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COVID-19 Black Swan

By Dr. Madison Hanscom A company’s safety culture can be described by the collection of attitudes, beliefs, norms, and values surrounding safety and risks in an organization. It also indicates the extent to which the company values people above and beyond production. So, by definition, it is most certainly related. A company with a deeply embedded culture for safety will treat COVID-19 protections and conversations as important – just like any other component of safety like fall protection or chemical handling. Safety is safety. It’s hard to imagine a company with a mature, strong safety culture that is not responding well

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By Madison Hanscom, PhD Researchers collected data from over a thousand adults in US to get a sense of what factors were associated with an individual having greater psychological resilience during the first few weeks of the COVID-19 lockdown (Kilgore, Taylor, Cloonan, & Dailey, 2020). They defined resilience as the ability to withstand setbacks, adapt positively, and bounce back from adversity. Although there are a great deal of factors related to resiliency (e.g., see our blog on The researchers found the following factors to be significantly associated with greater resilience during the COVID-19 lockdown: • More days a week spent outside in the

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By Madison Hanscom, PhD COVID-19 has changed our way of life inside and outside of work. It has forced us to rethink the way we work and enjoy time off. Businesses have been hit extremely hard, and most have been forced to make fast decisions to protect workers and customers. Many companies found themselves responding in ways to stay resilient. Millions of workers transitioned to a virtual model, and for those still onsite, there are new ways of doing things and approaching everyday work. As a result of these changes, cultural norms have been upended. What was valued in the past might no

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By Madison Hanscom, PhD Burnout is deep and pervasive. It is marked by emotional exhaustion, physical fatigue, cynicism towards others, and depleted mental resources (1). The bad news: Burnout has negative effects on everyone. It is related to turnover, lessened productivity, counterproductive work behavior, lower motivation, and negative health outcomes (3). The side effects of burnout can last a long time. Burnout in time is associated with diseases in the long term (e.g., musculoskeletal, cardiovascular) and mental health consequences such as depression, insomnia, and anxiety (4). Helping a workforce suffering from burnout is not an easy task. The good news: Burnout does not

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By Dale LawrenceReady for a busy day? Your first day back to the office. Got your Americano?  Check. Look at your phone and see that you still have 15 minutes before your meeting. Just enough time to catch the elevator to the twelfth-floor office, check email and then review some documents for your client meeting. However, as you approach the lobby, you see a line of people. Upon inspection, they are queuing with socially distanced spacing for the elevators. This is not good! Looking at the time again, you know the ability to get ready for the meeting is doomed. Due

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By Madison Hanscom, PhDWhen times get tough, we often rely on our communities to help us prevail. Our communities are composed of everyone around us — neighbors, friends, those who work at the grocery store, the people who run the local brewery. 2020 has been a hard year. When people are suffering, the community suffers. There are things business leaders can do to support the community. In the research literature we study something called Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) — this is when companies do good for society, and this goes above and beyond what is required by the law or regulations. This might be directed

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