Birmingham City Council (BCC)
City wide Stress Management Project
In 2003 Birmingham City Council (BCC), which employed approximately 50,000 people, took the decision to instigate a City wide Stress Project. AUM senior consultant Hansa Pankhania was one of the key people involved in the steering group tasked with setting up and cascading stress awareness within BCC.
Process and Content
A steering group with representatives from Health and Safety, HR, Training, Senior Management Team, Occupational Health, Counselling Services and Union was formed. Based on the results of a staff survey, certain departments within BCC were prioritised for input.
Hansa Pankhania co-produced and delivered core briefings to Managers on their legal responsibilities in applying their duty of care and addressing employee stress. The content included:
- Business case for addressing stress within BCC
- How to identify stress in staff, the short and long term symptoms
- Organisational factors and costs of stress
- Stress and the Law, managers’ legal duty towards addressing welfare and care of staff
- Management tools and techniques to support stressed employees.
She also co- produced a train the trainers , one day course for managers and two day course for employees which was widely used across the City.
In addition she developed a ten module online Managing Stress Course with topics covering Understanding the concept of stress, stress reducing techniques, assertiveness, time management, positive thinking, diet and exercise, emotional intelligence, stress and personality, holistic approaches to stress management, and organisational stress.
The training material is still used by BCC Health and safety section, the online Managing Stress programme is extensively accessed by BCC staff, the City wide counselling team use the online programme material as handouts for clients and Hansa Pankhania continues to support BCC managers and employees as an affiliate of their Staffcare Team.
“Birmingham City Council is the largest local authority in Europe with around 50,000 employees. Hansa has worked for Birmingham as an affiliated Consultant over many years. She was one of the key people in the development of the Council’s Stress Policy and consequent formation of a Stress Project, cascading stress awareness across the Council. As part of this project, Hansa both produced and delivered Manager Briefings and Staff Training on related issues. She also wrote and produced an online Stress Management Programme that remains widely used and appreciated on the intranet. Hansa’s work is always of the highest quality: ethical, boundaried and dynamic”.
Dr Haydn Williams
Clinical Lead – Staffcare
Birmingham City Council