No matter what industry or field of work you’re in, you’re employees’ health should always be a top concern. Mental health is a serious issue that affects 1 in 5 adults in the US or 43.8 million in total. To put the issue more into perspective, take a look at the statistics below:
- Serious mental illness costs America $193.2 billion in lost earnings per year
- Only 41% of adults in the U.S. with a mental health condition received mental health services in the past year.
- African Americans and Hispanic Americans each use mental health services at about one-half the rate of Caucasian Americans and Asian Americans at about one-third the rate.
- Individuals living with serious mental illness face an increased risk of having chronic medical conditions.
With this in mind, it’s up to you to best figure out how to cater to the emotional well-being of your employees. They’re responsible for running your business and without them, you’d have to close up shop. This topic isn’t talked about often enough in regards to its effect in the professional setting, so here are some strategies for breaking through and really having a positive effect on your employees’ mental and physical well-being.
Checking in every now and then
Those times of the year when work really piles up is when your team is most susceptible to stress and feelings of burnout, so it’s particularly important you make the effort to see if anything is bothering your employees. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you go out and pay for a therapy session for your entire staff, just that you do what you can to make their lives at work that much easier.
This is particularly true around the holidays when retail workers are busy keeping up with the increase in consumer demand and office workers are trying to get everything wrapped up for the end of the year. And it’s understandable that you may be too busy to reach out to each person individually, especially if you’re managing an especially large staff. To get past this, send an email out to your supervisors/team leads asking them to check in on team members.
Offering personal days
Giving your team some time to recoup has proved to be a huge benefit to their health, both physical as well as mental. So offering personal days, which are specifically so employees have a day where they can focus on their mental health, is especially important so they can check up on themselves and ensure they’re nipping any issues right as they arise.
Make the effort to regularly encourage your employees to use a few of their vacation days for this exact reason and you’ll see it pay off with employees that are well rested and with a positive attitude. If you’re able to, it’s a good idea to swing a few extra vacation days to your policy to make sure they have enough time for proper personal days.
Have an open door policy
Sometimes employees need to get certain things off their chest as the day goes on and would prefer not to have to wait for email responses to do it. That’s why having an open door policy is an effective way to keep your team happy. It shows to everyone that you care and that you’re here for them whenever you’re needed.
Every manager would like to see every one of their employees in the office on a daily basis but the world is shifting. Thanks to technology and its ability to streamline and optimize workplace communication, its no longer necessary for each and every employee to be physically present in the office. So please consider giving employees the option to have a number of days available to them each month or year for them to work remotely.
The best part is that employees are able to skip out on that long commute that takes a big chunk out of their day and causes large amounts of stress. Other benefits include a higher level of productivity as well as being in a better mood overall and lower levels of stress.
Get your company to provide mental health resources
This one may take some fighting for but it’ll be well worth it in the end. You should do everything you can to get your company to provide mental health resources for your employees, this is one of the most effective ways of ensuring they get the help they need when they need it.
Two options your company should be sure to offer is health insurance that covers therapy visits as well as reimbursing employees gym memberships. It’s been proven that healthy people are happier people, so you would be doing your company a huge favor by getting employees free gym memberships.
Mental health is a growing issue in America and more people are suffering from mental issues than you originally would have guessed. This means there are many people in your very own company that are battling with their own issues. To ensure they get the help they need, put the above tips in action.