19 Issue 4
Chapter Meeting - April 2012
Fri, 04/13/2012 - 11:15am - 1:00pm
Speaker: Elizabeth Darby Rehm, J.D., The Kullman Firm
Violence and Bullying
Sponsor: Daily Access
Fee: $15 for MSHRM members, $17 for guests
Location: Heron Lakes Country Club, 3851 Government
Boulevard, Mobile, AL 36693
Register online - Deadline is Thursday 3:00pm
Gulf Coast Human Resources Conference
The Gulf Coast Human Resources Conference is November
9th and plans
for the event are in full-swing! It’s time for those who are interested
in exhibitor booths and sponsorships to start signing up to participate.
Contact Scott Dwelle or Leilani Reed-Logan at firstname.lastname@example.org to
Click on ad image to see enlarged view
Posted Next Month
ATTENTION New Members:
Everyone please update your on-line membership profile
on the web-site (www.mobileshrm.org).
After logging-in on the "CLUB
to "My Profile" and update your information.
There is log-in assistance if you can't remember
your log-in or password. Of particular importance
is your e-mail address. This is the groups preferred
manner of communications and is extremely important.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact
the treasurer, at email@example.com.
Would you like to have an opportunity to market
your company’s products or services to a captive audience of HR professionals?
Limited opportunities are available, as there can be only one sponsor
for each regular meeting.Contact Kay Watson at firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve your month!
Sponsor a Mobile
Society for Human Resource Management chapter meeting and you’ll have
an exclusive opportunity to do just that! For only $400, sponsors may
have an exhibit near the check-in table, place literature on each table,
and have an opportunity to speak briefly about their companies during
the meeting agenda. What could be better than that?
GPSHRM Legal Conference
May 9, 2012
The Greater Pensacola Chapter of SHRM & The
Escambia-Santa Rosa Bar Association
DEADLINE: MAY 2nd, 2012*********
Location: New World Landing, Pensacola, Florida
Date: Wednesday, May 9, 2012
Time: 8:15 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. (Registration/Continental
Breakfast at 7:45)
HRCI/CLE: Have submitted to HRCI and Florida Bar for review
Click here for full agenda
Click here for registration form
Job Fair Set for April 19
The South Alabama Regional Planning Commission’s
14th Annual Business Expo/Jobs Fair will take place atthe Mobile
Civic Center Expo Hall on Thursday, April 19, 2012.
Managed Health Care
We appreciate your support of our chapter and our mission!
** All Door Prize Donors will be recognized in our Monthly Newsletter
For more info contact Becky Lovgren at email@example.com
(Door prizes are needed for future meetings)
Helping Employees with Mood Disorders
On January 30, 2012 · In Dealing
By Debra Stang
This article has been sponsored by:
It’s ten o’clock on a Tuesday morning. Rose sits at her desk in the
secretary pool, but her mind is clearly elsewhere. Suddenly, she
jumps to her feet and runs out of the room. Her boss notices but
doesn’t comment. Twenty minutes later, Rose returns to her desk.
Her eyes are red from crying, but her focus has improved. She slips
on her headset and begins typing a letter that her boss had dictated
earlier that morning.
Rose’s story is a simple example of how, with a little flexibility,
mood disorders can be accommodated in the workplace.
Mood disorders are mental health problems that profoundly affect
a person’s emotions. The Harvard Mental Health Letter, released in
February 2010, which addressed mental disorders in the workplace,
estimated that about six percent of the population in the United
States meets diagnostic criteria for a major depressive episode,
and one percent can be diagnosed with bipolar disorder.
The letter also cited studies showing that in workplaces where depressed
employees received adequate treatment, the number of job-related
accidents, sick days, and instances of employee turnover declined,
while the number of hours worked and the overall productivity of
the workplace went up.
For those that are committed to helping employees with mood disorders
thrive in work place—and consequently creating a better environment
for all of your employees—there are some steps one can take.
1. Provide an Employee Assistance Program & Adequate
Mental Health Benefits
An EAP allows employees to anonymously access a third-party mental
health provider for a limited number of visits at the company’s expense.
Employers who advertise their EAP and encourage employees to use
it go a long way towards demonstrating a tolerance for mental health
issues in the workplace.
Employers also need to be sure that their health insurance policy
covers treatment for mental illnesses. Jason Evan Mihalko, a licensed
psychologist with a private practice in Cambridge, Massachusetts,
states that a good mental health benefit is “the most cost effective
benefit for employers to buy.”
2. Educate Your Staff about Mental Illness
The sum of what most people know about mental illness comes from
Hollywood and televised court cases involving lurid crimes. As a
result, people who have mental illnesses are often feared and stigmatized.
Karen Muranko, a mental health worker who has a history of panic
disorder, says she never disclosed her illness to her bosses because
she feared losing her job. “I’d go out to my car, have a panic attack,
and go right back to work,” she remembers.
In addition, an employer should train frontline managers on how to
respond appropriately to employees with mood disorders who request
reasonable accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act.
3. Avoid Making Assumptions about the Employee’s Needs
If an employee comes to you to disclose a mood disorder, don’t jump
in to suggest solutions. Instead, listen to the employee’s requests.
Remember that each employee’s needs are unique, and that what has
worked well for another employee with the same problem may not adequately
address the needs of this employee. “Lots of people working with
mood disorders do not need any kind of special accommodations,” she
says, adding that an employee is most likely to require accommodations
when a mood disorder is initially diagnosed, or during a flare-up
of depression or mania.
4. Limit Your Discussions with the Employee to Work-Related
focus should always remain on the employee’s ability to do his or
her job. If performance at work or behavior towards co-workers
becomes unacceptable, take the employee behind closed doors
and express your concerns about job-related issues. During
this conversation, you can make a neutral statement like,
“If any of this is caused by personal issues, we have an
excellent EAP which can help you work things out.”
With this type of encouragement, the employee may disclose having
a mood disorder and request reasonable accommodations to help with
his or her job performance. Always take requests for accommodations
seriously and discuss them as soon as possible with the human resources
department and with upper level management who will decide whether
a given request is “reasonable” and make appropriate arrangements
with the employee.
People with untreated mood disorders can create havoc in the workplace;
people who receive the treatment and accommodations they need can
number among your most creative and productive employees. Does your
organization provide an environment that encourages employees with
a mental health disorder to communicate honestly about their job-related
Some employers joke that they would prefer not to know about such
issues, but as Eisaguirre used to remind her business clients, “You
don’t want the first notice that something is wrong to be the subpoena
that lands on your desk.” Avoid that kind of nasty wake-up call and
help your employees thrive by taking steps to bring mental health
awareness into your office.
for Leading Diveristy & Inclusion
SOCIETY FOR HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT
The Mobile, Alabama chapter of SHRM exists to promote quality human resource
practice among local industries, businesses, educational institutions, and government
agencies. We bring together leading practitioners to provide education, networking
and discussion of various human resource topics and to identify the best practices
for all aspects of human resource and industrial relations work.
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