The Trento Castello IW Club has celebrated the Inner Wheel Day 2018 by promoting the 2017-18 IIW Theme “Leave a lasting Legacy” given to us by IIW President Dr. Kapila Gupta. The Trento Castello Club organized a conference on a very important and serious topic, whose human, social, and economic impact forces us to raise awareness on it.
The title of the conference was “Mobbing e burnout: quando il lavoro è un incubo”, which means Mobbing and burnout: when working becomes a nightmare. Three remarkable speakers delivered their speeches at the conference, which was chaired by the lawyer Eleonora Stenico, who is not only an expert in the field and a dear friend of the Club, but also the Consigliera di Parità (member of the province council in charge of equal opportunities). Ms Stenico is the spokeswoman of the local law on mobbing – the law was requested by Sara Ferrari, the Assessora alle Pari Opportunità in office (member of the local government in charge of equal opportunities), who sponsored the conference along with the Municipality of Trento.
Many distinguished guests took part in the conference – schoolmasters and doctors, as well as Antonella Chiusole, who is both the General Director of the Employment Agency and the Chairwoman of the Antimobbing Committee of the Autonomous Province of Trento. The unexpectedly very large audience and the more than a hundred teachers and doctors who had already confirmed their presence were a clear evidence of the interest in the topic and their admiration for the speakers.
The first speaker was Prof. Harald Ege, I-O psychologist. In the 90s he was the first psychologist in Italy to talk about mobbing at work. He identified it as “a form of psychological intimidation generated through continuous aggressive and oppressive behaviour by employees and employers at the workplace” – this behaviour is usually systematic and persistent (at least six months). Systematic and persistent – these are the keys in order for the behaviour to be defined as mobbing assault at workplace. Due to these assaults the victims start feeling extremely ill at ease – and this leads to negative effects on their mental and physical wellbeing. In his extremely inspiring, powerful talk, Prof. Ege skilfully outlined the main points of the issue to the large audience in the Grand Hotel Trento. He also listed the very criteria that need to be there so that the victims can defend themselves and/or talk to the judicial authority.
The second speaker was Prof. Ferdinando Pellegrino, psychiatrist and psychotherapist. He launched many clear messages aimed at encouraging us to make the most of ourselves as human resources in any situation. ‘We must look at ourselves in the mirror’ to measure our vitality quotient and to develop the self-confidence that we need to believe that ‘we can do it’. ‘Adapting to changes is not easy; in order to do so we must be self-aware and flexible, so that we preserve our identity without being overwhelmed’, he said. Prof. Pellegrino gave us many ideas that we can also find in his books – useful ideas on how to better use our emotional and rational resources when we want to make proper decisions throughout our lives. He also inspired us on ‘how to train your mind and emotions, that is doing the so-called emotional-cognitive fitness’.
Thanks to our partner Associazione Docenti Articolo 33, a teachers association recognised by the Italian Ministry of Education, University and Research, the conference was also promoted as further training for teachers and school staff. Discomfort among teachers and the emotions related to occupational stress were indeed the topics of the third speech, delivered by Prof. Gianluigi Dotti, member of the national board of directors of the Associazione Articolo 33. In his talk he clearly stated that stress and burnout are work-related conditions for teachers, and they have serious consequences. People who work in the school system, in the health sector, and workers in general who are constantly in contact with other people in the long term suffer from high levels of stress.
We all know that the pupils must be at the heart of the learning process, so we must be attentive to them, but we must not neglect teachers, because they take care of children and young people – they educate them and they raise them along with the families. That is why it is so important to think about teachers’ wellbeing and prevent stress-related disorders.
The speakers gave us much food for thought, and many ideas and words. A word stood out among the others: RESPECT – among people, between employers and employees, between teachers and learners, and so on. And once again we are faced with the notion of APPLIED ETHICS that everyone of us should have, regardless of their role, or age. Also being AWARE of our limits is critical… in our lives we start from self-awareness and then we develop self-esteem… and ultimately LEADERSHIP.
There is no better occasion to promote respect than the International Inner Wheel Day, when we commemorate our founder, Margarette Golding, who inspired us to serve our community and promote friendship. Inner Wheel Trento CASTELLO Carf, together with our friends from the association Mafalda Donne Trento APS, wanted to underline how important - among all the sectors - education is, as it educates and trains future generations, who are the life blood of our own survival – that is why we must make no mistake.
The video recording of the conference is on YouTube: https://youtu.be/eytTS5a730Y