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At Howatt HR our mission is to promote mental health and prevent mental harm, our purpose is to foster growth as individuals, as a business and for our clients, and our values are Be Well, Be a Force for Good and Be a Teacher. Be a Student. Repeat.

As an organization we believe having a mission, purpose and defined values are not just things that are written on the wall or in a PowerPoint, but they are critical elements of a successful organization. Having a clear mission guides the direction of an organization and motivates all of us to contribute to the company’s success. Our values help us understand what we stand for and what we believe. Fundamentally, we believe living a purpose-based life enables us as an organization to fuel our efforts and combat burnout, while values guide the decisions, we make each day. To put it bluntly these factors are non-negotiable for anyone on our team no matter your position, or the challenge being faced.

As a part of our purpose, we want to stretch ourselves as an organization to take on new challenges and be vulnerable by sharing our journey, together, as a company. In these posts, I will be sharing my experience as a young leader inside of an incredible organization, as well as those of other team members, clients, and partners. We believe this can help normalize the success and failures organizations can face when trying to facilitate a psychologically healthy and safe culture. I will provide some real-world perspective when trying to address things like leadership alignment, implementing new structures and processes within your business, keeping up with client demands, while keeping our mission, purpose, and values at the center of decision making.

The experience that prompted this initiative was a team meeting we had last week. Every morning we do a team check-in, each day is focused on different topics, ranging from simple how was your weekend, to product information sessions, to team development.

Our Thursday meeting is called Teaching Thursdays. At these meetings all our team members can present something they are passionate about, some interesting research they came across — basically anything the presenter feels we could benefit from learning a little about. These talks are structured with a 15-20 min presentation and 10-15 min team discussion. Last Thursday our Director of Research Dr. Dayna Lee-Baggley guided us on a powerful conversation on the experience of the COVID-19 pandemic, how it has impacted us and what we can do to mitigate its impact. The key messages Dayna shared along with the group discussion, had me overflowing with pride as a leader as it was an excellent demonstration of how we strive to live our values every day, and exemplifies the importance of understanding that we filter the world through one lens, there is not a work Jesse and a home Jesse – there is just one Jesse. This message is even more relevant now than it has ever been as many of us work to maintain our work output, while home-schooling our kids or adjusting to new environments. As Dayna said in the short video it is the same storm, we may just be using different boats.