By Raman Mittal
Research conducted by Harvard Business Review suggested that 43 per cent of employees report high levels of daily stress and are on the verge of burnout. Poor mental health has a substantial influence on one’s capacity to work and perform physically. It lays the path for a decline in cognitive function and work-life balance. Contrary to that, when everything is going well, one can overcome any challenges one might face at work. Therefore, raising awareness of potential mental health concerns in the workplace is essential for promoting an inclusive environment.
Deloitte conducted research and found that 31 per cent of employees expect support from their employer regarding mental well-being. To assess a healthy culture and employees’ mental well-being, the first step is to raise awareness about workplace-related mental health concerns and how employers might restrict an employee’s mental growth and therefore his/her productivity. It will take time to resolve the shortcomings in mental health care and replenish the pipeline. However, in the meantime, as employers, we need to take an added responsibility to exemplify and respond to the needs of employees in order to alleviate their challenges in a manner that benefits both our and our employees’ mental growth. So, when businesses make focused efforts to support and promote employee mental health, the entire organization thrives.
For people with mental health conditions, healthy mindfulness practices at work can contribute to recovery and inclusion, and improve confidence and social functioning. Here are a few ways that, Raman Mittal, co-founder of Idanim suggested that will help in assessing the mental health of the employees:
● One-on-one discussions: One-on-one discussions help managers connect and build better relationships with their employees. These kinds of conversations make employees feel comfortable, especially talking about sensitive topics like mental health.
● Employee engagement survey: Surveys are a great way which helps employees to share their experiences. Surveys also build trust amongst their employees as they are confidential in nature. It is not just about circulating a survey employers also need to analyze responses to specific items to understand how different facets of the business are impacting mental health at work.
● Introducing employee wellness programs: Inculcating employee mental wellness programs in your organization can also help your employees in managing their stress at the workplace. Meditation and mindfulness have proven benefits in reducing stress, improving productivity, and boosting mental health.
● Create a sense of urgency while seeking assistance: We all know that help for emotional care is difficult to come by. Therefore, encourage the employees at the workplace to take the time necessary to discover and receive the help they require. Do your bit to remove the stigma associated with seeking or receiving mental health care by positively acknowledging it.
It is important for organizations to support employees who need assistance with mental health issues. Often people who experience mental health issues suffer in silence. However, if there is a supportive work culture and assurance from employers to give them the support they require, it can encourage them to talk about it and move forward in a better direction.
(Raman Mittal is the Co-founder & Meditation Expert, Idanim. Views expressed are personal)