Photo by Vicko Mozara on Unsplash

It has been a really good Summer this year, with a perfect mix of a chance to step back a bit and develop some new work and also enough delivering sessions to ensure that we keep cash flowing. Back in July Suzanne and Emma delivered the Devon leg of the AFI behavioural safety programme (our long running series with the wonderful AFI Uplift) and we found the vibe in Devon to be particularly chilled whilst at the same time being productive. The depot in Exeter struck the right balance between mental wellbeing and efficiencies. Much of the session was taken with us asking them how they did it so we can spread the word to other depots!  It is quite a challenge when a company like AFI, which acquires other platform companies with slightly different cultures, wants to build the mutually beneficial mindset, how do you build one's culture out of such diversity? The answer is to keep the conversation going and to keep it constructive. The Exeter depot in early July was brimming with positivity. Shortly after this I developed a new piece on mental well being. I am really excited about this new offering. 

This new session begins with a monologue (as do all our sessions). The setting is an award ceremony in which a smart corporate woman is collecting an award for ‘Fastest Growth in Sector’ on behalf of her company Fear Factors PLC. In her acceptance speech she shares the secret of Fear Factors' success, reveals the business model and shares insights into how best to grow their pipeline via strategic partnerships. Early in the piece we learn that Fear Factors is a company which promotes depression to the population at large. This sinister, yet amusing, piece will address the reasons why depression is on the up and hints at some threats to depression’s 'market stronghold’. The goals of the session are to build a start up to make wellbeing an integral part of running a profitable business, and to see it as part and parcel of success, as opposed to a luxury.

The session will generate discussion and address any notion that poor mental health is normal. We’re rolling this session out with Amey and also Jotun. And finally we had another ‘first’ which formed the final part of a trilogy of pieces we have been delivering for SSE and Balfour Beatty. This session sees the brilliant revival of ‘Below Par’, the story of a site supervisor with dinosaur views on safety culture. The session gave the group a chance to practice behaviours and to design a tool box for handling difficult people. This third piece follows a session we call “put the coffee down’ which looks at tricky managers and also the Gail’s Shoes story gathering session. We love adding to the products and re-shaping and honing ideas with our clients so that we can create long running packages and develop dialogues with the workforce. The sessions are always fun and engaging well as psychologically poignant. After a few weeks on a sun lounger I am now raring to go for what is shaping up to be a busy autumn, with a new team member in tow, actress Carolin Head. We’ll do a feature on our team in next month’s newsletter. Till then, stay safe and keep communicating well!

Emma Currie