To better care for their employees, many organizations are adding wellness programs to their benefits packages. Although these usually cover fitness and healthy eating, mental health is another important part of the equation.
What Are the Advantages of Addressing Mental Health in the Workplace?
Decrease Your Costs
On the surface, mental health issues are less obvious than physical illnesses. However, their impact is real. Conditions such as anxiety, depression, ADHD, eating disorders and substance abuse lead to an increase in sick days, health care costs and disability claims. According to the World Health Organization, “the estimated cost to the global economy is $1 trillion per year in lost productivity.”
Benefit From a More Engaged Workforce
Employees who are suffering in silence may try to cover up and push through. Unfortunately, their struggles will negatively influence their decision making, their ability to concentrate and their relationships. This, in turn, can affect overall workflow, morale and ultimately profits.
Create a Better Company Culture
Supporting your team through good times and bad not only is the right thing to do, but also builds a positive reputation for your organization. In a 2016 analysis, Glassdoor found the top-rated places to work were people-focused. In other words, they helped employees to become their best.
How Can You Promote Better Mental Health at Your Company?
Encourage a Healthy Working Environment
A high-stress, thankless job requiring unreasonable hours will burn out the most dedicated team members. Pay attention to how the demands of your organization may upset the mental health of your employees. Encourage exercise, regular breaks and socialization, while discouraging infighting, layoff rumors and 24/7 connectivity. Viewing work in a healthy context can go a long way toward improving mental health.
Educate Your Employees
Unlike other diseases, mental illness carries a stigma. Many people are embarrassed or ashamed even though nearly one in five U.S. adults live with a mental illness. (National Institute of Mental Health, 2017) These conditions can be treated successfully through counseling, lifestyle changes and/or medication, but people must be willing to ask for help. Most health insurance companies offer support ranging from online resources to free screenings to in-house stress reduction classes. Make sure your team knows what is available. Encourage them to take advantage of these programs just as they would with any other wellness perk.
Support Those in Need
If an employee had a heart attack or a stroke, most companies wouldn’t hesitate to provide them with extra time off. Despite the fact mental health conditions can be just as devasting, many people don’t view them in the same way as a physical ailment. Change this standard at your organization by equally supporting all illnesses. Assist workers during recovery periods and set policies to ensure job security throughout any unexpected setback.
Are You Looking to Add Great Employees to Your Team?
FirstStaff partners with businesses across Arkansas to solve their hiring needs. Whether you are searching for a hard-to-fill position or for temporary staff, we can help you find the right people. Learn more about leveraging our expertise today!