image description

Caring when times are tough

May 18th, 2015 by Suzanne Sweeney

Facing redundancy and closure due to a merger with Hapag Lloyd, the CSAV team in Liverpool approached Windmills to explore how we could support the 40+ members of staff affected.

Having received a recommendation from Zim who were supported by Windmills last year when a similar closure took place, Goranka Bosanac HR Manager spoke to the team to explore how she could support those staff members being made redundant.

Windmills focused on explaining the Monday chapter of “No Regrets on Sunday” (from the Windmills portfolio) which introduces readers to the equation of E+R=O, as an aid to try and help staff to explore how they were feeling about the events at CSAV – the event (E) and the individual’s reaction (R) to it will determine the outcome (O).

Staff were offered a drop-in session where they could chat to the team about what they were thinking, what support they felt they needed and how Windmills could help. Those that came along were positioned along a continuum with some seeing the closure as an opportunity to launch them into a new chapter in their lives – they had ideas, plans, energy and enthusiasm for what they wanted to do and were keen to get going. At the other end of the continuum were individuals who responded in the stereo-typical “rabbit in headlights” – frozen in the moment and unsure of what to do next. Their emotion mixing with the practicalities of what they needed to do.

Care in the first instance was needed – meeting people where they were, building trust, acting with integrity to support them with what they wanted to do, being professional and calm to enabling them to determine what their focus was and the practical actions they wanted to take.

Offering an initial half day session exploring skills, passions, motivations, and values to develop a vision for the future, staff commented…..

“It is possible to change direction if you really want to and there are lots of different avenues you can take.”

“I have more skills and experience than I realised.”

“There are opportunities if you look at what you enjoy.”


A further one day workshop was designed with the focus on how to “Get Selected” enabling staff to explore what they needed to do to look for work, make applications, practice answering questions and gaining practical hints and tips for interview process. The workshop looked at:

  • Importance of thorough preparation – knowing yourself well – your strengths, weaknesses preferences.
  • How to match your skills and experience to the employer’s requirements
  • Preparing your answers to common interview questions like – Tell me about yourself? Why do you want to work here?
  • Preparing answers to competency based questions using STAR – and trying these out on other members of the group
  • Comparing their CV to a checklist of do’s and don’ts for successful  CV’s
  • Managing interview nerves Staff commented:“I feel the workshop has helped motivate me to update my CV, to make it better and also to apply for jobs as I have a better understanding on interview process.”“Given me confidence that I have got the skills required to get another job” 

    86% said they felt more confident about approaching the selection process

    93% said they now know what they need to do prepare effectively for the selection process



  • Posted in Uncategorized
  • Comments Off on Caring when times are tough

Comments are closed.