Is work from home stressful? Companies rope in psychiatrists, experts for counselling

Mumbai: Several companies are reaching out to counsellors and psychiatrists to help those employees stressed about working from home, as an extended lockdown period starts taking a toll on their emotional wellbeing.

Microsoft, P&G and Deloitte are among companies that have sought professional assistance to help employees tackle the turmoil due to social distancing, now extended for three weeks, and working remotely.

Microsoft has roped in experts who will hold conversations with both employees and managers for about 45-60 minutes on the importance of “mental health and wellbeing in the new world,” understanding Covid-19 and guidance on self-care and working in a virtual world.

“Humans are hard-wired for connection. So, in a world where work is becoming more remote, we have been working on technology that bridges the gap between our digital and physical worlds,” said Ira Gupta, Head– HR, Microsoft India.

Deloitte, on the other hand, has set up a counselling helpline, where HR executives call employees almost every day. When they think an expert is required, they refer the employee to a counsellor.

P&G has been hosting webinars and inviting experts to help employees manage their mental and emotional wellbeing.

“For us, mental health is part of the well-being of our employees as the topmost priority, and even more so during these unprecedented times. We also have a 24×7 helpline that is available not only for employees but also their family members seeking assistance on mental wellbeing or any stress and anxiety related issues,” said Srinivas PM, Head – Human Resources, P&G Indian Subcontinent.

People in the know said that while most employees have to address the new reality of working from home and the consequent emotional turmoil, in most cases the younger employees are facing bigger issues.

Many companies fear that millennials working from home are not used to social distancing and may end up depressed or may show psychological side-effects. In such cases, counsellors and psychologists are helping them navigate this phase and focus on work while being away from the workplace. “We have seen that many executives under the age of 30 have to be hand-held during this time. Many of the top performers who are now stranded at home are facing more emotional issues,” said a senior executive at a multinational firm.

Source Article