Wellbeing at Work

Helping build safe, inclusive and resilient workplaces

Event Details


Registration and coffee
Opening remarks from the Chair
Agnes Naera, Director - Student, Business & Community, Auckland University of Technology
How can equality, diversity & inclusion be accelerated at your workplace? Inclusion as the enabler of diversity
  • The need to create a workplace where people can bring their whole self to work 
  • True Diversity & Inclusion 
    • Accessibility 
    • Cultural diversity 
    • Equality 
    • Flexibility 
    • Beyond gender 
    • Age 
  • Developing leaders who value inclusion 
  • Understanding the value of inclusion and safety, and what the cost of not having a strategy can look like 
  • The importance of holding others to account for non-inclusive behaviours, environments, practices and structural impediments (such as policies and KPIs) 
Bev Cassidy-Mackenzie, Director, Diversity Consulting Limited
Empowering your employees to live their healthiest lives
  • Defining and implementing a successful, engaging and holistic wellbeing programme for our people 
  • Partnering with key stakeholders to enhance our wellbeing programme including the integration of technology
  • Measuring and communicating the success of our wellbeing programme
  • Evolving employee wellbeing aligned to business strategy and transformation
Charlotte Smith, Health, Safety & Wellbeing Partner, Southern Cross Health Society
Wellbeing at work – a journey to connect all the dots
  • Our philosophy around wellbeing
  • How this philosophy plays into workplace values and strategy, and adds value to our employer brand
  • How we identify negative and positive behaviours 
  • Wellbeing, the work we do and the impact we have
  • The quick wins and tenacious grinds
Kavita Khanna, Director, People and Capability, Tonkin and Taylor
Table discussion 1

What does wellbeing at work mean to you and your fellow delegates? 

Morning Break & Networking
Mental health & wellbeing in the workplace
  • What are your obligations to provide for employees’ mental wellness? 
  • Proactive approaches for preventing psychological harm – particulary in vulnerable industries & employment   
  • Giving psychological safety in the workplace equal importance to physical safety 
  • Supporting recovery at work 
  • Embedding psychological health & safety into your workplace culture, policies and practices 
Elizabeth Berryman, Founder & Director, Chnnl
Developing an award-winning wellbeing programme

Lion New Zealand reviews their path to the design, implementation and management of their award-winning initiatives:  

2017 Diversity Works NZ Award (Work-Life Balance category, LionFlex flexible working initiative)

2019 NZ Workplace Health & Safety Awards (Judges’ Commendation Award, Zero Suicide Workplace initiative). 

  • Flexible working: supporting people in their broader lives
  • Mental and emotional wellbeing: tackling the stigma of mental health at work
  • Practical tips to make these successful in your workplace
Robin Davies, People and Culture Director, Lion NZ
Implementing a mental health intervention framework

In this presentation, you will hear a summary of the journey NZDF has taken to improve the mental health and wellbeing of their people, from strategy to implementation. Their initiative was a targeted programme of work specifically focussed on improving the mental health and wellbeing, turning strategy into tangible outputs: new policies, practices, projects, and accessible tools and resources.

Colonel Clare Bennett, Chief Mental Health Officer, New Zealand Defence Force
Table discussion 2

What are your three top take-outs for creating a work place that supports mental health and those with mental illness? 

Lunch & Networking
Maximising the impact of Employee Assistance Programmes (EAP) - bringing real value to your people

What would it look like for employers to use EAP in the most impactful way possible and to underpin this investment with a strong culture of wellbeing practices? We'll explore:

  • How to increase utilisation of EAP through decreasing stigma
  • How strong leadership can increase the impact of EAP
  • How to support EAP with a human-centered approach
  • What else could we be doing to support our people alongside EAP?
Tamara Buckland, People Experience Advisor, Sharesies
Delivering a holistic wellbeing programme on a shoestring

You don’t need to invest huge amounts of money to influence a positive wellbeing culture – you just need a group of passionate champions, creativity and access to free resources! Hear practical tips on how Chorus have made wellbeing a top engagement driver through their holistic wellbeing programme that supports their people’s physical, mental, career and financial wellbeing.

  • Leveraging internal enthusiasm and capability to reduce the costs of external parties
  • Creating engaging and impactful wellbeing initiatives
  • Accessing free resources and speakers
  • Weaving wellbeing into your organisational culture
  • Effectively communicating your wellbeing messages  
Phillippa Powell, Organisational Development Advisor, Chorus
Afternoon Break & Networking
Long term absence & illness – obligations & rights

Correctly, fairly and legally managing long term illness or absence is one of the most fraught areas of employment law. Employers are often dealing with the old adage “how long is a piece of string” – eliciting hard-to-answer questions like “how long should I be prepared for this to go on?” and “how do I balance my obligation for a fair response with the need to keep business going?”. In this session, we look to the law for instruction around how an organisation establishes its red lines. 

