Catherine Calleja

Chair of the Health & Wellness Committee, The Malta Chamber

Catherine Calleja is Director and Group Company Secretary of the Atlas Group and Managing Director of Atlas Healthcare.

Developing a resilient workforce

Thursday 08th October 2020

In our first few months of work as the Health and Wellness Committee at The Malta Chamber, we have strived to review the key areas of concern in the areas of wellness, taking into consideration the particular stresses and strains arising out of the global pandemic.  We truly believe that this is a defining period for employers.  

Their attitude and beliefs as regards engagement and potential of their talent pool will truly come to the fore during this period.  We truly believe that the wellness and motivation of our workforce is the driving force of our businesses and the economy and ensuring employee health and wellbeing will help our business weather this storm. The new reality brought about by Covid-19 has brought about new challenges which we are now coming to terms with. 

The initial positive response to remote working is now being viewed more realistically with many understanding that there are many challenges to wellbeing also in this scenario, with loneliness, declining team spirit, ergonomic issues and childcare worries being cited among others – especially among younger and less experienced workers.  Burdens associated with this new reality are often falling unfairly on women.

The Health and Wellness Committee,  sponsored by Atlas Insurance PCC Ltd., is determined to raise awareness and competence among leaders of the benefits to business of enhancing  wellness at work which is the right to work in a manner that is healthy, motivating and edifying.

I have mentioned the importance of safeguarding our staff’s wellness with increased awareness and by providing support with Employment Support Programmes in two Webinars, one on Good HR Practices to Promote Mental Wellness held on 22 September 2020 and at another on ‘The Digital Future – Teleworking & Online Services’ held on 2 October 2020. The Health & Wellness Committee is now holding a Bench Marking Session on 29 October at 2pm on Creating a Culture of Wellbeing & Resilience during COVID, more information will be made available in the coming days on The Malta Chamber Calendar of Events.

The Health and Wellness Committee will be creating awareness and proposing policy measures to businesses and government in the following focus areas: Mental Health of Leaders and especially middle management and measure to improve resilience; challenges created by diversity;  Harassment & Bullying also with reference to gender issues, Environmental Issues connected to wellness with a particular focus on the work environment, Stress Management & Company Culture – how to promote wellness in practice; Understanding and detecting mental illness with activities being planned for October 2020, Education on minimum health & safety requirements and Post COVID-19 Challenges. The Committee will also carry out research and will disseminate information on the same focus areas as well as advising The Malta Chamber Board of Management and Council on these focus areas.

I believe that the jobs of the future will require more engagement, creativity and innovation and businesses will only thrive by harnessing the potential of a workforce which is motivated and where the culture is aligned with workers’ personal values, motivations and wellness needs.