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Making the Effort to Prioritise Mental Health at Work: Here’s Why

By mjackson
talking about mental health at work

It’s vital for your employees to feel comfortable and supported in sharing any worries or concerns they have regarding their health at work. Nevertheless, recent research found that this is hardly the case for UK workers—especially in the realm of mental health.

In fact, while over 40 per cent of employees reported feeling comfortable with discussing their physical health conditions to a supervisor or manager, less than 15 per cent said they would feel the same towards sharing their mental health concerns.

What’s worse, just 10 per cent of workers reported that they would be comfortable discussing serious mental health conditions with their

employer—such as psychosis, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder or self-harm—whereas 40 per cent said they would openly discuss a severe physical ailment, like cancer.

Such startling statistics emphasise how crucial it is that your organisation takes steps to break down the stigma surrounding mental health in the workplace and ensures employees feel supported through any health complication—whether it be mental or physical.

And doing so won’t just help your employees. By encouraging an open dialogue on mental health at work and providing your employees with proper support, your organisation could reap the following benefits:

  • Decreased absenteeism and presenteeism rates
  • Increased productivity levels
  • Reduced staff turnover rates and higher retention levels

Consider this guidance to prioritise mental health within your workplace and help employees feel comfortable sharing their health concerns:

  • Require supervisors to schedule routine, individual meetings with employees to discuss well-being.
  • Offer staff training and resources on making mental health a priority and how to seek professional help, if needed.
  • Encourage employees to make use of their paid holiday time and take a break from work.

To access more resources for supporting employees’ mental health, click here.

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