Workplace mental health can be hard to navigate as an employer. If you’re having a hard time engaging with and supporting employees who struggle with mental illnesses, you’re not alone.
Yet employers can and should develop a mental health strategy. This will help make sure you’re not contributing to the problem and that you’re reinforcing their efforts.
Check out these methods for setting up a strategy for your business.
Reduce Workplace Stress
One of the biggest contributors to mental health problems is stress. The CDC reports that 40% of workers say their jobs are very stressful.
Stress leads to all kinds of health troubles, from not sleeping to cardiac problems and stroke. Help your employees manage their stress taking away some of their workplace worries.
Dig deeper into each employee’s role and what the demands are. Each employee should know where they fit in the overall framework of the company and how they contribute.
They should also feel that their managers support them. Make sure you demonstrate your support as a manager, rather than just saying the words, “I support you.” If your employees know you’re all talk, they won’t ask you for help.
Be sure to help them negotiate any workplace relationship struggles, as well as exert control over their work.
Make It Easy
You have to find a way for employees to prioritize their mental health. If it’s too complicated, they won’t want to do it. Just as companies offer incentives for an annual physical, you can offer incentives for mental health check-ins and screenings.
Another way to make it easy is to bring mental health perks to the company. Hire a massage therapist to come for 15-minute sessions one day a month at no cost to employees. Offer counseling services or other mental health options at your workplace.
This company helps you make mental health easy with their streamlined app. Employees can see everything all in one place, from the social news feed to the employee benefits and perks or discounts.
Mental Health Strategy: Cultivate Understanding
If you don’t know very much about mental health struggles, then take some time to learn about them. Create a safe place for you and your fellow managers to ask questions and seek to figure out the struggles that you may not be aware of.
Many mental health issues like depression, anxiety, and other “invisible” disorders may not be obvious at first. People who suffer from these disorders aren’t just feeling sad or down, and they can’t just get over it. If you can understand these things, then you can help your employees. Encourage them that they aren’t a burden–they have a burden, and it’s different.
The more your managers learn about possible mental health issues, the easier they can be kind and supportive for employees going through it. Even just a few words can help or hurt more than they might ever know.
There’s more to your employees’ wellbeing than just their physical health. It’s tough to detect mental health issues on the outside, so your employees may be suffering more than you can tell.
Developing a good mental health strategy for your workplace can help them heal and return to work ready to do their best.
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