At my age, I have seen a lot and in the past six months, I have had two friends die from drug overdoses. They were hugely successful in their careers, and no-one saw it coming. Perhaps they were accidental overdoes, or maybe they chose this path, but it begs the question - what responsibility do we have as friends, family and employers of people who are suffering from addiction, anxiety and depression?
Is your employee an addict or suffering from anxiety or depression?

I don't know all the answers, but one thing I do know is that I care. If any person, a friend or a stranger, needs someone to talk to, I am definitely there. I will drop whatever I am doing to be there. Sometimes it's easier to talk to a stranger, and other times, it needs to be someone that you trust.

Human Resources Manual

We are re-writing our human resources policy at the moment, and without disclosing too much, in our field, it appears that mental health and addiction are things that go with the industry. We have had multiple people with diagnosed bi-polar, anxiety, depression and multiple personality disorder. Of course they don't share this at the interview stage and nor should they have to, but when there is a problem, as an employer or a manager, you are merely second guessing the situation. 

When you have seen it enough times, you begin to see signs of behavioural changes, and put two and two together. 

Is it legal?

With alcohol, last year I remember having a meeting with a staff member in November, and they reeked of alcohol at 8.30am in the morning. I didn't say anything because as an employer, I was uncertain as to whether I could. Is that legal? I have no idea.

Next day, the same thing happened - and to be honest, I put it in the too hard basket and was a little more concerned about the legal remifications if I said anything, so I kept my mouth shut. Of course, they become unstuck by themselves and eventually the person had to be terminated for something that wasn't about alcohol.

Sunshine Coast Dream Catchers Retreat

Could we have done more? I certainly think in some cases employers can do more, and if the employee is worth it, the option of rehab is something that is worth a company like mine to pay for. Our new human resources manual will have options for our team that may be suffering from drug or alcohol addiction or just stress or depression - to do the Dream Catchers Retreat in the Sunshine Coast, a 28 day program, of which 5 days is a residential (on the Sunshine Coast) intensive program, with a at-home follow-up system. They follow guru Jost Sauer's holistic rehab program, and given that he has helped more than 100,000 people, his program is proven and tested.

What I like most about this program is the holistic approach. I know many people like the 1930's 12 step program and maybe branding has made it the number one choice, but it's 2017, and people need something different. The influencers are different to what they were when this program was designed.

Legally there is little you can say

As an employer, legally there is little you can say. All you can do is be there and give options to people who want to help themselves improve the life they are living. I'm not a fan of drug testing or alcohol testing, but I am definitely interested in ensuring that my employees health and wellbeing are front and centre when working at Marketing Eye.

The opportunity to transform your life and keep your career on-track and in perspective is important. No employer wants to lose a good employee - that's for sure!
Mellissah Smith is a serial entrepreneur and business leader with more than 20 years' experience in marketing.
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Mellissah Smith

Mellissah Smith is a marketing expert, author, writer, public speaker and technology innovator. Having worked with more than 300 companies across technology, medical device, professional services, manufacturing, logistics, finance and health industries, Mellissah has a well-established reputation as an experienced marketing professional with more than 20 years experience. As the founder and managing director of Marketing Eye, she has taken the company from startup to a multi-million dollar enterprise with offices in Australia and the US. Mellissah is also the Editor in Chief of Marketing Eye Magazine, a quarterly magazine that cover marketing, entrepreneurship, travel, health and wellbeing. #mellissah #marketingeye

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