On the agenda workshop series

On the agenda is a series of free workshop materials and facilitator tools to address psychosocial factors. Create an action plan with your team to improve psychological health and safety.

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Resources for team building – On the agenda workshop series

We put together the On the agenda workshop series to help you develop evidence-based psychological health and safety policies and strategies with your team. This series will help you consider psychosocial factors and existing approaches to improvement and employee input. With this information, your organization will be able to make thoughtful and effective policy and process changes.

There is a workshop for each of the psychosocial factors and each workshop is broken into 2 parts, Creating awareness and Creating change. In Creating awareness, you will engage your team in reviewing how your workplace performs in the given psychosocial factor and collaboratively drafting low-cost or no-cost solutions for improvement. In Creating change, you will walk decision makers through reviewing the solutions proposed in Creating awareness and writing or updating organizational policies to reflect the most effective employee-drafted solutions.

The workshops for each factor follow the same outline for ease of facilitation. Creating change is optional, however it must follow a Creating awareness session.

On the agenda workshops by factor

Below you’ll find links to the sets of resources (facilitator guide, presentation slides and participant handout) for each of the psychosocial factors listed in the National Standard of Canada on Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace and Guarding Minds at Work. A brief description of each factor can help you choose the team discussion that’s most relevant for your workplace.


In a work environment with positive balance, employees are supported to manage the demands of work, family and personal life.

Civility and respect

In a work environment with civility and respect, all stakeholders are considerate and fair in their interactions with each other.

Clear leadership and expectations

In a work environment with clear leadership and expectations, employees know what they need to do, have confidence in their leaders and understand impending changes.


In a work environment with positive engagement, employees are motivated to do their job well and feel connected to their work, co-workers, and organization.

Growth and development

In a work environment with positive growth and development, employees receive ongoing encouragement and support to enhance interpersonal, emotional and job-related skills.

Involvement and influence

In a work environment with positive involvement and influence, employees are included in discussions and have input into decisions that impact their respective jobs.

Organizational culture

In a work environment with positive organizational culture, there are shared values of trust, honesty, fairness and accountability.

Protection of physical safety

In a work environment with positive protection of physical safety, management takes appropriate action to protect all employees against injury and illness and ensures they have what they need to do their jobs safely.

Psychological and social support

In a work environment with positive psychological and social support, all employees feel a sense of belonging and contribution.

Psychological competencies and demands

In a work environment where psychological competencies and demands are not a health risk, employees are continually supported to meet the psychological demands of their position.

Psychological protection

In a work environment with adequate psychological protection, employees are free from bullying, harassment, stigma and discrimination.

Recognition and reward

In a work environment with positive recognition and reward, there is appropriate acknowledgement and appreciation of employees’ efforts in a fair and timely manner.

Workload management

In a work environment where there is positive workload management, employees feel supported to complete their assigned tasks and responsibilities successfully.Other chronic stressors as identified by employees.

Other chronic stressors as identified by employees 

The National Standard of Canada for Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace lists “other chronic stressors as identified by employees” as one of the psychosocial factors that employers need to assess and address. The best way to find out what these chronic stressors are is to directly ask your employees, as every work situation is unique. This can be as simple as sending out an email or survey with the following questions with room for employees to fill in whatever response makes sense to them:

  • What are the stressors at work that you are experiencing? Please include both significant stressors and more minor, but chronic stressors.
  • What changes could we make that would have a positive or protective effect on your level of workplace stress?

You can also read more about Sector specific stressors for psychological health and safety which includes potential approaches for first responders, human services professionals, call centre workers, educators, dangerous industry workers, high-tech workers, shift workers and remote workers.

Creating awareness workshop outline

These presentation slides, facilitator guides and participant guides are for trainers, team leaders, managers or others. Use them to pave the way for discussions and action aimed at developing a psychologically healthy and safe workplace.

Each presentation is related to one of the factors described in Guarding Minds at Work, which are known to impact psychological health and safety in the workplace. These factors have also been adapted for the National Standard of Canada for Psychological Health and Safety. Discuss these issues with your team and develop plans of action to contribute to improved psychological health and safety.

