Provide a supportive and positive environment
You or your worker’s manager can provide a supportive and positive environment in the following ways.
- Discourage blame
Workers compensation is a ‘no-fault’ system in NSW. Actively exploring ways to prevent future injuries and focusing on helping the worker to recover will assist in building cohesive relationships.
- Keep in touch with your worker
Stay informed and inquire after your worker by regularly phoning or visiting. Find out the estimated recovery time and provide updates and news of the office or work site. Invite your worker to meetings, morning teas or social events. Reassure your worker that they are missed and the team is keen for their return.
- Ask appropriate co-workers to stay in touch
Encourage your worker’s colleagues to phone, email, visit or text. If they are reluctant because they feel they don’t know what to say to the worker, reassure them that positive and considerate contact helps the worker recover. A quick chat about some general news from the workplace or other topics of interest sends a positive message to the worker.
- Address and resolve any outstanding issues
A worker’s recovery can be influenced by other issues within the workplace (such as conflict with a co-worker) or at home (such as transport difficulties). These can be barriers to returning to or recovering at work. Information about cultural, psychological and social risk factors that may affect recovery and return to work outcomes are available on page 9 or go to: workcover.nsw.gov.au/factorweb
- Advise your worker of their obligations
Let your worker know early on what you will do to assist in their recovery at work. Consider discussing reasonable expectations around the level of their involvement and cooperation throughout the recover at work and injury management process. See Other people involved on page 8 for the worker’s obligations.