Wellbeing support within a business
Wellbeing support within a business
In this article, Health and Safety expert, Adam Williams discusses the importance of wellbeing support within a business and how employers can start to implement this.
How to support wellbeing and tackle the causes of work-related mental health problems:
We all have mental health just as we have physical health. It moves up and down along a spectrum from good to poor. Considering how much time we spend at work, it’s not surprising that workplace environments and culture affect our wellbeing.
Some employers know that organisations perform better when staff are healthy, motivated and focused. Moreover, research consistently shows that when employees feel their work is meaningful and they are valued and supported, they tend to have higher wellbeing levels, be more committed to the organisation’s goals and, importantly, perform better too. This strong relationship between levels of staff wellbeing and motivation and business performance is often called ‘employee engagement’.
‘60 per cent of employees say they’d feel more motivated and more likely to recommend their organisation as a good place to work if their employer took action to support mental wellbeing’. – Mind.org.uk
Wellbeing support in the workplace
Employers should send a clear message that staff wellbeing matters. Colleagues take cues from how leaders behave. When the CEO speaks out about mental health it can have a huge impact. Leaders can also show the organisation’s commitment to staff wellbeing by simple actions. For example, supporting a campaign to encourage all staff to take lunch breaks and to work healthy hours.
In many workplaces, mental health is the elephant in the room. Too often, employees are scared to talk to their manager and problems can spiral.
What can employers do to promote wellbeing in the workplace?
- Embed mental health in induction and training – Ensure staff are given information on how mental health is managed as well as what support is available as part of induction.
- Raise the profile – Invite a speaker on mental health to an event as part of activities for diversity, disability or mental health awareness.
- Make the most of internal communications channels – Raise awareness through blogs, myth busters, factsheets, tips for managers, useful web links and FAQs. In addition to this, you can also use posters, noticeboards, staff newsletters, magazines, intranet and internet pages to get the message out.
- Encourage mental health champions – People at all levels talking openly about mental health sends a clear message that you will get support if you’re experiencing a mental health problem and what’s more that this is not a barrier to career development.
How to promote dialogue, feedback and engagement within the workforce:
- Staff surveys and focus groups.
- Staff forums and diversity networks.
- Engagement steering groups.
- Monthly or quarterly performance review meetings.
- Improvement or planning ‘away days’.
- Regular group problem-solving meetings or innovation events.
- Work-stream groups that bring together different parts of the organisation.
- Feeding back board decisions to all staff.
- Effectively using internal communication channels.
A culture of openness
Speak regularly with team members to check how they’re doing and to reflect on what might be causing them stress. You can do this at a team level by adding a standing item to team meetings where people talk about wellbeing and stress as a group. Building checks into the organisation’s culture in this way can:
- Promote open dialogue and embed positive attitudes and behaviours.
- Help to normalise conversations about mental health.
- Help staff to think more about their own and colleagues’ mental health and what factors can affect this.
Wellbeing support training for line managers
The way you manage and support staff who are experiencing a mental health problem can be key in shaping how they cope and recover. Therefore, your organisation should:
- Provide training on mental health and stress management. This could include how to spot the signs and how to have supportive conversations with staff.
- Have clear guidelines for managers on managing mental health issues.
- Encourage and support positive manager behaviours.
Mental Wellbeing First Aider Training
We deliver a 2-day online course in Mental Wellbeing First Aid. The course provides an insightful understanding of mental health and mental health problems. Packed with practical advice, you will be able to spot signs of declining mental health, and by using a practical action plan, be able to appropriately offer someone help in both an emergency and a longer-term situation. Our next upcoming course is on Thursday 30th – Friday 31st March at a cost of £265 + VAT per person.
It is likely that having a staff member trained in Mental Wellbeing First Aid will become a requirement soon so it may be worth getting one step ahead by booking yourself or your colleagues onto this course.
If you would like to book onto this course or would like to know other available dates for this training, please get in contact with one of the team.
T: 0330 107 1037