Grief can impact people in various ways, and it’s important to remember that allowing yourself or someone to grieve is a healthy part of healing.Whether people locate their sense of self in the brain or the heart can have a major influence on people's decision-making, reactions and recovery. If your using your brain to function at work when your heart is broken into pieces, this effects not only your ultimate productivity and creativity but the co-workers who are also picking up the slack.
What happens when your 3 day bereavement holiday is over and it's time to return to work? How can you possibly focus on the job at hand and truly be productive when you just buried your parent or even your child? Is 3 days enough time or even 2 weeks? Why do employers allow an employee so much time to bring a life into this world ( Maternity-Paternity Leave) yet 3 days to say good-bye to someone we love?
Bereavement in the work place is still a new conversation for Human Resources and Managers to embrace yet productivity and concentration of the employee is a real concern and how to address the discussion is still extremely awkward and lacking. The Bereavement topic is something Corporations are now starting to address like Facebook who recently expanded their employee benefits to include 20 days of paid Bereavement Leave in the event of an immediate family member's death and 10 days for an extended family member.
When my son Bryant was killed tragically at the age of 17 years old in an auto accident I was fortunate enough to be working for a large company that was still considered private sector and I was given much leeway in my sudden and unexpected mourning. Only 5 months later this company was launched as a publicly traded organization with an entirely new set of policy and procedures that didn't support the leeway I was given to future employees facing this devastation.
As a Business Professional, RN and Certified Grief Expert I have been in the Healthcare industry for 25 years. The last 14 years I have spent in the Medical Business " Corporate America " Industry where there is a cultivated sense of " business as usual" and "tough it out" mentality. We will call in Grief Counselors after a mass crisis but Corporations are missing a key component in serving their employees after a personal crisis that will effect their work environment and that of their co-workers just because its just never been part of our business identity. We live in a world where counseling isn't enough, we need our employers to be understanding and be better educated to our suffering.
Empowerment is Beauty LLC is serving Corporations and Small Businesses with the training needed to change Bereaved paid-leave policies and equip Supervisors and co-workers with Educational materials needed to address difficult conversations regarding grief and loss. This has allowed more and more companies to expand benefits and become proactive after an employees loss. Without better policies and training for Management, the employee feels alone, guilty for their lack of concentration and low productivity as well as a lower morale between other co-workers who are unable to address the "elephant in the room" for fear of saying or doing the wrong thing.
In the case of grief at work, at the end of the day bringing heart to the business allows for individual needs to be met, gives employees a sense of acceptance and comfort and helps the bereaved get back to work.