Employee mental health should be at the forefront of your business priorities, and encouraging a safe working space can really make a difference to your business’ success.
Perhaps you’re in Human Resources, in the leadership team for your business, or even the CEO.
Perhaps you’re hearing the words ‘workplace culture’ and employee mental health’ more and more around the office.
Or you may have noticed a recent dip in morale and performance amongst your colleagues.
Those employees turned up to work and completed their work. So they must’ve been happy at work, right?
But ask yourself this: is simply turning up to work and completing tasks really what it means to have a fulfilling and enjoyable job?
Low employee engagement resulting from this could, in turn, lead to underlying issues of dissatisfaction and poor employee mental wellbeing.
Often, it’s a little too late once an exit interview takes place in the last few days of an employee’s time. Maybe for the employee, just the thought of talking about their mental health was cause for more stress and anxiety.
Many employees wonder: how does one go about sharing something personal in a professional environment? But the real question to ask may be: why would we turn a blind eye to the emotions of the people that make our businesses possible?
Employees can provide invaluable feedback and insights into their experience with the business. If taken on-board, their feedback can prove to be pivotal in the business’s overall efforts to improve employee mental health.
Initiatives such as the World Federation for Mental Health’s Word Mental Health Day on 10 October provide a great opportunity for dialogue around social stigma. After all, it takes awareness and communication to build healthy teams.
In keeping with the theme of October 10th, here are 10 actions you can consider implementing to keep your staff feeling 10 out of 10:
1. Offer and encourage flexible working arrangements.
2. Identify and address potential workplace stressors.
3. Communicate regularly with your team members.
4. Be a role model for positive behaviour and discourage negative behaviour.
5. Encourage outdoor group activities and social functions.
6. Encourage mutual support and team cross-collaboration.
7. Keep a stocked kitchen.
8. Create an overall well being strategy and integrate it into business decisions, practices, and culture.
9. Encourage and enable professional development.
10. Talk openly about mental health and also encourage other team members to do the same.
Of course, this list isn’t exhaustive. There are countless other ways to encourage a positive workplace environment. In turn, this creates a healthy workforce where open and transparent discussions about employee mental health are welcomed.
Ultimately, the workplace shouldn’t be a space where mental health is taboo. After all, we spend most of our waking hours at work with fellow colleagues – we don’t call them ‘work spouses’ for nothing!