HR professionals believe their efforts to help employees’ mental health are undervalued by 34%

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caba, a charity that helps the ICAEW (Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales) has discovered that 41% of employees suffer from stress and/or burnout, despite 44% of HR workers believing their employees are in good mental health.

caba has seized the opportunity to highlight the mental health situation of the UK workforce in honor of Stress Awareness Month.

During the pandemic, HR respondents reported an 86% rise in mental health support at work, as well as a 42% increase in employees requesting help. Providing mental health training is the most typical method HRs have done to increase assistance (61% ). However, 38% of employees indicated that they are still suffering from burnout. Only 15% of their employees always follow their proactive health recommendations, leaving 34% of HR feeling like their attempt to assist employees with their mental health is unappreciated.

When asked why they don’t use the mental health services provided by their employer, 35% said they don’t think their symptoms are severe enough to seek help, and 28% said they were too embarrassed.

Kirsty Lilley, caba’s Mental Health Expert, proposes some effective approaches for businesses to create a positive mental health environment for their employees:

Plan for their assistance

Well-being is frequently considered as an afterthought and therefore employee assistance programmes (EAPs) are frequently launched without a real strategy. An approach like this may not have the desired impact, owing to the fact that an EAP has limited cultural influence. It’s tough to understand how the person you’re talking to will relate or assist you if you’re calling an external hotline.

A strategic approach is required instead. It must be data-driven, given equal weight to productivity and performance, and take into account all aspects of a company’s culture.

Firms must spend time determining the problem’s core causes, as well as where it is located and who it predominantly impacts. Putting in place support infrastructure, such as wellness agendas and mental health first responders, can be quite beneficial. Those in positions of responsibility, on the other hand, must take care to listen to their constituents and tailor their assistance to their needs.

Role models should be introduced

When these topics aren’t normalized in the workplace, it might be challenging to talk about mental health. Keeping this in mind, having role models within the organization who can talk about their personal mental health journey is one of the most powerful methods to put team members at ease.

However, it is critical that these role models be reputable and trustworthy. Senior leaders can deliver a powerful message by sharing their experiences, but a junior colleague may find it difficult to relate to their CEO. There is a pressing need for grass-roots activism so that team members can hear from someone they can relate to.

Their line managers should be developed

The strength of a team member’s relationship with their line manager can have a significant impact on their mental health risk. Line managers must be comfortable having open discussions. They must be trained and capable of inquiring about mental health when addressing routine management and growth procedures.

Create a psychological safe haven

Some of us may be afraid of being judged or having our credibility called into question if we seek treatment. Psychological safety is essential before people can even accept their own issues. After all, if you’re not in a safe environment, you’re more inclined to deny what’s going on around you to yourself and others.

Taking the effort to understand why people feel unsafe is an important part of this process. When people are reluctant to open up, it’s easy to become frustrated, although their reluctance is normal. The first step is to identify the source of the resistance and put steps in place to make team members feel more at ease.

Want to support your employee’s mental health? See how HealthBoxHR can help your organization manage and aid your staff’s mental health with our Mental Health Management Tool.

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