While corporate houses are trying to outdo each other by offering financial assistance to their employees amidst the second wave of the pandemic, Bridgestone India has initiated measures to de-stress its workforce and ensure their psychological wellbeing.
The tyre manufacturing company has directed that every Monday, till 1 p.m., all employees will follow a ‘No Meeting’ zone. This will give them almost half a day to organise their work and priorities for the week. The Company also has a fixed lunch time for all employees, with no online meetings scheduled during that time. These steps ensure that employees follow a healthy regime.
In addition, for the next three months, there will be one Friday off for all employees so that they get an extended weekend to spend quality time with their families. Employees have been instructed to log off by 5 p.m.
Yet another initiative, ‘Take 5’, allows employees to take five consecutive days off work to energise and reinvigorate themselves. These initiatives have been introduced in both the Bridgestone plants, in Pune and Indore and across its offices in India.
“Our initiatives are aimed at addressing these issues and ensuring that our team-members work destressed and have quality time for themselves and their families,” says Apurv Choubey, CHRO, Bridgestone India.
Like so many other organisations, Bridgestone has helped set up two oxygen generator plants in Pune and at Devi Ahilya Covid Care Centre, Indore. The Bridgestone Group has contributed 56 ventilators, 120 oxygen concentrators and 10,000 N-95 Masks during these challenging times. It has also been fulfilling the need for PPE kits and other safety equipment of Covid care centres in Pune and Indore.
It has thoughtfully reached out to the trucker community, providing them COVID safety kits and quarantine/isolation facilities, as they are the ones who ensure smooth transportation and supply of goods across the country.
“We are grateful to be able to mobilise global support from the Bridgestone family towards procuring essential medical equipment and help us reach out to many more in need,” says Parag Satpute, MD, Bridgestone India
Another company that has focussed on relieving the stress of its employees, is Publicis Sapient (PS). This three-decade old digital consulting firm runs a 30-minute live meditation session for its employees every day. It has been organising mental health sessions with specific focus on vulnerable groups – women, people facing domestic violence and more. Online sessions have been conducted to teach employees to manage anxiety, depression, loss and grief in these times. Other than ensuring that calming Zoom backgrounds are used for soothing effect, the Company has been doing its bit to spread awareness around mental health, through mental health first aiders and mental health playbook. Free counselling is available for the employees and their dependents 24×7. The sessions with the counsellor are kept anonymous.
Vestige Marketing, on the other hand, has come up with a unique initiative called Vestige Radio. This on-demand radio channel is aimed at engaging and connecting with employees and distributors across geographies in India. Vestige Radio is designed as a platform to thank everyone for putting in their best efforts, to listen to people’s challenges, and to interact with them to create solutions. It was launched to meet the expectations of the employees shared via webinars, and has episodes on motivation, ‘Sochne ki Himmat’, ‘Muskurahatein’, and the Vestige Helpline, to keep everyone’s spirits up.
Senior managers, employees and guest speakers share motivational speeches, followed by live performances to de-stress. ‘Sochney Ki Himmat’ allows employees to share their stories of courage and excitement. These stories reach out to over I crore 35 lakh distributors across India and keeps them motivated and engaged.
The health and wellness company has also organised a vaccination-for-all programme, offered insurance cover for all employees and facilitated critical care equipment for the needy.
Gautam Bali, MD, Vestige Marketing, reiterates the Company’s commitment to “steadfastly stand by our employees, distributors and stakeholders in their hour of need.”
Its COVID support initiative called SAMVAAD encourages regular interactions with COVID positives, as well as those recovered and affected so that they can share their stories of inspiration, information, and encouragement. Aseem Nath Tripathi, VP – HR explains, “This is aimed at letting everyone know that they are not alone in this battle. Under our SAMVAAD initiative, we have been in constant contact with those afflicted, ailing and those who have suffered loss.” This renders a feeling of security to the employees and brings in positivity and motivation.