Our mental health can have an impact on every aspect of our lives. And given how much of our waking life is spent working it’s no surprise that around 14% of people experience mental health problems in the workplace, with women in full-time employment twice as likely (19.8%) to experience common mental health conditions compared with men who work full-time (10.9%).
Employers must recognise that working conditions have a huge impact on the health and wellbeing of their employees. But it’s not just beneficial for the employees, protecting your team’s mental health can help your business. 89% of those suffering from mental health problems say that it impacts their work, thus affecting productivity.
Recent studies show that poor mental health costs UK employers up to £45 billion a year. To help support your employees and help your business, there are a number of ways you can help your teams. For starters CEOs, directors and managers can complete WHS awareness training to ensure they’re on top of Workplace Health and Safety.
Health care plans
Implementing a health care plan that provides mental health support is an easy and effective way for employees who are struggling to find help without worrying about additional costs.
Encourage time off
With so many people still working from home, the lines between home and work have become even more blurred. Whilst the French have gone to extreme measures to protect their personal time, making it illegal to contact employees with work during weekends, you don’t need to be quite so extreme.
But if you do notice employees sending emails outside usual work hours or not taking time off for months on end, you should encourage them to take time off.
As we move closer to a four-day working week, more and more studies are showing the benefits of flexible working arrangements. If your business model can cope with more flexible working, then encouraging staff to find a work pattern that works for them can help with any future mental health and work-related stress problems that may have previously occurred because of more traditional working times.
From ergonomic chairs to PPE like safety glasses and high-vis vests, every employer has a duty of care to ensure that staff has access to adequate equipment. Employees shouldn’t fear for their safety when working, nor should work impact their physical or emotional health.
Training managers in not only dealing with people who are suffering with their mental health but also recognising the signs of someone who is starting to suffer is essential in modern business management.
There are a number of courses that teach people to recognise the signs, as well as offer practical guidance for dealing with issues.