By Amanda Mataija

If a member of your staff broke their leg or had an operation, it’s highly likely you would have a health insurance system in place that can offer them adequate support so they can come back healthy to work.

What does that mean when we talk about mental illness? Would you know how to recognize and act upon it? Would you know how to approach an individual who is suffering from it and offer them adequate help and support?

Briefing your stuff and encouraging them about the importance of mental health support at your workplace can bring you a lot of benefits.

Let’s take time and dig into few of them:

1. Boost productivity

Dealing with anxiety and depression or any other mental health problem may for sure affect workflow and productivity of your employees. It is important as a leader to recognize the current stage of your employee so you can together identify levels of stress and channel them for tasks they can for a time being handled. If that is not taken into account, you might seen your employee unproductive, slow, often absent or in some cases angry. Take your time to talk to them and recognize it.

2. Retain your staff

We need to deal with the fact that a big resignation is happening at the moment. After COVID-19, our workplaces have changed and so has our approach towards the current working culture. Also, during this time the percentage of people who suffer from mental health illness has significantly grown and also pushed people’s perception on their current jobs. Long working hours, endless meetings and office culture that doesn’t allow individuals a certain amount of freedom has for sure put us to think: is this something that we really want?

Be an employer who offers not just pizza, yoga membership and unlimited tab beers. Offer them a benefit of actually speaking with a professional about things that bother them, or even more serious, mental health problem(s) they are battling with. Give them a mental health day/family day or just a day off for themselves. Remember, we have gone through severe changes for the last 2 years and it is impossible that it doesn’t take a toll on people. Be an employer who recognises that, acts and in the end keeps their people in the healthy workplace.

3. Reduce sick leaves and don’t lose money

Employees absent for psychological problems accounted for 16.8% of all incidences and 31.5% of all refunded sick days. The average one-year incidence was 2.47%, and was significantly higher for women (3.53%) than for men (1.66%).

Going further, a recent WHO-led study estimates that depression and anxiety disorders cost the global economy US$ 1 trillion each year in lost productivity.
As we can see sick leave for sure costs companies a lot of money, and with prevalence in mental health, considering current trends, may even cost more.

Try to think strategically and provide your stuff with mental health prevention programs to reduce the sick leave trend. With more than a half absent employees due to mental health problems, it is clear that the situation is becoming alarming and that companies are losing millions. If you want to avoid that, work with your staff on early recognition, prevention and the need of mental health programs.

4. Attract new talent and ensure ethical workspace

Involving mental health support programs can for sure help your perception of being an ethical and considerate employer. With a good image on the employment market, you will struggle less with finding and retaining as well new talent on board!

Thinking about introducing mental health programs and benefits for your employees?

Look no further and contact us, we would be happy to jump on a call with you!