Mental Health Awareness in the workplace

World Mental Health Day 2018

Equip your employees and managers to deal with stress, build personal resilience and support mental health

Remember mental problems can affect anyone, any day of the year, but 10th October is a great day to show your support for better mental health. #WMHD18 #WorldMentalHealthDay

The much-quoted Thriving at Work report was the result of an independent review requested in January 2017 by the Prime Minister, Theresa May.  The purpose was to look at how employers can better support the mental health of employees.  The report found several issues relating to the ability of UK employers to spot, support and assist with mental health.

According to the report, there are 300,000 people in the UK with a long-term mental health problem who lose their jobs each year.  The cost to employers is estimated to be between £33 billion and £42 billion each year.  Presenteeism, represents over half of this cost.  According to a 2017 Public Health England report, programmes designed to promote better mental health and wellbeing in the workplace can deliver a significant return on investment – £2.37 for every £1 invested for businesses employing 500 people.

Recent evidence, taken from the Deliotte report “Workplace mental health and wellingbeing ”, on the state of implementation of workplace mental wellbeing strategies shows that:

  • 72 per cent of workplaces have no mental health policy
  • 56 per cent of people would not employ an individual who had a history of depression, even if they were the most suitable candidate
  • 27 per cent of employees consider their organisations take a much more reactive than proactive approach to wellbeing
  • 92 per cent of people with mental health conditions believe that admitting to these in the workplace would damage their career.

The Deloitte report explores five inter-related themes that challenge successful implementation of workplace mental wellbeing programmes, including how the stigma around mental health underlies and worsens many of the stated challenges.

Challenge theme 1: Failure to see mental health and wellbeing as a priority

Challenge theme 2: Mental health policies are reactive, driven by staff events or experience, and not proactive and preventative

Challenge theme 3: Lack of insight around current performance (including recruitment, retention and presenteeism)

Challenge theme 4: Poor evidence base to measure return on investment of wellbeing strategies

Challenge theme 5: Lack of collective knowledge around best practice

Source: Deloitte research, analysis and interviews

For organisations, mental health training for staff and managers makes absolute sense – financially and ethically

Practical support

Mental health can be considered as a spectrum.  We fluctuate between thriving, struggling and being ill and possibly off work and practical support for employers and their employees should be designed with this in mind.

Research from Business in the Community shows that 76% of line managers believe employee wellbeing is their responsibility, but only 22% say they have received any kind of training on mental health at work.

When asked about what they would find most useful to support the wellbeing of employees, 49% said basic training in common mental health conditions would be a high priority.

Healthy Performance online assessments and training programmes

Recognising the need to address the various stages of the mental health continuum, Healthy Performance has for many years been supporting stress, resilience and mental health in the workplace. Pascal™ is our new product to support these services – a pioneering online audit that has been designed to help organisations gauge levels of pressure and stress like never before.  It is a diagnostic and support tool that sits nicely alongside our successful suite of mental health workshops that offer essential training for employees and managers.

For employees, our suite of workshops includes:

Stress – what is it?, spotting the early warning signs, strategies for managing it, self-care and other support options

Resilience – what is it?, understanding the impact of pressure, 10 ways to build personal resilience, support services

Mental Health – what is it?, recognising the signs, seeking help & support, developing good mental health, talking about mental help and offering help to others

Stress and Resilience – understanding stress & resilience, the impact of pressure on performance and wellbeing, common causes of stress, coping strategies, building personal resilience

And for managers, team leaders and supervisors, we have tailored these training workshops to focus on developing their appreciation of mental health, pressure, stress and resilience; helping them to understand the impact; how to spot the signs and to provide support to others.

Remember mental problems can affect anyone, any day of the year, but 10th October is a great day to show your support for better mental health. #WMHD18 #WorldMentalHealthDay