In each edition of Pulse, we publish a short interview with an IOGP colleague or committee member. This month’s interview is with the Chair of the joint IOGP-IPIECA Health Committee, Hans Berg, Shell.
Has Covid-19 accelerated the development of the Well-Being Framework?
The pandemic has emphasised the need for the Framework and there’s no question that it has driven the Health Committee to complete the document as quickly as possible. We will soon have a definitive approach to well-being at a time when our industry needs it most, and when its decision makers have a clear understanding of the importance of well-being.
Looking ahead, do you think there will be any positive legacy to come out of the industry’s experience of COVID-19?
Once the immediate emergency is behind us and the new vaccines have done their work, I hope that one legacy of the virus will be an enhanced focus on well-being in our industry and throughout society. That is what the UN is seeking and IOGP supports that goal.
If we can achieve widespread well-being, then our recent difficulties will have resulted in some positive legacy. And since well-being includes social health, we hope that we can also broaden the human rights principles to include worker welfare and stop competing at the expense of worker welfare and well-being.
What is your personal practical advice for coping with mental health challenges resulting from the pandemic?
Challenges vary and so do the steps that need to be taken. Most important is to acknowledge that the current situation creates additional burdens and that these challenges need to be addressed. But I have also learned not to worry about things I cannot control.
Some things that work for me, my family, and colleagues: go for a walk every day; block family time in your calendar; limit meetings to 20 or 45 minutes; give yourself back some extra minutes between meetings; keep a routine; break large tasks into smaller chunks.
During this crisis I focus even more on just the day itself and every day I deliberately take a moment to reflect on something that I am grateful for.