Podcast: Supporting our staff with staff networks

Date published: 19 May 2022

Listen to the podcast on staff networks

Networks are all about people; they are about progressive change; they are all about supporting the employee journey and inspiring a feeling of belonging. There is a feeling of inclusion with a network, and making employees feel included at work can directly enhance performance and happiness in the workplace.

The networks ultimate purpose is not only to support our colleagues who share similar background, goals and challenges but also to act as advisory groups for any future plans/ projects. Networks has a very powerful meaning for any organisation which is focused on EDI and culture change.

We have a strong LGBT+ Network - We are very proud that we have successfully signed up to the Rainbow badges scheme and we are under assessment. We are hoping that by June, when the evaluation is completed, we will be able to receive the rainbow badges for our LGBT champions. The network is open to anyone, no matter of their sexuality.

We also have our network for our black, Asian, minority, ethnic colleagues. Our Trust has a very diverse nationality of staff and this employee network group is vital in helping employers act on equality issues in the workplace.

Another very dynamic and active network is the Wellbeing and Disability network, which was set up at the end of 2021 - its main purpose is to provide a safe environment for colleagues to identify challenges and offer suggestions. We look into different elements of the organisation to ensure our hospital is accessible not only for service users and visitors but also for our workforce.

Disability doesn’t come in a physical form only, so we are discussing ways to improve our services and ways of working for neurodiverse people. Consequently, the network acts as an advisory group for the hospital’s redevelopment as colleagues from the redevelopment team attend. A very important thing to mention is that the network is open to everyone who is interested in holistic wellbeing.

We have recently set up a new Women’s Empowerment Network as part of the commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion. The Network is being set up as a reminder that whilst substantial progress has been made to reduce the divide between genders, progress must still be made to ensure wider inclusion and equality between all types of people and gender, across the workplace.

Danny Karystinos, Diversity & Inclusion Lead, says “If you d like to get involved, please get in contact for an informal chat. Being a member of a network has a great impact not only on our wellbeing and motivation but also on the organisation’s culture.”

Listen to the podcast on staff networks