Mental Health at Work
Large scale nation-wide research shows that 75% of Indian employees express an interest in, or an active demand for, employee assistance programmes.
The recent trend is for most organisations to incorporate such programmes. Is your organisation one of them? What all does your Employee Assistance Programme cover? In all likelihood, such programmes provide assistance for a broad range of physical illnesses, while mental health is often left out of the picture. This is widely consistent with the overall lack of awareness about mental health and stigma attached to mental illness, especially in India.
But mental health has a role to play - it is your secret formula for success, your magic ingredient for improved employee engagement and organisational productivity.
Employee engagement is critical to organisational success. The extent to which employees value, enjoy and believe in what they do reflects in their drive, dedication and commitment to the organisation.
Would you call your workforce engaged? If they are, what helps them feel engaged? If not, what’s stopping them? While you’re thinking about the reasons, don’t forget to account for mental health and wellness.
The case for mental health at the workplace is strong - for instance, companies with an engaged workforce show improved productivity levels as well as reduced turnover and absenteeism. In fact, happy and engaged organisations are likely to outperform their competition by 20%!
For employees to be engaged, they need to be mentally healthy. Depression, anxiety, stress and other mental illnesses can interfere with an individual’s ability to function well and carry out everyday tasks.
The impact can be seen at work as well, in the form of:
A sharp decline in motivation
Poor relationships with colleagues
Lowered levels of job satisfaction
A reduction in productivity and output
Increased healthcare costs borne by employers
It’s Time for Engagement Driving Employee Engagement
A happy workforce is an engaged workforce, and an engaged workforce is a productive workforce. As employers in charge of workforces, your task is to drive employee engagement with the ultimate goal of improving your organisation’s productivity and performance. What can you do to propel your employees towards being more involved and engaged?
Show them you care
It all begins by expressing care for your employees. Employees need to feel supported in order to be productive. Having an Employee Wellness Programme in place can be an important message to employees - a message that you, as the employer, do care about their wellness. Holistic programmes that ensure that each employee receives the help and support they need can go a long way in driving engagement.
Make healthy lifestyle habits a priority
In the rat race, everyone forgets to prioritise simple activities that prevent and protect one from mental and physical illnesses. Wellness programmes are geared towards helping people develop healthier habits and/or getting rid of old, unhealthy ones. If a Wellness Programme is comprehensive and sophisticated enough, it would also include life-skills training so as to equip employees with the ability to cope well with difficulties.
Make support accessible and convenient
When employees are in distress, it is always helpful to have resources at hand so you can inform them about their options to deal with their difficulty in healthy ways. While Wellness programmes are a handy resource, they must be utilised by employees to be effective. It’s important to pick - or better yet, customise - programmes that consider your employees’ specific concerns and work-life schedules. For instance, Wellness programmes that are customisable would allow you to address concerns that are most common amongst your employees. Online programmes would allow people to access help and support anytime and anywhere, through their everyday gadgets - like a cellphone or laptop.
InnerHour’s Employee Happiness Programme is a one-stop solution for your employees’ mental health, so they can start living healthier, happier, and more productive lives. To learn more, contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org or +91 9167771131.
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