a vital role in the community and we collectively need to support them so they can do their job. Learning the skills to respond to emotionally charged situations is crucial for today’s teachers. To tackle this, AccessEAP has designed training programs for frontline employees who may face situations where they could potentially be at risk of physical or psychological harm, to learn skills to know how to respond. 

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Embracing emotion is key to leading a healthy workplace

Published in the Australian Design Review 27th June, 2019.

“Emotions and vulnerability are part of who we are and that doesn’t just go away when we enter the workplace,” explains Marcela Slepica, clinical director, Access EAP. “Opening up to colleagues and letting them know when I was feeling vulnerable, allowed me to make real connections, gain support and feel better sooner. Leaders should show compassion and support workers to do the same, simply put, leaders need to lead by example.”

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Good Behaviour Bonds - supporting our teachers

Marcela Slepica, Director of Clinical Services at AccessEAP, said that over the past five years there has been a 36% increase in the number of teachers seeking support from their counsellors.

“There are many more pressures on today’s teachers, including increasingly demanding or aggressive parents and escalating levels of classroom violence,” Slepica said. “This behaviour is unacceptable and there are severe impacts for teachers’ wellbeing when they are unsupported."

 

Click here for the excerpt from Issue 2, Vol 49 of the Independent Education, the professional journal of the Independent Education Union of Australia.