TAL, Australia’s leading life insurance specialist, is rolling out mental health coaching programs to its frontline claims consultants and people leaders as part of its commitment to improving the mental health of its customers and employees.
Led by TAL’s Head of Mental Health, Glenn Baird, the two coaching programs are based on best practice approaches outlined by TAL’s community partner, SuperFriend, a national mental health foundation focused on creating positive, healthy and safe working environments where employees can be well and thrive.
The coaching program for claims consultants focuses on strengths-based, outcome-focused techniques to understand the person on claim’s goals and shape the claims management process with these in mind.
Loraine van Eeden, TAL General Manager, Claims, said, “The training for our claims consultants uses a framework that highlights the need for empathy and understanding, as well language that focuses on the strengths and efforts of the person on claim as they navigate their way back to wellness. The program is being delivered to all claims teams across TAL, with ongoing coaching to refine the skills.”
The program for people leaders equips TAL managers with the right skills and tools to support their teams and foster an environment where they feel comfortable discussing mental health. TAL has made this training mandatory for all people leaders to complete over the next six months.
Commenting on the new programs, Mr Baird said, “These coaching programs are key initiatives in TAL’s mission to enhance our mental health capability, drawing on professionals and partners to empower TAL customers to live their best life through good health. Equally, as an employer we are committed to encouraging positive mental health and wellness in our people so that everyone at TAL can be well.
“The training for our people leaders was developed in partnership with SuperFriend. We understand that it’s not always easy to have sensitive conversations around mental health in the workplace and this practical program will help our people identify when support is needed, how and when to have discussions with their teams, and give them resources to support them in their roles. We are proud to be leading the industry in making mental health and wellbeing training mandatory for all people leaders across TAL.
“By partnering with SuperFriend, we are ensuring we employ best, evidence-based practice in managing the wellbeing of our people; as well as responding to mental health claims and interactions with our customers to give them the very best support we can,” he said.
Margo Lydon, CEO of SuperFriend, said, “Through regular mental health and wellbeing training of all people leaders, organisations can make a real difference to their people, customers and the broader community. SuperFriend is proud to partner with TAL to help achieve this.
“Taking a whole of business approach to building the skills of people leaders in mental health is to be commended. Through our partnership with TAL, we are able to deliver this best practice mental health and wellbeing training to help TAL and their staff provide better care to their customers,” she said.
These internal programs complement TAL’s external partnerships with the Black Dog Institute, the University of Sydney and Professor Neil Greenberg. Through the Black Dog Institute, TAL provides customers with access to evidence-based mental health resources, while the University of Sydney and TAL are working to explore the alternative risk predictors of mental health disorders. The partnership with Professor Neil Greenberg fosters best practice management of traumatic stress among claims case managers.