Supporting mental health in the workplace is so important in today’s society. There are many factors inside and outside of work that can put immense pressure on employees, and if not recognised quickly enough, this can result in productivity issues and days off sick.
Being a manager in today’s world not only involves project managing what tasks your team are doing and ensuring deadlines are being met; but also monitoring how each person is feeling, whether they are coping with their workload. Is there anything going on outside of work that may be affecting them? It is important that both the manager and the company understand how they can help. Building a healthy open relationship between line managers and team members can have a dramatic effect on employee perceptions of their workplace and how much they enjoy their job.
With the more recent growth in awareness around mental health at work, naturally, there has been an increase in the amount of research and statistics surrounding how this affects both employees and companies. Here are some that may help you realise how important it is to support mental health in the workplace and how doing this could, in fact, result in a happier workforce and the company actually saving money:
- A staggering 70 million workdays are lost each year due to mental health problems in the UK, costing employers approximately £2.4 billion per year. (Mental Health Foundation)
- A survey of 2,000 employees has revealed that 38% of British workers wouldn’t talk openly about a mental health problem for fear it would affect their job prospects or job security. (MHF)
- A poll of 1,000 managers found that 59% said their workplace could make improvements to current systems and attitudes to take the mental health of workers more seriously. (MHF)
How To Improve Mental Health In The Workplace
So having thought about adding mental health strategies into the workplace you now need to take action. So where do you start?
The best starting point is by enrolling your managerial staff on a Mental Health First Aid course. This practical, interactive 2-day course will give managers the knowledge, skills, and confidence to recognise and respond appropriately to the signs and symptoms of mental ill health. Participants will learn how to listen non-judgementally, reassure and respond to a colleague, even in a crisis. The course is delivered by a highly qualified and experienced MHFA trainer with clinical and/or lived experience of mental ill health. You can find out more about this course and exactly what it covers here: Mental Health First Aid Course
If you have other team members who have an interest or passion around mental health and would like to be the mental health champion for the business giving any employees who do not feel comfortable enough to speak to their line manager the opportunity to instead speak to this designated employee. Our Mental Health Champion course is a one-day awareness course that will give participants the knowledge and confidence to provide mental health first aid for the most common mental health issues. They will gain an understanding of how to help build a mentally healthy workplace, challenge stigma and support positive wellbeing, as well as learning how to implement a Mental Health First Aid action plan. You can find out more about this course and exactly what it covers here: Mental Health Champion Course
Once your staff are trained and confident you can then spread the word about how mental health is important and recognised within your company, and where employees can go to get support should they feel it would be beneficial.
If you have any questions about adding mental health training and support to your workplace, please do not hesitate to contact our knowledgeable and friendly staff on 020 8445 8998 where they will be happy to discuss this with you.