• employee-morale-counseling

    Happiness depends more on the inward disposition of mind than on outward circumstances.

    - Benjamin Franklin

  • Assisting a Federal Agency Maintain Morale While Downsizing Its Professional Staff

    "In these stories, the identities and locations have been changed to ensure client confidentiality.”

    A Federal Agency contacted us because of a need for management consulting related to a forced downsizing of its professional staff, due to contractions in the industry that the Agency supported. Because of changes in federal policy, the Agency’s power and prestige had rapidly fallen, which resulted in a decline in morale for line professionals and managers. Depression was on the rise among the employees, as were anger outbursts and increased incidence of alcohol abuse and divorce. Complicating the situation was the fact that the employees were highly educated in a relatively narrow professional field, which made outplacement activities more challenging. When we arrived, one had the feeling that the personnel, a very talented and bright group of individuals, felt that they were on a sinking ship with no lifeboats.

    Initial meetings were held with senior management and HR to analyze the background of the situation, and develop together a strategic and tactical plan. The plan was then implemented which included:

    1. One-on-one consultation with managers who would discuss individual employee problems, and receive advice on how to address them
    2. Group consultation with managers  led by the psychiatrist facilitator, to share challenging situations and obtain support and guidance
    3. Psychiatrist-led presentations by the psychiatrist to the entire professional staff, on a voluntary basis, to educate them about the signs and symptoms of depression, anxiety disorders, and substance abuse, including a review of treatment options, and injection of hope and optimism

    Over time the organization became more self-sufficient in its ability to manage the crisis, as it began outplacing employees to new positions and reported these successful transitions to remaining employees.

    Interestingly, as is the case with many “cyclical” problems in industry, federal policy changed once again and former employees began to be hired back, and current employees began to feel their old optimism return.
     

    Our offices are conveniently accessible from the following communities:

    Maryland (MD):
    Bethesda 20814 - Bethesda 20816 - Bethesda 20817 - Chevy Chase 20815 - Colesville 20904 - Cabin John 20815 - Glen Echo 20812 - Gaithersburg 20855 - Gaithersburg 20877- Gaithersburg 20878 - Gaithersburg 20879 - Garrett Park 20896 - Kensington 20895 - Montgomery Village 20886 - Olney 20830 - Olney 20832 - Potomac 20854 - Potomac 20859 - Rockville 20850 - Rockville 20852 - Rockville 20853 - Silver Spring 20903 - Silver Spring 20905 - Silver Spring 20906 - Silver Spring 20910 - Takoma Park 20912 - Wheaton 20902

    Washington DC:
    Crestwood 20011- North Capitol Hill 20002 - Cathedral Heights 20016 - American University Park 20016 - Columbia Heights 20010 - Mount Pleasant 20010 - Downtown 20036 - Dupont Circle 20009 - Logan Circle 20005- Adams Morgan 20009 - Chevy Chase 20015 - Georgetown 20007 - Cleveland Park 20008 - Foggy Bottom 20037 - Rock Creek Park - Woodley Park 20008 - Tenleytown 20016

    Northern Virginia:
    McLean 22101- McLean 22102 - McLean 22106 - Great Falls 22066 - Arlington 22201 - Arlington 22202 - Arlington 22203 - Arlington 22205 - Falls Church 22041 - Vienna 22181 - Alexandria 22314