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We are delighted at the media attention on mental health in the workplace today. Jobs In Mind welcomes the Thriving At Work report into this vital issue, and we look forward to the government’s response.
A third of our waking lives are spent at work. Through almost 30 years of helping Londoners with their mental health at work, Jobs In Mind see first hand just how extensively damaging an unsupportive and hostile work environment can be to health and well-being.
The report is right to highlight that this not just a moral issue, but a business issue. Looking after the mental health of employees is good for the bottom line. Although we are a society built of humanity first and foremost, unfortunately at present often the latter is the only way to wake up employers to the former.
Empower your staff, start with four simple steps from Jobs In Mind:
Have a policy and stick to it
This could be as simple as stating that your workplace will be free from stigma around mental health and staff should feel comfortable about speaking about their mental health.
Show you take staff mental health seriously
Display information about how to get help and who to speak to, encourage staff to switch off from work at the end of the day (turn off email notifications from their phones!) and recognise contributions and thank people for their work.
Be prepared to listen when staff need to adjust hours or take time out for family or need time to attend talking therapy.
Have Mental Health Champions
Train people in Mental Health First Aid and encourage others to look out for signs that colleagues may be struggling.
Author: Chris Thomas, Director, on behalf of Jobs In Mind.