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Mental wellbeing


We care for your mental wellbeing

We care for our people. Wellbeing is high on the agenda and a key priority in our Let’s go for Zero strategy. Why is it a key priority and how do you take care of your own wellbeing and that of your colleagues’ in these challenging times? Carolina Venturelli (HR Director in South America), Scott Mitchell (Plant Manager at the AC site in Burlington, Canada) and Veerle Frederickx (company medical doctor in Belgium), share some of their valuable insights and tips. 

We care for you!

Veerle: “We are a caring company and we attach a great importance to everyone's wellbeing. Physical and mental wellbeing are related to each other. When you have a physical health problem, this increases your risk of developing mental health problems and when you are not feeling well, this will have negative impact on your physical health. Besides, if you feel good, you are also more active. And when you are more active, you will also less likely have health problems. Within Umicore we have many initiatives throughout the regions like the general health examination, prevention campaigns on stress & burn-out, career coaching, social and physical events, ... We also have an internal medical department where employees have 24/7 access to medical advice, I’m one of the doctors.” 

“To feel close also means to feel safe. It is important to make yourself available to talk with employees and listen how  they feel with workload and deadlines. It is key to help colleagues find the balance between their level of capabilities with expected results and celebrate their efforts and give them recognition. .. Mental wellbeing is about balance, about taking care of yourself and each other.”

Carolina Venturelli, HR Director in South America

Send your colleague a dancing penguin 

Scott: “As a leader,  you have to motivate colleagues and get them to speak up. Truly connecting by not only listening, but also watching for instance their body language and how talkative they are. If you know your colleagues you notice patterns and changes. If you believe a colleague has a concern, reach out and a small action can make a big impact. Knowing colleagues’ pets for instance is a good starting point for a conversation. Or do something out of the box, I reached out to colleagues by sending a dancing  penguin emoticon to t break the ice. It’s a simple gesture, but by doing so people feel that you are there for them and that they are safe.”

If you could share one golden tip, what would it be? 

Veerle: “It’s important to consciously reflect a few minutes a day upon yourself: how are you feeling? Because only by knowing how you are doing, you can take care of yourself. Find someone in your close environment where you feel safe with to share how you are feeling. Know what gives you energy. Be aware that we do care about your wellbeing!”

Carolina: “Be active, exercise. When you exercise, your body produces serotonin which makes you feel healthier. Learn to listen to what your body is telling you.” 

Scott: “Let your colleagues feel at ease and show them you care. No big actions needed, send a dancing penguin emoticon. You might be surprised what comes back!”

Your physical, emotional, social and occupational wellbeing 

At Umicore, we engage in creating a healthy workplace where employees take care of each other. We promote and safeguard physical, mental, social and occupational health in the workplace, adapted to individual and regional circumstances. Together, we care about making Umicore a great place to work for all employees.

Zero harm is one of the three pillars of our Let’s go for Zero strategy, and wellbeing is a key topic in this. 

Veerle Frederickx, company medical doctor in Belgium