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Grief in the Workplace

There are many faces of grief in the workplace. The caregiver, the grieving employee, the death of an employee and crisis reactions all impact the workplace. Balancing compassion and productivity can be difficult for employers. The hidden impact of grief and loss on the workplace may be seen through unexpected tardiness or absenteeism, decreased concentration, increased accidents, and decreased production. The bereavement center can assist employers in identification and assessment of organizational needs, as well as the development of a plan of action. Consultations are provided either via telephone or on site.

The Grief Index 2003 Survey reports that grief costs U.S. businesses over $74 billion a year.

  • Death of a Loved One – $37.6 billion
  • Divorce/Marital Woes – $11 billion
  • Family Crisis – $9 billion
  • Death of an Acquaintance – $7 billion
  • Money Trouble at Home – $4.6 billion
  • Pet Loss – $2.4 billion

Many healthcare agencies experience cumulative grief and in turn, compassion fatigue. The bereavement center offers specialized training, education and support initiatives to help these workplaces become more sensitive to grieving employees.

More than four million workers experience the death of a loved one each year. At any given time, approximately 25% of employees are grieving a loss.
American Hospice Foundation, 1999

The way you treat a person who is grieving is a message not only to that employee but to others. It can affect the morale of everyone. Treat them well in their time of need … and they’ll never forget it.
American Hospice Association

Click here to find our Grief Discussion Groups, a forum where you can share your stories, express your feelings and receive coping tips from others who are grieving and the professionals at the Elisabeth Severance Prentiss Bereavement Center.

Don't go through it alone

Resources

Care for the Caregiver

Caring for yourself is one of the most important—and one of the most often forgotten—things you can do as a caregiver.

Suggestions to Aid a Grieving Co-Worker

When a co-worker endures a loss, it is our natural desire to want to help them in some way, shape, or form.