To support this blog, I’d like to recommend this short video from It’s OK to Talk (It’s OK Baat Karo). This 2 minute video can help give an understanding that there is such a vast spectrum of mental health and where we stand on this spectrum is not fixed. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jyWhL2tOFgU
Life is a journey with lots of ups and downs. How we cope with our life experiences relies on building resilience, having access to support and a safe speak up culture. It is OK to not feel OK and yet more often than not we try to put on our best smile and mask how we are feeling, but this can have damaging effects on other aspects of our lives. We cannot put our emotions and feelings in a box when we work, there is not an on/off switch. Life events carry into work and work challenges carry into home life.
At Siemens Financial Services (SFS), we have been actively working to break the stigma attached to mental health. As part of my role, I’m trying to instigate change within SFS and create a culture of mental and physical well-being for all employees. We encourage everyone to be themselves at work, and everyone has access to a confidential independent helpline with many services that I have personally made use of. Following a terrible life event when my husband and two sons were in a car crash – resulting in physical injuries and emotional trauma – the helpline helped me get face-to-face counselling. I also have access to mental health first aiders who on several occasions were able to offer in-the-moment support when post-traumatic stress was triggered on my journey into work.
Outside of this I have gained support with my ‘imposter syndrome’ which was getting in the way of taking on new challenges and stepping outside of my comfort zone. This includes workshops facilitated by in-house networks, coaching and mentoring, and encouragement from colleagues.
My story is just one of many. We all have mental health – what will you do different today to pay more attention to yours?
Claire Fleetwood Business Culture and Change Manager
I have been with SFS for 6 years and my role has developed and grown, enabling me to drive business change and improvement with a high focus on organisational development and culture. We are committed to improving our culture across Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and leaning into Conversations that Matter for a feedback rich culture. I support my colleagues within SFS and across my Siemens UK network with performance coaching and mentoring as well as supporting our Women’s and Lean in Networks.
I love spending time with my husband and two teenage sons. We also have a new addition to the family, a Cockapoo puppy who has transformed our lives and home. My passions are cooking and dining out, and I love a good movie too!