Swanstaff Recruitment held their third annual Week of Wellbeing (WoW) from 8th-12th October. The week was structured with a different theme each day covering all aspects of well-being including physical activity, mental health, healthy diets, and mindfulness. The week kick-started with a Hula Challenge and a team pedometer challenge which would run throughout the week. Tuesday was Healthy Eating day where a Recipe book was shared and members of staff were encouraged to share their own favourite healthy lunches – this inspired a large group of staff to club together and cook an amazing team meal! Wednesday was Laughter day – members of staff were able to award a Comic Genius badge to their colleagues via our People HR system and a Pun Competition circulated via email. Thursday was Mental Health Awareness Day and coincided with our Quarterly All Staff Meeting, we invited a speaker from Bexley Mind to come in and speak to employees and also ran a Quiz, Raffle and Backwards Bingo which raised £219 for Mind. We also had our quarterly awards presentations which included WoW awards for the winners of the Comic Genius and Hula Challenges alongside our usual sales and performance awards. Friday was Relaxation day! We circulated calming audio tracks to all teams and set up a relaxation space for staff to enjoy 10 minutes of guided mindfulness during the day. The room was used by many staff and there was great feedback on how it helped them to re-focus and be more productive for the rest of the day. the winners of our Pedometer challenge were also announced with our Accounts team smashing an amazing 62,004 steps over 5 days! They were rewarded with a Wellbeing hamper of goodies. Overall the Swanstaff teams stepped over 400,000 steps (counting 1 person's steps per team, per day). The Wellbeing week received some fantastic feedback from employees across the business including: “Laura was the best speaker we’ve had at a quarterly, she was really engaging and helped make a taboo subject easy to talk about” “The pedometer challenge really made me pay attention to how much exercise I do daily, I’m definitely going to continue tracking my steps” “I loved cooking a healthy meal with my colleagues and it felt great to feed 15 people that probably would have eaten fast food otherwise” “It felt good to win the Comic Genius award, knowing I make my colleagues laugh and happy is great” We have had some great suggestions from staff for the next WoW week and we can’t wait to get planning for 2019!
For the majority of us, work is the focal point of our lives. It is where we spend most of our time, where we get our income and often where we make our lifelong friends. Having a fulfilling job, that you don’t dread waking up for every morning, can be good for your mental health and general wellbeing. However if you’re mental health isn’t at it’s best right now, we have put together some tips on how to support yourself. Talk about your feelings Depending on your personality, talking about your feelings can be the easiest thing in the world or the hardest thing you will ever do. However, it can help to talk about them when you’re feeling troubled as you may find that others feel the same, and that can be very reassuring. If you find it hard to talk to just anyone about your feelings, then you could try to identify someone who you feel comfortable with and who you think could be supportive. Think about when and where would be a good time for you to speak about it. Keep active Keeping up regular exercise can boost self-esteem and confidence. It can increase concentration as it will allow you to sleep better as you’ll be burning more energy. Experts say everybody should get at least thirty minutes exercise five days a week. This doesn’t mean you have to sign up to a gym and become a body builder; this could be walking on your lunch break or joining a local fitness club. Eat well and drink sensibly Maintaining a diet that is good for your physical health is also great for your mental health. Try to drink around eight-eleven glasses of water a day. If it’s inconvenient to keep getting up and filling your glass a fair few times, then buy a litre bottle and then you only have to fill it up around three times during the whole day. Meal prepping is also a huge factor of being healthy. The night before you go to work prep a low carb meal for lunch and have fruit for breakfast. Also pack some light snacks such as carrots to snack on through the day. Ask for help We’re only human. We all get tired and sometimes overwhelmed with the workload we take on. But what you must remember is to ask for help if you feel yourself getting down because of it. Your first point of call would be to contact your GP; they may be able to refer you to a counsellor or can point in the right direction if you want to think about your decision. Take a break Taking a break can definitely help. If you are struggling at work and are really stressed, take yourself away into a quiet space and just sit for five to ten minutes. Also make sure that if your company offers mental health days, you take them! They can help you a lot more than you think. Sleeping can also make you feel better. Set an alarm and sleep on your commute to work, or if you drive to work, sleep for a little while on your lunch break! Remember, the recommended amount of sleep for adults is eight hours. Do something you’re good at Maybe revisit a hobby you were good at in school? Running, arts and crafts, writing… anything! Or even just do tasks at work that you know you enjoy. Doing this will help you to feel good in yourself and help you to gain some confidence. Can you think of any other tips that we may have missed? Drop them in the comments below!
With a small amount of training and practice, the majority of people can drive a car; however, it takes a special kind of person to be able to drive a HGV. These people are more than just point A-B drivers. Think you’ve got what it takes to make it as a HGV driver? Check out these top tips on how you can be the best HGV driver… Self-sufficient and the ability to work independently Having personal freedom is part of the attraction to HGV driving, especially long-distance driving. The chance to be alone for the majority of your day, being in complete control over your own driving and your vehicle is something some other workers envy. If you’re the type of person that needs flowing conversation and a busy workplace in order to get through the day, you may struggle with this kind of career. HGV drivers often spend long stretches of time driving alone and therefore must be able to handle being by themselves and having complete responsibility for the truck and the goods it transports. Spatially aware If you are naturally in tune with the world around you, manoeuvring a HGV in tight spaces will be no problem for you. Whether it be finding your way along narrow streets or anticipating hazards such as street furniture or pedestrians, it helps to be spatially aware. Most drivers soon get the hang of knowing what’s going on around their vehicle. Technically literate You don’t need to be a mechanic, but when the unexpected happens, it helps to have a reasonable understanding of your vehicle. Even more importantly, these skills can help you recognise problems before they occur, so you can take tactical action and save the time of a lengthy delay while repairs take place. Cool-headed If your blood pressure shoots to the sky every time another driver does something daft, a career on the road probably isn’t the best move for you. As well as not being good for your health. A HGV driver needs to be able to manage their anger. Expecting poor driving from others and giving them plenty of time and space, (especially learner, new and elderly drivers) has to be second nature. Sense of responsibility A HGV driver should have a good sense of responsibility. If goods were to be damaged due to the way the driver was driving and that was clear to anyone then you should take responsibility as this would look better than blatantly lying to someone’s face (especially an employer). Alertness A HGV driver must be alert at all times and able to be quick to respond to the road and driving conditions they are faced with. They must ensure they are well-rested and able to handle the task at hand. This is a huge potential hazard if not carried out due to the fact that if a driver is half asleep at the wheel then they can be causing danger to themselves and other road users. Customer service skills HGV drivers must have excellent customer service skills when dealing with clients who are either shipping or receiving goods carried in the vehicle. You are the face of the company so, therefore, have to be on top of your game. Stamina As a HGV Driver you should have good stamina for the loading and unloading of goods, some can be very heavy and therefore needs someone strong to be able to unload with no issues. Also, drivers need stamina for the long drives a trip involves, this means that they ideally should not have any back issues that could suddenly cause pain whilst driving and distract them. Good Time Management Driver’s should always ensure they’re consistently making all pick-ups and deliveries on-time. This is essential because if they are late or don’t show then it can reflect badly on the company you are working for and therefore result in losing business and money. Think we missed any other top tips? Let us know in the comments below! Also, if you’re looking to become a HGV Driver, take a look at what jobs we could offer you here!