How to design a workplace that supports mental wellness
Mental wellness has climbed to the top of many company agendas, and rightly so! At least one in six employees experience common mental health problems, including anxiety and depression.
Poor mental health not only affects individuals working within the company but also impacts the productivity of the entire company. When left untreated, it may lead to lower performance, higher absenteeism and increased turnover.
It’s not always easy to tackle mental health – especially in the workplace. But we can start by creating environments that support our people’s well-being.
Here are 4 ways to get started:
Focus on connection first
Promoting well-being in the workplace starts with building trusting relationships.
If you aren’t fostering connections with your people first, they won’t feel able to approach you for personal issues.
Create a safe space for your people by being genuinely caring and supportive. This way, they’ll feel a little less anxious and will more likely share bottled-up emotions and concerns.
Reframe mental health issues
Let your team members know that it’s okay not to be okay.
Normalizing terms like overwhelm, stress, and burnout can actually help them understand what they’re going through and encourage them to take a step back.
It also helps to be open about your own vulnerabilities, so your people don’t feel like they’re alone!
Hear what your people aren’t saying
Be aware of less obvious signs of hardship. A drop in productivity, absence of enthusiasm, or a general change in attitude can point to deeper issues bubbling under the surface.
When you notice these, check in with your employees. If they feel comfortable sharing how they’re feeling, listen first (avoid ‘fixing’ the issue), and ask what would help them feel more supported.
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