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Stress Management Training for Managers Case Study – Biffa Waste Services Ltd

Biffa Waste Services Ltd, one of the UK’s leading waste management companies, having recognised the importance of protecting the health, safety and welfare of its employees, finalised a company policy on managing stress at work.

The policy document stated that the management of stress was the responsibility of managers, the individual and the company itself. The detailed responsibilities of each of these stakeholders were clearly stated within the policy document. The overriding theme of the policy was to advocate a proactive approach that involved taking the initiative rather than waiting for a problem to arise.

The policy recognised that the management of stress was integral to the role of their line managers and supervisors. Managers were advised that stress should be recognised as a risk and that they should be alert to recognising hazards under the following broad categories:

  • Culture
  • Demands
  • Control
  • Relationships
  • Change
  • Role
  • Support

As part of the policy implementation the company approached In Equilibrium to run a pilot 1-day training course for managers called ‘Managers Managing Stress’. Course participants included: harassment and bullying counsellors; line managers; administration staff; Health + Safety; and the company Human Resources Director. Subsequent evaluation of this course was positive and the company determined that with relevant customisation this course would be suitable in supporting managers in meeting their responsibilities as stated in the policy document.

Before making a final decision the company asked In Equilibrium to provide an overview of the draft course for the directors of the company to approve before rolling it out to the rest of the management team. This 2nd session was also well received and agreement was reached with In Equilibrium to deliver a programme of Managers Managing Stress training course to all managers throughout the UK.

So far an estimated 150 managers have attended the Managers Managing Stress courses with collective course evaluations exceeding expectations. All delegates overwhelmingly agreed that the initiative was worthwhile, and applauded plans to create uniform awareness across the company.

Biffa’s HR Director has stated: ‘The course, which has been rolled out to all our Managers, has been extremely well received and has provided practical and helpful advice in tackling, managing and reducing stress in the workplace. Dot Gourlay’s presentation and interactive style supported by excellent documentation has made the course even more enjoyable.’

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