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Why workplace conversations are more important than ever 

Like many other people, I have felt very troubled recently by the terrorist attacks in London and Manchester and of course the Grenfell Tower tragedy. The victims – and their families – of all of these terrible events of course need a different scale of time and space in which to grieve. For the rest of us, though, there is also a need somehow to find a way to work through our collective shock and sorrow at what has happened.

My Dad passed away the day after the 9/11 attacks, so of course I think of him instinctively whenever terrible events disturb us all. I learnt from him how important it is, in this mad and pressurised world of work, to take time to rest the mind and to allow ourselves the time to slip our brains into a neutral gear in order to stop and reflect.

It is this lesson, particularly in difficult times such as these, that we try our best to pass on through all aspects of the work we do with clients. Even those not directly involved in terrible events still feel deep emotion at what they hear and see. And we especially need to listen and talk to each other – more than ever – about how we feel.

Approached in this way, the workplace can be an essential forum for the recovery of our collective self-confidence. It should never be a place to deny or suppress our emotions – heartfelt discussions about shocking events can do only good things. They help us understand one another better and, ultimately, play an important role in accelerating our recovery from horror to renewed hope.

Caroline Sheridan, Chair, Workplace and Employment CMC group and Founder of Sheridan Resolutions

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