Bridget Smith, Partner, SBM Legal
Return to work strategies to meet the demands of the world of work

If done well, a successful return-to-work programme can achieve high levels of employee satisfaction, creating strong and loyal feelings towards employer. The business benefits are tangible. Learn how to achieve a successful reintegration, even for the most difficult cases. 

  • Minimising reintegration risk 
  • Coaching to raise awareness and sensitivity 
  • Continuing support strategies 
Jenny Williams, Chief Client Officer, Humankind
Table Discussion 3

How does your organisation support long term absences and how could this be improved? 

Building employee resilience in the workplace & understanding stress
  • How resilience equips us to cope with the pressure and stresses of modern life
  • Learn practical, easily applied techniques to build resilience in yourself and others
Keith McGregor, Director, Personnel Psychology New Zealand
Closing remarks from the chair
Networking & Cocktail Function
Welcome back from the Chair
Agnes Naera, Director - Student, Business & Community, Auckland University of Technology
Inclusive Cultures
  • Pathways to diversity – let inclusion chart your course
  • Advocates for inclusion
  • Knocking through inherent and latent barriers, unexpected obstacles and speed bumps 
Rhonda Koroheke, HR Lead Partner for Diversity & Inclusion, Spark NZ
The rise and rise of bullying
  • Understanding bullying – definition, behaviours, prevalence, individual and organisational impacts
  • Responding to bullying – individual and organisational responses, WorkSafe NZ Guidelines.
  • Prevention – promoting healthy work, management competencies
Associate Professor Bevan Catley, Associate Head of the School of Management (Auckland), Massey University
Transforming 'nomalised bullying culture' to achieve positive working environments

Practical lessons from New Zealand’s leading workplace bullying advocate on how organisations can turn around their culture so that bullying is an unacceptable, and create a safe and inclusive working environment. 

Allan Halse, Director, CultureSafe NZ Ltd
Table Discussion 4

Transforming workplace cultures - how to do it? 

Morning Break & Networking
Implementing policies & culture to support a domestic violence aware, ready & free organisation

The introduction of the Domestic Violence Victims’ Protection Act 2018 means employers are required to provide 10 days unpaid leave for victims of domestic violence – greater light is now being shed on the impacts on workplaces, employees and productivity of domestic violence.  Hear from a leader who launched this leave in two companies and supported many more too, before it was the law!  Lessons and insights will include:

  • Creating workplaces where staff feel confident that the company will effectively support them
  • How to train your team to ensure people know how to respond safely
  • Creating proactive programmes 
    • What’s involved?

    • Balancing action, confidentiality and safety  

Anna Campbell, Independent Director and Consultant
DVFree Tick – what’s involved in achieving a tick?
  • Our experience in planning and achieving our Domestic Violence (DVFree) Tick
  • Promoting awareness that “yes, it can be happening to our people” 
Betsy Wang, People & Culture Advisor, West Auckland Trusts Service
Holly Carrington, DVFREE & Policy Advisor, Shine
LGBTIQ inclusivity in your organisation
  • Recognising the whole and authentic self – getting serious for true inclusivity 
  • How can businesses be more inclusive when it comes to transgender employees in the workplace
Mary Haddock-Staniland, Head of Membership Services, Diversity Works New Zealand
Lunch & Networking
Is Unconscious Bias harming your organisation, or leaving you exposed to challenge?

Unconscious bias can harm organisations and comes at a real cost to the bottom line. Equity, diversity and inclusion are not only important ethically, they are also vital legal requirements. Hiring managers and those involved in succession planning may be inadvertently overlooking the best candidates. Diverse viewpoints an unlock even greater organisation value and success. If organisations are only as strong as their people, then you need to ensure you manage the impact of unconscious bias on your workplace. 

  • What is unconscious bias? 
  • The neuroscience 
  • When does it happen? 
  • Does it mean I am racist/sexist etc? 
  • Where are the biases coming from? 
  • Strategies to mitigate against the bias 
  • Unconscious bias and decision making 
  • Raising awareness throughout your organisation and teams
Samantha Patel, Director, Responsive Consulting & Registered Psychologist MSc BSc PGDip CPsychol
Flexible Working – what does it cost to let my people work flexibly?

Perpetual Guardian set out to test assumptions about productivity through a company-wide trial, the results of which have made headlines around the world. Hear recommendations from the mastermind behind the Four-Day Week initiative on how flexibility at work can benefit your business.

Andrew Barnes, Founder, Perpetual Guardian
Fair & transparent practices for pay, performance management & promotions
  • Analysing pay and performance measurement, and why it can sometime not be fair or transparent 
  • Understanding why we might want this practice of unfairness to change 
  • Future pay and performance structure
Rob Campbell, Chairman, SKYCITY
Closing remarks from the Chair and end of the conference
The Excellerant Group
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