Supporting employees to be their true selves at Toyota, by Mel Costelloe, HR Coordinator, L&D & Onboarding at Toyota GB Plc

Wellbeing is at the top of our agenda at TGB, especially with the challenging circumstances currently being experienced across the world.

We want our staff to feel the best they can & supported to be their true selves whilst at work, which is why we have recently launched Wellbeing Passports.

Wellbeing Passports act as a tool to encourage people to open up about their wellbeing, particularly in a remote environment where signs someone may be struggling aren’t as obvious. The Passports are an editable document for individuals to record the aspects that they wish to share about their wellbeing or working style. There are headings & examples within the template to help individuals think about what to include.

For an individual to reach their full potential at work, they may need some additional support or changes made, which is why the Wellbeing Passports have a section titled ‘ways you can support me at work’. This is for the individual to share ways they think their wellbeing can be improved and therefore prompts their manager to think about ways to accommodate any requests or suggestions they may have. So far our Specialist, Customer & Innovation Carrie Hammond has used the Wellbeing Passport to document & understand her wellbeing, she says “when I completed the passport, it enabled me to focus on how I was really feeling about both work and life. Especially starting a new role virtually! Once I completed it, I felt a bit of a weight had been lifted off my shoulders as is made me acknowledge that the tension I had been feeling was perfectly normal and acceptable with what was current in my life. To be able to write down my feelings in that way really helped. No judgements, no pressure but the opportunity to sit back and dig deep about how I was really feeling.”

We decided to create and share Wellbeing Passports, following the launch of Mindful Manager & Talking Wellbeing workshops last year, which provided tips and tools about how to have a conversation about wellbeing. The Passports further build on this conversation, allowing it to be documented and individualised to support our staff on their journey to maintaining or improving their wellbeing. Rachel Grace, HR Business Partner has already seen the benefit of using them. “The Wellbeing Passport has been really helpful to me; it’s given me a way to start a conversation about a potentially tricky and complex subject, and means I know that my manager and I now share an understanding about how we can best work together. I love the fact that it can be as simple or as in depth as I need it to be, and I know that my manager can ask more personalised and insightful questions about me rather than the general “how are you, how can I help” questions.”

To ensure our managers felt supported in their role, we provided a ‘managers guide to Wellbeing Passports & enabling a healthy conversation’, to help them shape honest and most importantly fuss-free conversations within their teams. The guide also gives useful advice about how to look out for signs of someone struggling whilst working remotely and who to contact for additional support. For staff, we provided a detailed FAQ document to help position the Wellbeing Passports in the best way and to explain further what it is, what it can be used for and what to do next.

We launched the Wellbeing Passports in November and hope to see a real difference in the way our people communicate about their wellbeing and feel supported by their manager, as well as TGB as a business. We are also working on many more exciting wellbeing initiatives for the new year to further support our people whilst at work on their journey towards a goal of optimum wellbeing.

Article written by Mel Costelloe, HR Coordinator, L&D & Onboarding at Toyota GB Plc

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