  1. Choose one of the factors. Then, use the Creating awareness facilitator guide, presentation slides, and participant handout to help facilitate the discussion. These factors have been identified through a large body of research as the main areas of concern related to psychological health and safety in the workplace. The Creating awareness workshop engages your employees in recommending potential strategies for improvement.
    • The facilitator guide for each factor includes slide-by-slide suggested wording.
    • The presentation slides and participant handout helps support productive and positive dialogue.
  2. Review the entire facilitator guide before you begin. You’ll get facilitation tips to help you engage employees in developing strategies to improve psychological health and safety for your team. And, you can customize the language for your audience.
  3. Book a minimum of one hour with your entire team to go through the presentation together and gather employee feedback. There’s sample invitation wording in the facilitator guide.
  4. Facilitate the meeting. The facilitator guide has information about preparation, materials you might need and alternative approaches to facilitating in specific situations. Facilitation tips for leaders is a separate resource with suggestions for dealing with challenges and engaging team members.
  5. Create a report from the feedback gathered in the Creating awareness workshop. Include the comments and ideas employees provided. Have the senior leadership identify the ideas they approve for implementation.
  6. For simple ideas, begin implementation along with measurements to evaluate the impact.
  7. For more complex ideas, develop a detailed implementation plan and timeline. You can use the Creating change workshop after the senior leadership review and approve the results of the Creating awareness workshop. Invite decision makers and those who will be responsible to execute the plan to participate in this session.
  8. Implement the plan.
  9. Analyze your results. Some measures might include:
    • Achievements
    • Challenges
    • Quality of work
    • Productivity
    • Employee satisfaction
    • Customer or client satisfaction
    • Input
    • Feedback and engagement
    • Accountability measures
    • Potential for long-term outcomes
  10. Bring your team together to discuss the results, make refinements and celebrate accomplishments.
  11. Repeat! Choose the next factor from the list below to work on and make On the agenda part of your team's continuous improvement process.

Note: If you’re using On the agenda in conjunction with Guarding Minds at Work, have the discussions after receiving the Guarding Minds at Work survey results or organizational review. These are good opportunities to engage staff in developing solutions to identified concerns.

Creating change workshop outline

  1. Before you begin, review the Facilitating this topic section in the facilitator guide for suggestions on how to prepare for the workshop.
  2. Review the entire facilitator guide before you begin. You’ll get tips to help you lead decision-makers through developing policies and processes to improve psychological health and safety in your organization. You can customize the approach for your audience.
  3. Book a minimum of 2.5 hours with your decision-makers to go through the presentation and facilitate the Creating change process. The facilitator guide will explain how to choose who should be present in the meeting. Each facilitator guide also includes sample invitation wording.
  4. Agree on how you’ll engage in a psychologically safe discussion.
  5. Review the psychosocial definitions and statements from Guarding Minds at Work.
  6. Review the input from employees who participated in the relevant Creating awareness workshops and the list of suggested evidence-based actions
  7. Share the process to establish the following criteria in your policies and processes:
    • Appropriateness
    • Acceptability
    • Accessibility
    • Efficiency 
    • Effectiveness
    • Safety
  8. Apply the Creating change process to the ideas you generated through using the worksheets provided.
  9. Vote to prioritize the various ideas generated.
  10. Refine the ideas. 
  11. Implement the ideas by integrating them with existing policies or processes.

You’ll find a complete set of resources for each psychosocial factor. Once you’ve completed one, you may find your policy or process changes have a positive impact on more than one psychosocial factor. At any time, you can choose another factor to focus on using a similar process. We also suggest that you revisit each of the factors every few years to ensure continued psychological health and safety in your policies and processes.

Contributors include.articlesAGS Rehab Solutions Inc.Dan BilskerDavid K. MacDonaldDr. Heather StuartDr. Joti SamraDr. Martin ShainJordan FriesenLinda BrogdenMartine OliveiraMary Ann BayntonMerv GilbertNathan KolarPhilip PerczakSarah JennerSusan JakobsonWorkplace Strategies team 2007-2021Workplace Strategies team 2022 to present

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