Jim Oher - Rethinking EAPs and why we resist them.

PCC Local Time

Jul 6 2023 • 46 mins

For a long time, I have wondered why EAPs or employee assistance programs are so under utilized in organizations.

Today I talk with Jim Oher who has worked as a corporate director, executive consultant, psychoanalyst and group educator. He is also a trained mediator and resiliency hardiness specialist. He is co-author and editor of two books: The Employee Assistance Handbook andThe Employee Assistance Treatment Planner.

If you wonder why we are not using EAPs more to address mental health issues in the workplace, particularly given they are free of cost, this conversation may help you re-think, like it did me, how we could use EAPs in our workplaces to support employees who are struggling to stay plugged in.

As always, I am interested to hear from you. Let me know if you have found ways to make your EAP program more accessible and relevant to employees.

Sign up for the PCC Local Time Newsletter HERE to get more resources like this every Friday in your inbox.


Jim Oher Website

LinkedIn Profile

The Employee Assistance Treatment Planner


[2:12] Why are mental health issues on the rise?

[8:20] Glad to be Unhappy, sung by Frank Sinatra

[9:11] How might EAP programs be utilized effectively in an organization to help address mental health?

[10:11] Behavioral health field and AI

[11:48] Employee who counseled for substance abuse.

[12:48] Parameters of confidentiality

[15:37] What about softer issues where an employee just needs support?

[17:49] Counseling versus EAP

[20:43] Do HR Managers trust EAPs?

[22:56] EAPs are full of complexities and paradoxes

[25:08] EAP protocol and ethical guidelines

SHRM resources

[26:22] The two paths and what they look like

[29:56] Managers are still not comfortable with the role of coach

[31:26] More on impact of COVID

[37:49] Why don’t leaders engage EAP for coaching?