Menopause, in simple terms, is a natural part of being a woman and importantly, it’s normal! It isn’t something to be ashamed of or scared of and we are starting to see an increase in awareness in the workplace and what good leaders can do to support those going through it.
One of the most common myths about menopause is that it happens to women ‘over 50’ and it’s just mood swings and hot flushes. It has had negative connotations and been viewed by some as the transition to a woman being ‘past it’, no longer able to have children and time for her to disappear in to middle age. Yes, the hot flushes and mood changes are common, but the increase in awareness, particularly at work has started to educate people and make them realise that symptoms like forgetfulness, anxiety, depression and stress are just as common and can be supported in the workplace.
One of the major barriers for women going through any stage of menopause is that they feel unable to discuss their concerns with their line manager and it is this area that businesses can really add value by educating their staff on the subject and demonstrate how they can help, support and join the conversation so it becomes the ‘norm’. By supporting women through the menopause, organisations can benefit from increased engagement, empowerment and loyalty, as well as lower sickness absence and employee turnover.
The key is to giving that support is to appreciate that it’s not just ‘a HR issue’. Of course, HR will have a role to play in supporting the business in their legal duty to ensure working conditions don’t exacerbate someone’s symptoms and to protect employees from discrimination, but the majority of direct support must come from line managers and colleagues. In a business world trying to foster equality, diversity and inclusion, we all have a part to play in supporting our friends and colleagues.
If you want to raise awareness in your workplace, please get in touch for further information by calling us on 01623 409824 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Talk to us about:
- Awareness workshops for women
- Awareness workshops for men and women
- Training workshops for People Managers
- Training workshops for HR / L&D professionals & Key Stakeholders