5 steps to better staff mental health - NDA

24 May 2023

According to a report by the World Health Organization, depression and anxiety cost the global economy $1 trillion each year in lost productivity.

The NDA and its partner Affinity HR Group's advice on mental health includes normalising discussions and training managers to be more aware. Image: NDA

According to a report by the World Health Organization, depression and anxiety cost the global economy $1 trillion each year in lost productivity. Employees who experience mental illness are more likely to take sick days or leave their jobs altogether, while a study by professional services network Deloitte said that companies who prioritise mental wellness see a return of $4 for every $1 invested.

By investing in mental wellness, employers can reduce absenteeism and turnover, ultimately benefiting business outcomes, improving their bottom line and creating a more positive work environment.

So what is an employer to do?

Affinity HR Group, a partner organisation of the US National Demolition Association (NDA), has produced its own five-point checklist for businesses looking to make the work environment a better place for their staff’s mental health.

1 Create a positive work environment

Employers can create a positive work environment by promoting open communication, recognising employees’ achievements, and providing opportunities for professional development.

2 Look at work-life balance

Work-life balance can help employees better manage stress and reduce the risk of burnout. Employers can promote work-life balance by offering flexible work arrangements, such as remote work, flexible hours, or job sharing.

3 Train managers to recognise and support mental health

Employers can provide training to help managers recognise signs of mental illness, approach employees about their concerns, and provide support and resources. Manager training can help reduce the stigma of mental illness and create a supportive workplace culture.

4 Normalise mental health discussions

Encouraging employees to talk about their mental health can help reduce the stigma of mental illness and create a supportive workplace culture. Employers can promote mental health discussions by providing resources and information about mental health issues, offering training to managers and employees, and creating a safe and confidential environment for employees to discuss their mental health.

5 Provide mental health resources

Providing mental health resources is essential for supporting employee mental wellness. Employers can offer a range of resources, including EAPs (Employee Assistance Programmes), mental health screening tools, and access to mental health professionals. Employers can also provide resources to help employees manage stress, such as mindfulness and meditation programmes.

Information originally in The Monday HR Minute, published by the NDA and its human resources partner Affinity HR Group. The NDA and Affinity believe that by dedicating just a few minutes a week to thinking about people management practices, business owners and managers can make enormous strides in improving workplace performance.

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