One of the most important roles a business plays in an employee’s work life is creating a mentally healthy and safe workplace. Providing a healthy workplace drives productivity, staff retention, decreases workers’ compensation claims, reduced absenteeism, and a positive brand within the industry. People seek out employment workplaces with a great reputation in the working environment.
What are some of the strategies businesses can implement to create a mentally healthy workplace?
- Without a work/life balance productivity is likely to drop and burnout of staff is probable. Encourage employees to take their leave; don’t expect your staff to respond to emails after hours unless it’s an emergency, and inspire them to experience an enriched life outside of work hours.
- Offer your employees access to mental health tools such as an Employee Assistance Program where they have free access to support sessions; place positive mental health posters featuring contact details in the office, perhaps in the kitchen area. Create a landing page on your business’ intranet site with website links to visit. Appoint a mental health champion within the business.
- Discuss mental health in the workplace including how to identify the signs and symptoms of mental health issues such as stress, anxiety, depression, or other mental illnesses. Training can be conducted through an internal mental health champion or source a workforce health provider to present to the employees or train up the mental health champion.
- Create wellness-themed activities such as yoga, mediation, or stretch sessions at lunchtime, start a walking group, provide fruit in the communal areas or encourage the team to sit outside in the local park for lunch. Invite an employee to act as the wellness coordinator to set up a wellness program for the staff.
Providing support through in-house activities such as mental health training, wellness programs, healthy eating, introducing a mental health champion and the business is open in their communications on how to seek out help will create a mentally healthy workplace for all.
For information on mental health consulting, employee assistance program and training click here.