What does mental health look like in the workplace?

Mental Health in the Workplace refers to employees’ mental, emotional and social well-being in a collaborative work environment.

Employees who are in good mental health show respect for others and build positive relationships with their coworkers. They also can cope with the challenges and responsibilities of the workplace.

Why is it important for HR leaders to care about mental health at work?

Mental health problems are very common among adults in the U.S. and globally. The CDC states that 1 in 5 Americans suffers from mental illness. 71% of American adults report suffering from anxiety, stress, headaches, and other mental health problems.

Mental health problems can also cause financial repercussions. Employers lose billions of dollars each year due to depression alone. Employing the services of a Fractional HR Consulting Firm can help.

What role does HR play in mental health in the work environment?

Although it is not the responsibility of HR to make decisions about employees’ lifestyles, they can help improve employee well-being in the workplace. HR leaders view the office as a whole-person approach to mental health.

  • Allow employees to be autonomous. Employees who feel valued and find meaning in work are more satisfied. To be satisfied in your job, you must have a purpose.
  • Employees and managers should be educated about basic health practices. To help employees make better decisions regarding their mental health, HR leaders can hold workshops on goal-setting, prioritizing, and goal-setting.
  • Discuss mental health. Many employees feel isolated because they handle stress and anxiety issues differently than others. These are all normal emotions, and everyone must deal with them. HR can offer employees mental health days to help them recharge and take a breather.
  • You can create a calm environment. HR can set up a zen area, add greenery to the office, or create chill spots for employees to relax.
  • Workplace wellness programs should be implemented. A gym is a great perk for some companies. There are many other ways to encourage healthy living. These include subsidizing employees’ fitness classes or organizing team-building events outside the office, possibly in the great outdoors
  • Incorporate wellness education into your workplace. You can do yoga classes during lunch breaks or invite guest speakers to discuss healthy eating and exercise habits. Or you can meditate in a quiet area of your office.
  • Embrace gratitude at work. Showing gratitude to your employees will naturally increase appreciation and happiness within a team environment. Happiness can be found in gratitude.

What role does corporate culture play in improving mental health?

The mental health of employees is key to healthy, thriving company culture. A healthy mentality between individuals and the workplace leads to a positive, supportive, lively work environment and culture. 

Implementing a “Corporate Initiative” to improve mental health is no different than any other corporate initiative.  It must start at the top.  Changing or improving the culture of any organization cannot be a grassroots movement.  It needs to be a directive driven by the leadership of the organization. Achilles Group offers Full-Service HR Solutions, and can be a valuable resource in helping to form your corporate culture.

Creating a Culture of Gratitude

Research into workplace gratitude has shown that employees need to be able to hear “thank you” first from their boss. This is because gratitude can make people feel unsafe in an environment with a history of ingratitude. It is up to those in power to say “thanks” clearly, consistently, and authentically in public and private settings.

These efforts can be translated into procedures and protocols. Bosses can ask new employees how they would like to be acknowledged. Throw a party for your employee and thank them for their contributions. You can also incorporate gratitude into staff meetings and performance reviews, where people can take five minutes to express their appreciation. Achilles Group is a Houston Recruiting Firm and can offer ideas on how you can put together a program based around your organisation.

It doesn’t work to force people to be grateful. It perpetuates the power imbalances that make it difficult to express gratitude.

It is important to provide spaces and times that encourage gratitude and a willingness to express it. Studies consistently show that too much gratitude can lead to gratitude fatigue.

How can authenticity be communicated?   Specificity is key.

People are more likely to increase their willingness to help others when acknowledged for their efforts. Not everyone enjoys being thanked or saying “thank you” in public. They might be shy or truly modest.  Leadership needs to make many opportunities for gratitude and take advantage of these moments to improve the overall working environment and the menthol health of the employees and the organization. 

About Achilles Group:

Achilles Group is Houston Based, Outsource HR Firm that is dedicated to Training and Developing Leadership in Houston. Our Fractional HR Consulting method is the key to our success.