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By Kerstin Andlaw

The intention of the Working Minds event was to raise awareness of the importance of supporting people’s wellbeing at work, to share ideas and possible interventions and to highlight that companies in Gibraltar are already taking action with regards to this.

It was a privilege to hear the event panellists, Marcus Killick – CEO of Isolas LLP, Angelique Linares – Managing Director of EY, Hannah Pilcher – Director of Operations at the FSC, Saskia Donald – VP HR at Addison Global and Justin Phillips – Partner at Phillips LLP share their experience and insights from their varying backgrounds. Each brought a unique view and contribution to the discussion from board level, start-up, larger and smaller company perspective, highlighting that there is no one-size-fits-all solution, but many different approaches.

It was therefore great to see the event being sold out and the interest that was created following on from that. It demonstrates that companies in Gibraltar are keen to address wellbeing at work with a proactive and preventative approach to tackle the effects of our fast-paced, highly pressured professional and personal lives.

Working Minds will be contributing regular articles exclusively for The Gibraltar Magazine about wellbeing at work over the coming year, and you are invited to join the Working Minds LinkedIn group (search Working Minds Gibraltar) which features the full video of the October event, plus interviews with local and international business leaders sharing their ideas and approaches to wellbeing at work, and how they have been implemented, some on a global scale. The idea of the group is to provide resources and inspiration to support companies to create the solutions that work best for their company and their people.

There is no one-size-fits-all solution, but many different approaches.

I am very encouraged with the responses and support generated by Working Minds in 2019, and more locally the support Working Minds has received by leaders from within Gibraltar. There is much work ahead and a few key points that are worth considering if we are to tackle the crisis that is stress, pressure, anxiety and depression affecting people in Gibraltar and across the globe.

We need to consider mental health not as a problem that needs fixing, but as an opportunity to grow and evolve. This will also become more important as technology and bio engineering advance and our world continues to change. Resilience and adaptability will become our most important tools.

We need to stop looking for solutions within our circumstances and our environment (we often cannot change our circumstance). Instead we need to create a better experience through a shift in mindset that empowers people to take ownership of their experience.

We need to stop fixing people or even suggesting that they need fixing or improving and instead support them to discover their own capabilities, resilience, and wellbeing that they already have access to.

We need to stop wasting our time focusing on what we do and adding more to people’s to-do lists and really consider how we do what we do. Adding more and more strategies and tools to our already busy schedules only creates more stress and pressure. Instead, let’s look at how can you go about doing what is required of you in a different mindset, with a different approach in order to create a better experience for yourself.

In short, what is required is a shift in perspective in how we approach wellbeing, and in some parts of the world this shift has already begun. Gibraltar is small and agile and able to show the world the positive impact the right approach can have on a whole community and the business landscape.

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