WHS Manager AUZ/NZ and Asia Pacific Wellbeing Coordinator at Citigroup
Elevator pitch: Tell us about your role and the work your organisation does
In Australia, Citi is an Institutional Clients Group which provides comprehensive range of investment and banking services to corporates, governments, and institutional investors. Citi is in more than 100 countries around the world.
Citibank’s head office is in New York and has been in the Australian market for over 40 years, and in existence as a bank since 1814. There are significant operations in each of the world’s important financial and investment center’s including London, New York, Boston, Frankfurt, Hong Kong, Milan, San Francisco, Singapore, Sydney, and Tokyo.
Last June, Citi’s Australia’s Retail Bank was sold to the National Australia Bank.
What’s the current focus for you and your organisation in workplace health and wellbeing?
Psychological Safety is the focus; new legislation in Australia is driving this focus, as well as the inevitable workplace changes that have occurred because of COVID-19. For me, the Wellbeing component of my role is broadening to include Asia Pacific. This change has come about as result of the divestment of the retail arm of the bank to the National Australia Bank, leading to a broadening of some roles into Asia Pacific. I am really excited about the prospect of coordinating the Wellbeing programs in markets that are so different from Australian/NZ experience.
What aspect of workplace health and wellbeing does your organisation do well in?
I believe that identifying and assisting people early when they need assistance, for physical or psychological concerns is something that Citi does very well. The maturity of managers to recognise and support employee’s wellbeing when modifications are required is a strength at Citi.
What’s your biggest challenge working in workplace health and wellbeing?
I don’t think we really know yet what the wellbeing impact of the changes brought about by COVID-19 yet. For some people, more flexibility, working from home is an absolute positive. I believe that continuing to understand the individual needs of employees will continue to be very important. The transition back to the office, will be particularly challenging for some employees who have changed the structure of their working days over the last couple of years.
What do you feel are the key issues and considerations for people working in this sector?
Financial Services are generally high performance, high demand workplaces. The current global economic climate is challenging for all workplaces, financial institutions included. I think workplace demands and ensuring adequate resourcing is a key consideration.
What do you think the future of workplace health and wellbeing looks like?
I think the days of intense wellbeing events calendars and fruit bowls is gone, as too is the notion that an APP is a solution to workplace wellbeing. My personal view is that employees want flexibility, to be treated respectfully at work, to feel heard, to have positive workplace relationships, feel supported during those times of their lives when inevitable challenges present themselves, are adequately rewarded for their efforts and can have meaningful conversations with their managers regarding their career path.
Whilst people who work in roles like ours can assist to influence the workplace, the future of wellbeing is not the responsibility of the Wellbeing Coordinator, WHS Manager or HR personnel, it a broad cultural shift that requires a whole of business approach. I think COVID-19 has ensured that Workplace Wellbeing is seen a business imperative for workplaces.
What are your key practices and priorities for your own wellbeing at work? What about your team’s?
Trying to be as self-aware as possible in identifying when my own wellbeing is tipping and what I need to do bring the scales back in the right direction. I do a range of things; catching up with family and friends, exercise, long walks with my Cavoodle (pet therapy!), playing and listening to music, podcasts and reading, love live music/dancing too!
For people in my team, it is checking in with them, showing care and being flexible. My team at Citi is great, both on and offshore. I am very lucky to have great working relationships and we show genuine care to each other.
How does WayAhead Workplaces bring value to your organisation’s work, and to yourself as a professional?
I have been a WayAhead Workplaces Member for many years. I still believe that WayAhead is a very cost effective and extremely valuable group to belong to if you are working in Wellbeing, WHS or HR. It offers important networking opportunities as well as information, tools and assistance that is invaluable to guiding practice. I have limited time, so it is more convenient for me to attend shorter quarterly events then two-day conferences. The information provided is always researched and current.
Thank you WayAhead!