Occupational health manager’s diary: Tracey Azzard

Don’t know if it’s the result of all the Well Being nonsense I have been involved with recently, but I seem to have found a dynamic new inner self. Not only have I now gone below a size 14, so that I am currently sporting the tiniest jeans I have owned since Wham! was in the charts, I have also landed myself a new job. And after just one interview, as well.

What’s more, instead of working for a leisure company, and being mentally tortured by cutting-edge HR thinkers like my dear colleague Martin Tallow (can’t wait to tell him I’m off), I’ll be working for a medical practice. I am going into a job where I carry out clear, well established OH functions like audiometry, vision screening, travel vaccinations and the like, unimpeded by Well Being Buddies, NinetoFive Nirvana initiatives and any other “happy work solutions for crazy humans” that MT might come up with after a night on the chamomile tea.

Here is he now. “Can I have a word?” I ask. “Sure thing,” says Martin, who has started using an American accent since we brought in the NinetoFive Nirvana team (HQ is in San Diego, though most of the consultants hail from Essex).

“I’m leaving at the end of the month,” I inform him, trying not to smirk or shout “Yay!” at the top of my voice. Martin looks horrified. “But – you can’t leave!” he cries. “How will you maintain your wellness without a Buddy to support you?” He sits down and stares at me as if I have just announced I don’t believe in cardiovascular workouts.

“It’s fine,” I say to him, with a reassuring smile. “Back to some basic OH stuff. In a medical centre. You know, assessing people’s fitness to work and all that.” Martin shakes his head. “That’s terrible,” he says. “After all the inspiration and vision you’ve been part of here.” I look up at my calendar on the wall, on which my departure date has been encircled in good old-fashioned red felt tip. “Don’t worry about me,” I say. “I’ll manage somehow.”

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