The Gratitude Effect: Transforming School and College Staff Wellbeing

The Gratitude Effect: Transforming School and College Staff Wellbeing

Brightcore Consultancy was founded by Oliver Welsby to provide dynamic and forward-thinking training and consultancy services. With a wealth of experience as both a DSL and a Mental Health Lead, Oliver has been leading transformative workshops and training for staff, students, and governors since 2012, and has worked with, and supported, over 800 schools, colleges, organisations, local authorities and businesses nationwide, to improve their provision. So, we were delighted to invite Oliver to write a guest blog about his consultancy's work in the education sector.

Gratitude, a simple yet powerful concept, plays a crucial role in fostering wellbeing among school and college staff. At Brightcore Consultancy, we recognise that working within education can be a challenging environment in which to work, so tiny moments of gratitude can go a long way.

Understanding Gratitude:

Gratitude extends beyond simply saying "thank you". It's a profound appreciation for the positive aspects and experiences in life, acknowledging the contributions of others, and recognising the interconnections between people.

The school / college environment, filled with interactions, teamwork, and shared goals, is an abundant ground for practicing gratitude. When staff express and receive gratitude, it fosters a supportive and encouraging workplace that is resilient in the face of challenges.

The Importance of Gratitude for Staff Wellbeing:

Enhanced Mental Health

Regular practice of gratitude contributes to improved mental health and emotional wellbeing among staff members. It helps in reducing stress and anxiety, adopting an optimistic outlook, and promoting a sense of contentment and satisfaction.

Increased Job Satisfaction

When educators appreciate each other's efforts and celebrate small wins, it leads to increased job satisfaction and motivation. Acknowledging the hard work and dedication of colleagues contributes to a positive working environment where individuals feel valued and inspired. Creating a culture where staff feel valued and their hard work is recognised, empowers them to be their best selves at work.

Strengthened Relationships

Gratitude acts as a social glue, strengthening relationships among colleagues. Positive acknowledgment and appreciation create an atmosphere of trust and cooperation, essential for a harmonious and productive workplace.

Implementing Gratitude in Schools and colleges

At Brightcore Consultancy, we encourage embedding gratitude into school/college culture. Here's a few ways you can incorporate gratitude:

Gratitude Journal: Encourage staff to maintain a gratitude journal where they can jot down things they are thankful for daily or weekly. This practice helps in shifting focus from challenges to positive experiences and appreciations.

Gratitude Meetings: Incorporate a segment in staff meetings where members can express appreciation for their colleagues. It could be acknowledging someone's hard work, a gesture of support, or celebrating professional achievements.

Gratitude Wall: Create a space where staff can post notes of thanks and appreciation for their colleagues. It serves as a visual reminder of the positive aspects and the collaborative spirit within the school or college. We also recommend using TAP's digital thanking walls so that staff can access positive messages at any time of the day!

Gratitude throughout the school/college community: Encourage pupils/students and parents/carers to leave gratitude notes for teachers and other colleagues. This will leave a huge impact on staff as they will feel their efforts are being recognised throughout the whole community.

Gratitude & Wellbeing Workshops: Consider organising workshops or training sessions on Gratitude & Wellbeing for staff. Brightcore Consultancy offers a range of staff wellbeing programmes from standalone workshops to long term wellbeing courses.

And of course, expressing gratitude is now really easy with the new TAP App -- a quick and effective way for you and members of the school community to thank your colleagues!

You can hear more from Oliver being interviewed on TAP Radio.