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Table 4 Outline of cognitive ergonomics and recovery support workshops

From: Effects of a cognitive ergonomics workplace intervention (CogErg) on cognitive strain and well-being: a cluster-randomized controlled trial. A study protocol

PhasesDescriptionExamples
Introduction of workshopPresentation of workshop goals and information on the topics according to group allocationTopics CE: 1. Disruptions, 2. Interruptions, and 3. Information overload.
Topics RS: 1. Stress management, 2. Recovery, and 3. Work-life balance
MCII: Optimal situation vs results of baseline measurementOptimal situation based on research evidence vs organization’s current situation according to questionnaire, interviews and observations.Same structure for both intervention arms.
Informed consentOral and written information on the study, signed informed consent. If all participants agree, the workshop discussion during the second part is recordedSame structure for both intervention arms.
Task assignment and groupwork (3–4 persons/group)Planning practices to improve current situation under intervention arm topics. The group chooses a spokesperson as well as a record-keeper, who keeps the schedule and saves the group’s answers on a structured intervention sheet.Same structure for both intervention arms.
WOOP method:
 Wishes (W) and Outcomes (O)
(10 min)
Wishes and optimal outcomes are sketched for the group. Group discussion: i) importance of issue in the work community ii) indication whether issue is in order or resolvable and iii) other comments and questionsCE: “There isn’t too much noise, and speech is muted: there are no unnecessary distracting ringtones or movement (W); we have agreed on ground rules and working methods that reduce noise and distractions (O).”
RS: “The strain factors are in balance with resources at work; the amount of strain at work is appropriate (W); We have agreed on ground rules and working methods that help us manage strain (O).”
 Obstacles (O)
(10 min)
Naming the concrete obstacles (e.g. situations) that prevent the achievement of outcomes and how to deal with them.CE: Discussion and identification of distractions that hinder work and flow of tasks, such as speech, noise, and people passing
RS: Discussion and identification of specific working conditions that increase strain, such as situations resulting in lunch breaks being skipped
 Plan (P) (50 min)Formulating ground rules (GR) and describing the working method by using IF-THEN rules, arguing why the issue is important (I) to the group, and discussing how the group can make the change (C) work together. Working with both ready-made examples and own rules describing the working methods.CE: “We’ll control our voices”. IF I work in a space where there are other people, THEN I will lower my voice and keep the noise level low. (GR)
“In many spaces noise is a major straining factor, every one of us can affect the noise level around us” (I).
“Person X will bring the issue up in a team meeting” (C).
RS: “Schedules are predictable”. IF unpredictable tasks arise often, THEN there is time reserved in the calendar for them. (GR)
“Scheduling time for unpredictable tasks reduces haste and time pressure” (I).
“Supervisor Y ensures that the matter moves forward” (C).
 Utilization and dissemination
(5–10 min)
Consideration of concrete implementation of behaviour change methods to ensure success. Structured evaluation i) of the usefulness of the workshop and ii) of the engagement in the behavioural change.Concrete methods for both intervention arms; for example, what things should be further discussed and with whom; what message needs to be passed on, how and to whom; what long-term measures should be undertaken
 ConclusionDiscussion and sending of files to research contact person.Same structure for both intervention arms.
  1. MCII Mental Contrasting Implementation Intentions, WOOP Elements of the MCII method, Wish Outcome, Obstacle, and Plan, GR Ground rule, I why the issue is important, C how the group can make the change, CE Cognitive Ergonomics group, RS Recovery Support group