The message that certainly stood out at Novembers Waffle ‘Bottle the Habit’ was that
We found that although a lot of companies adopt a ‘zero tolerance’ approach, they often don’t back up their policies with training or alcohol awareness education.
The message was clearly delivered by those attending the session that in order to have a fair and equal Drugs and Alcohol policy, not only should it apply to all members of staff, whether they work in the warehouse or the office, support should be offered to staff who may have failed a blood test, rather than taking the route of instant dismissal.
People often forget that a few pints of beer that you had on a Thursday night after work with your friends may still be in your system the next morning when you go to work, and you may be over the limit to even drive, let alone work.
When we discussed Alcoholism at our Waffle event – an attendee said that “Alcoholism is a disease and not a crime, with the right support Alcoholism can be ‘cured’ but that person needs to realise that they have a problem before this can happen, and they need to identify the causal factors behind it. It could be that increased stress levels at work may have lead to binge drinking and then on to becoming alcohol dependant and if the stress levels do not change neither can their behaviour”.
Small changes in attitudes towards alcohol in the workplace could go a long way, staff and managers need education on alcohol awareness in order for their policies to be truly meaningful. Policies need to be understood before they are signed otherwise there is no real meaning to what has been signed.
The next Waffle with Wave-length – Stress Less , A look at relieving stress in employment, will be held on 13th December 2012 at Meeting Point House, Southwater Square, Telford, TF3 4HS.